As a recruiter for mid-senior level positions in the financial services industry, I spend a fair amount of time researching candidates and referral sources on LinkedIn. It is amazing to me how many banking professionals have out-of-date, inaccurate, or otherwise unprofessional LinkedIn profiles.
Granted, there has been a great deal of consolidation in banking over the past year, and getting one’s LinkedIn profile up-to-date may not seem like the most pressing issue but, in 2018, it is critical to have your social media presence working for you (and not against you).
Having your profile up-to-date is not only important for career progression. Remember, your clients are on LinkedIn. Your competitors are on LinkedIn. You need to be on LinkedIn with a professional, accurate profile.
Here are a few “tips” from someone who has seen it all.
- At a minimum, make sure your current employer and title are accurate.
- Provide your career progression – your last two-three roles would be optimal.
- If you only have 5-25 connections, that tells us that you are not actively networking and using LinkedIn and we have little confidence in your profile information. It takes a minimum amount of effort to connect with people you know in the industry. Why not connect with your clients? Your colleagues? Just do it.
- A brief summary of your most current role is important so that others can understand what you are really doing. If you have listed your title as “Underwriter,” viewers have no idea if that is Mortgage, CRE, Commercial, or other. Be sure to clarify your role.
- Throw in a few bullet points that tell me what you’ve accomplished, not just what your duties/responsibilities are.
- Regarding profile pictures – LinkedIn is a professional networking site. It is not the right place to post a photo of your family or an unprofessional looking candid shot. If a professional work photo is not easily accessible, at least take a photo that presents you at your professional best and is similar in size/proportion to a professional photo.
- Ensure that you are providing good location information. If you live and work in Chapel Hill, for instance, and you want to continue working close to home, the location descriptor of Raleigh – Durham area may not be best for your profile. If you want to keep your profile location broader, then it’s a good idea to note specifically where you are located in your current role.
- Keep your contact information updated. We see an even split between work emails and personal emails on LinkedIn profiles. People can’t see your contact information unless you have connected with them, so the risk of unsolicited communication is small. It’s OK if you’d prefer not to enter a phone number, but at a minimum, have a current email address in your profile.
- Be sure to use first person rather than third person in your summaries. LinkedIn is intended to be interactive compared to a paper resume.
- Most importantly, inject a little personality into your profile. We like to see your enthusiasm for what you do each day!