Linking up at LinkedIn
LinkedIn is one of the most popular networking websites that is in great demand today. Although it is classified as a social networking website, it is mostly a professional networking website and is a great resource for entrepreneurs as well as job seekers alike. It is different from most other websites in the niche in this respect and has many a great corporate biggies as its members. Basic membership at LinkedIn in free of cost and it offers a detailed profile setup (this is basically a digital resume and it consists of education, skills, website links, work history and many other details) compared to any other social networking website. Networking is very important at LinkedIn and is akin to the Kevin Bacon game (six degrees). It differs in the aspect that it is highly important to a career-oriented individual. Let us what makes LinkedIn so important.
For Employers: Employers have become smarter than before and today they do not limit themselves to posting their needs on naukri.com or monster.com. They have extended their profiles to check the candidate’s Facebook, MySpace or LinkedIn profiles before making a decision. This is the reason why profiles on social networking websites, especially personal ones should be kept private since an employer would not be highly impressed to see how much partying a candidate does. LinkedIn is very useful here since t lists all your achievements and work history in detail and presents a very professional picture to an employer. Another great benefit of LinkedIn from the point of view of a candidate is that when an employer looks at the professional connections you have it puts their mind at ease to make a decision on your behalf if your network is related to them in one way or the other.
For Jobs/Recommendations: Making connections to people who may offer you a job is very easy at LinkedIn. Since LinkedIn has a job listing section in which the users are able to post jobs and positions, these posts also contain a lot of information about the person posting the opening or job. This opens doors to an aspirant to look for any common connections in the network. If there is anyone a few connections away, it is very easy to ask for an introduction and connect to the person posting the job or the opening. A LinkedIn profile comes in use in two different ways here – a) A person looks for the number of connection you have and b) The number of recommendations that you have. An impressive number of connections and a few good recommendations can get you your dream opening in no time at all.
For Networking: LinkedIn also serves as a great resource for the future since it recommends you from the past. Keeping this in mind it is always important to keep in touch and be friendly with old bosses and colleagues. This will greatly help career prospects and eve businesses. A big and growing network can help in a lot of ways, for example, it is always easy to locate openings within the network and apply rather than asking someone for a favor.
Some facts about LinkedIn that cannot be ignored
There a few facts about LinkedIn that when understood will reinforce its importance in the professional and business world. If a user can understand the importance of the following facts, there is no need to emphasize the importance of LinkedIn.
- a. People who work at Google average 47 connections each on LinkedIn. It must be important.
- b. Connections for a Harvard Business School graduate average at 58. Do they need LinkedIn to get a job?
- c. Most people who are offered openings through LinkedIn have over 20 connections. In fact they get about 35 times more offers than people who have less than 5 connections.
- d. All of the Fortune 500 companies have a representative on LinkedIn and almost all of them are represented by employees over and above the director level.
The importance of having a LinkedIn profile is more than underlined with the above facts for a career minded individual.
Fun with figures
LinkedIn has grown leaps and bounds in the recent past and has been the beacon of the social networking niche. A few figures would illuminate the situation. All figures below are form September-October 2008 and LinkedIn has grown over 200%, if not more since.
- LinkedIn attracted a record 12 million unique visitors in September 2008 which has been pegged at a 200% growth over the previous year.
- LinkedIn is home to over 9 million savvy networkers (networkers who have begun to use social networking before it actually existed) and these networkers have the most connections (an average of 61). These networkers make the most of LinkedIn and are estimated to have an annual income of over $93,500.
- Linked has about 8.5 million senior executives as members and their average annual incomes is in the range of $104,000. These are people who are happy with their power jobs and use LinkedIn to connect to their colleagues. This segment has about 32 connections on an average.
- LinkedIn also has about 6.6 million late adopters who have come later to LinkedIn after a lot of invitations. They are mostly professionals and have an income level of about $88,000 a year with an average of 23 connections each.
- The rest of the users at LinkedIn are categorized as “exploring option” and number about 6.1 million. They are mostly working professionals and are looking for other job options. With an average personal income of $87,500 and about 20 connections, they put the LinkedIn network to good use.
As is evident from the above statistics, the possibilities through LinkedIn networking are virtually endless and for the career minded person, this network is a boon. If you are not already on LinkedIn, it is time you joined the network and start finding your old colleagues and bosses. Ultimately they are the ones who can power your future career growth.