LinkedIn is a powerful platform for job hunters in all industries. It’s a great place to make new contacts and cultivate old ones.
Many companies also use LinkedIn to find potential new employees. One of the key things they look for when examining a job candidate’s LinkedIn profile is the Skills and Endorsements section. The more endorsements a person has gathered, the more appealing that person is as a job candidate.
How important is getting your skills endorsed on LinkedIn? In a word, very. The more endorsements you can gather, the better your chances of landing that new job.
Understanding LinkedIn Endorsements
There are many parts of your profile on LinkedIn. There are sections for your work experience, volunteer experience, and education, all of which are important. Beneath these sections is one titled Skills & Endorsements, and it’s important, too.
This section is where you list those specific skills that you’ve used in your current or past jobs. These skills provide a quick look at your job-specific abilities – things you do that might transfer to a new position.
People you know and have worked with can validate your skills by endorsing them on your profile. If they agree that you have that skill, they can endorse that skill with a single mouse click. It’s easy to do and adds weight to those skills you’ve listed. Any LinkedIn member can endorse your skills – current and former co-workers, bosses, even others in your industry.
By the way, an endorsement is different from a recommendation – which LinkedIn also offers. An endorsement is a one-click action, where a recommendation is a written reference, a paragraph or two long. Both endorsements and recommendations are valuable, but endorsements are easier for others to make.
The Best LinkedIn Endorsement Suggestions
All endorsements are important, but some more so than others.
The most important endorsements are for those skills that matter most to a potential employer. If you’re looking for a digital marketing position, for example, that skill you added for the lawn mowing you did when you were in college isn’t that important – and, in fact, may detract from your more relevant skills. It’s also likely that irrelevant skills won’t get many, if any, endorsements, so it’s best to not include them.
It’s essential that you focus on those skills most relevant to the job you’re looking for and attract endorsements for them. Know that LinkedIn organizes your skills into a handful of major categories; some potential employers may find certain types of skills more valuable than others.
For most LinkedIn users, Industry Knowledge is the first skillset listed – and, for many employers, the most important. These skills tell a potential employer how experienced you are in a particular industry. Endorsements for these skills are key – especially when they come from others in the industry.
Interpersonal Skills matter to many employers, as well. These show that you know how to work well with others, communicate well, and display management and leadership traits. Endorsements here are also important, as they indicate you actually possess these skills and aren’t just listing common traits.
As you accumulate endorsements over time, revisit those skills you’ve listed but have received few endorsements for. A skill without endorsements can stand out like a sore thumb. It’s better to show those skills with endorsements and not leave potential employers wondering why you weren’t endorsed for a specific skill.
How to Add and Endorse Skills on LinkedIn
To add a skill to your own LinkedIn profile, click Me on the toolbar then click View Profile. This displays your profile page. Scroll down to the Skills & Endorsements section then click Add a New Skill. You can select from one of the suggested skills or use the search box to find another. Click the + next to the skill to add it to your profile. You can list up to 50 skills.
That’s how you add new skills to your own profile, but how do you add a skill to someone else’s LinkedIn profile? While you can’t add a new skill to someone on LinkedIn, it’s easy to endorse a skill they’ve already listed. Go to that person’s profile page, scroll down to the Skills & Endorsements section, and click the + next to the skill you want to endorse. If the person has more skills listed, click See More Skills to view them all.
Endorsing Skills on LinkedIn – How to Ask Your Connections
Since endorsements come from other LinkedIn users, how do you get your connections to endorse your skills?
First, you must have the proper skills listed. The skills you list on LinkedIn should reflect skills you actually possess. Don’t forget to list skills related to your primary skillset. For example, if you have general marketing skills, you might want also want to list Marketing Communications, Marketing Management, Digital Marketing, Online Marketing, and Marketing Strategy.
Next, you need to draw people to your profile to endorse those skills. One of the best ways to do this is to endorse the skills of other people. LinkedIn members receive email notifications when people endorse the skills on their profiles. When someone sees that you’ve endorsed one of their skills, they’re likely to visit your profile and endorse your skills in return.
You can also ask people to visit your profile and endorse your skills. Just message them on LinkedIn or any other social network, or send them an email with a link to your LinkedIn profile. Tell them you’re in the job market and would like for them to endorse some of your skills. You’d be surprised how many people will respond and offer their endorsements!
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If you’re in the market for a new position, contact us at Mapertunity! We can help you find new opportunities.