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As you look forward to 2016, you may be thinking about New Years’ resolutions. One resolution you may want to consider is updating your LinkedIn profile. If you are searching for a new position or just looking to network in your field, optimizing your LinkedIn profile will increase your prospects in 2016.

Is Your Profile Complete?

Unlike Facebook or other social sites, recruiters look at your LinkedIn profile as a resume. You can be more personable and help potential companies get to know you, but you need to make sure that it is complete and shows off your accomplishments.

Check to make sure that your profile includes your current or most recent positions, any new job skills you may have learned, and recent work experience. This will help create a more accurate picture of your qualifications for potential employers.

Is Your Summary Optimized?

An optimized summary will highlight past results, help companies get to know you, and should include targeted key words to help recruiters find you. It should be no shorter than three paragraphs, but no longer than five and include any documents, videos or other multimedia you can add to highlight work experience.

Is Your Value Proposition in Your Headline?

Put your value proposition in your headline so that hiring managers will know if you fit their needs quickly and easily. This will also make your profile stand out from others in your field.

Is Your Current Job Included?

Always include a current job, even if you are currently unemployed. Hiring managers use this field in candidate searches, so if you leave yours blank, you may be missing out on job opportunities. If you are unemployed, create a title that defines the position you are seeking to help recruiters find you.

Is Your Photo Professional?

Again, you need to remember that your LinkedIn profile is your resume, so don’t upload selfies wearing ripped jeans and your favorite T-shirt. To help understand the kind of photo you should include in your profile, look at the images of other professional profiles in your field.

Is Your Volunteer Work Included?

To help hiring managers and potential employers obtain an accurate picture of who you are, you should add volunteer work, any additional languages you speak, and any large projects you have completed. This is especially helpful if your work experience isn’t an exact match for the position you are seeking. The skills you obtained in a volunteer position or on a large project may help you land the perfect job.

When you are networking on LinkedIn, people will form opinions of you based on your profile. If you are seeking a new position in 2016, your job profile needs to be complete, professional and highlight your experience in your field. Updating your LinkedIn profile for the new year will be one resolution you can complete and you will see the benefits before the end of 2016.

If you are seeking a new career in 2016, then contact us. We can help you leverage your LinkedIn profile and resume to find the position you want in the new year.

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