There is a reason why recruiters turn to LinkedIn first when looking for candidates for job openings. Its size as the world’s largest online professional network combined with the amount of information users can convey on their Profiles make it a perfect hunting ground for anyone looking for quality employees.
Let’s explore 7 ways that you can use LinkedIn to maximize the chances of finding your ideal employee.
- Check with Your Connections - Word of mouth and personal referrals are still powerful business tools and online platforms can facilitate this form of communication. Review your connections to see who may know someone looking for the type of position you want to fill. Some of them may even be a candidate themselves. Of course, the larger your LinkedIn network, the greater the possibility that this approach will be effective for you.
- Use Advanced Search - LinkedIn’s Advanced Search feature enables you to search for people based on a number of parameters including name, keywords, location, company, industry, title and school. It allows you to fine tune your search to a high level. For example, if you are looking for an office manager within a certain radius of your office who knows Quicken accounting software, here is an example of what the results might look like:
- Mention your Candidate Search in a Status Update - Another way of letting your network know that you are trying to fill a position is to post a Status Update on your Profile. This goes to all of your first degree connections. You can further extend the reach of your post by asking some of your well connected friends on LinkedIn to Like it which in turns distributes the post to their connections.
- Mention your Candidate Search in Groups - If you need to fill a key position, you may want to join some LinkedIn Groups centered on that particular position or skill set. You should also join LinkedIn Groups serving your geographic area that are relevant to your industry. There are over 1.2 million Groups on LinkedIn covering a vast range of job functions and industries. When you start a discussion in a Group you will have the option to select Job as its category so it will appear under the Job Discussions tab in the Group. You can then post your job description for all members of the Group to see.
- Post a Job - LinkedIn allows you to post a job for 30 days for a fee. For example, a posting in the NYC area costs $395 while a posting in Philadelphia costs $295. By way of comparison, posting positions on conventional job boards is usually free, but most will attract many unqualified candidates. LinkedIn has a reputation for delivering qualified candidates. Finding the right fit for a position is well worth the nominal fee – ask any hiring specialist or recruiter. If you have a LinkedIn Company Page, which is highly recommended, any jobs you post will automatically appear in the Careers section of your page.
- Review Applicants’ Profiles - Once you start to receive responses to your job posting, a LinkedIn Profiles can give you a much more complete picture of an applicant than a paper or digital resume. LinkedIn enables an individual to not only showcase their job history and education, but also recommendations, projects, languages, certifications, awards, publications, volunteer work and more. The fact that you can include video and audio files on your Profile can make for a rich presentation of a candidate’s full range of capabilities. In addition, a person’s LinkedIn Profile can give you a sense of their level of professionalism, their engagement in industry dialogue and how well regarded they are by others.
- Check for References - LinkedIn makes it easier for you to check references and get other opinions as to an applicant’s qualifications. It is simple for you to determine whether any of your connections may have worked at the same company as your applicant. You can just click on “Search for References” in the drop-down menu next to “Send a Message” as you see in the screenshot below.These people may have worked with your candidate directly or they may be able to point you to someone who has worked with them. This provides you with another source of information apart from the references provided by your candidate.
If you have used LinkedIn to find great employees, please let us know how you did it.
An entrepreneur with an eye for good design and advocate of simplicity. He brings a fresh strategy and approach to every project and plays an integral role in clients’ accomplishments through collaboration and close integration. Through his hands-on experience in technology and marketing, he ensures user experiences and technology are on the leading edge.