Hack #2 – Importance of My CV and LinkedIn Profile

By Chris Cutting – CV Adviser

Hack # 2 – Your CV and Linkedin Profile is the second of three CV hacks which aim to improve the chance of success with online applications.

Online recruitment makes job and CV searching much easier yet paradoxically, more complex. Today there are more online CV search tools available for recruiters than previously. Working as a recruiter and
CV Adviser it is clear that many job seekers still don’t fully understand them and as a result are not taking full advantage and benefitting. A good example is LinkedIn.

Easy yet Complex

Completing a LinkedIn profile is relatively easy, and yet managing the content and “privacy settings” is a little convoluted. As a result, profiles are not fully completed and settings tend to be ignored. This means a useful platform is not exploited effectively by candidates. The question arises; “How do I make my LinkedIn profile effective?” It starts with your LinkedIn CV.

Your LinkedIn CV

Surprisingly, LinkedIn is able to create a PDF CV from your profile. It will become clear later why this is useful. The following works for MS and may be slightly different for Apple users.

Go to your Linkedin profile and at the top, next to the “Add Profile” box is another labelled “More”.

Click “More” and a drop down menu appears in which there is a pictogram and title “Save to PDF”. Click on this. At the bottom of your screen appears a dialogue box, click “Run” and a PDF CV appears.

Making my LinkedIn profile more effective

You are now two easy steps from making your LinkedIn profile more effective. For this hack to work, you must have a well written CV (If you haven’t CV Adviser can help with this). Compare your CV with the Linkedin PDF CV. The gaps on your Linkedin profile will become instantly evident. Strengthen your profile by including the significant aspects of your CV that highlight what you have to offer. Know the roles you are considering and want to be searched for and note the key words and phrases which must also be relevant to your experience. Next, incorporate these into your profile.

  1. LinkedIn searches for key phrases and words that are repeated in your profile, to indicate relevance of your profile to the role being recruited for. To a degree, the more repetitions the higher the system ranks your profile. Therefore repeat key phrase/words on your profile three or four times. For a brief example; assume a key aspect of your next role and previous experience is profitability. The idea seems easy, insert “Profit, profit, profit” to achieve repetition. However it will look as if you’ve had an aberration! Instead, use the key words in each of the three boxes on your profile marked – “About”, “Experience” and “Skills & Endorsements”. For example:     
    About   “profit generator of over 70% p.a. in current role”  
    Experience  “ held profit and cost responsibilities”
    Skills & Endorsements “profit generation”

Incidentally, once you have updated your profile and created a PDF CV, it will NOT look the same as your CV. This is perfectly fine. What’s important is that the content and repeated key words/phrases are present. At this point you’re asking “What are the benefits of this exercise?”

The Benefits

Most recruiters use key words and phrases to search for relevant candidate profiles on Linkedin. By creating an effective profile it helps the system not only identify but also prioritise the relevance of your profile for the recruiter. If you don’t play to this, your profile won’t show as high in searches and can be the cause for missing out on opportunities despite having a very relevant CV. 

It is worth noting that Applicant Tracking SystemsATS, operate much the same way as Linkedin regarding key words and phrases. Therefore it is worth applying a similar approach to your CV when applying via job boards or larger agencies.

The PDF CV hack can be used to make a quick application in the absence of access to your own CV. 

The next blog Hack # 3 will outline further benefits of having an effective profile and the judicial use of “privacy settings”.