A Recurring Theme for a Sourcer on LinkedIn… Help Me Help You!

I thought in my old job that I was little too “in” to LinkedIn.

It’s worse now.  I’m on it all day.  And what I’m seeing, well… to be honest… it’s not pretty.  And while we mostly give advice for recruiters and HR pros here on FOT, time for some advice from a sourcer to the job seekers out there. If you’re a jobseeker on LinkedIn, if you’re even thinking about being a jobseeker on the down low, help me out here.

Linkedin Fill in your profile.  I don’t need the Great American Novel, but give me a job title, some skillset information, professional certifications, whatever makes you “you” and gives you a step up on your peers. And think carefully about your “industry”.  I see a lot of people who pick their industry based on their profession.  That’s not always a good idea.  If you have worked in telecomm, select it.  Same for Non-profit, Accounting, etc.  Research pro’s often get tasked with finding professionals with specific experience and will use LinkedIn’s search functionality to whittle down candidates,  For example, if I need an Accounting Manager with Non-Profit experience, I’m going to look at Accounting Managers working in the Non-Profit industry.  And don’t forget your resume.  LinkedIn will let you upload your resume or use it to complete your profile, but if you’re not really looking, yet, keep the scope somewhat narrow.  Hit the high points.

Use your profile like a business card.  Link it everywhere and make your information available.

References are great, but if I see you have the background I need, I’m not going to stress that.  I’m still old school enough that I’ll ask for them during the vetting process.

Give me some way to contact you.  Sure, I’ll use inmails.  Quite happily I will.  But I can let you know quicker that I’ve got an awesome opening if you give me a link somewhere in your profile or even embed your email in the traditional imajobseeker[at]abc-company[dot]com.  I’m completely cool with the fact that no one wants spam – but at least link to your resume somewhere else or something.

Get rid of your duplicate profiles.  Yeah, I know you have ’em.  Find a way to dump the old one.  Help LinkedIn do some quality control.

Network.  There are lots of ways to do this.  Some free, some incredibly cheap.  But grow your network.  You have a better chance of being seen by a recruiter searching the site internally if you do this.  Look for open networkers to get yourself started.  There are tons of us on there.

Pay It Forward.  Get notified about a job but it’s not your cup of tea? Send it out to your network.  You never know who’s looking, and there are so many jobs not being advertised through traditional channels that your network will thank you.

Got a question? Want to connect? Awesome.  You can find me at www.linkedin.com/in/kellydingee.  If I don’t have a job for you now, I may in the future.  And who knows, maybe our mutual networking can help us pay it forward for a jobseeker who needs a job now.  Want more advice on using LinkedIn as a jobseeker? Bill Boorman wrote a piece here that has some really valid suggestions.

FOT Background Check

Kelly Dingee
Kelly Dingee is a Senior Manager, Global Talent Acquisition for Marriott International. She has extensive sourcing experience having worked for Staffing Advisors (retained search), AIRS (training!) and Thales Communications, Inc., (cleared/telecom) and got her start in the profession while a full life cycle recruiter at Acterna (now known as Viavi). Lucky for Kelly, she had a boss who could see the potential of sourcing candidates from the web, and in 1998, she stepped into a newly created sourcing role. No truth to the rumor that she has a side business to help you push your resume to the top of Google search results…


  1. Michele says:

    What advice might you have for someone who is concerned about privacy, as it relates to LinkedIn?
    I’m registered and have a VERY sparse profile, but rarely login and have little inclination to so. This is partially due to the fact that I’m not actively job-seeking at the moment, but even if I were, I would have a lot of trepidation about using LinkedIn as well as I could/should.
    Granted, I haven’t spent nearly enough time familiarizing myself with the ins and outs of how it works, but my gut tells me to tread lightly out of concern for my privacy. This is especially true because I have a unique name that insofar as I can tell, not a single other person in America shares with me, and also because I have a very real need to prevent a particular family member from being able to find me (or any information about me, including contact information).
    So, what – if any – advice or insights might you have?

  2. @Michele
    It sounds like you have a specialized situation that will keep you from taking a lot of the advice on using social media tactics – since the point of them is to make it possible for people to find you.
    You can still use the channels, like LinkedIn, to find people that you want to network with. You’ll have to do more outreach and likely need to start well before you actually need a job to make this really work. If you go this route you may want to join many relevant groups to have access to as many of other people’s profiles as possible. Then, when you share a group with them, you can also usually InMail them to start a conversation about something specific.

  3. Tracy says:

    I have been to many workshops by LinkedIn and the recommendations are very important, whether the recruiter reads them or not.
    If you have 3+ more, you come up higher in the search results for people like yourself. If you don’t have at least 2, your profile is not complete and you barely come up at all.
    While your advice is good, from a job-seeker’s perspective, there is a lot more to tricking the algorithms so they are even seen by someone like you in the first place.

  4. Linda ford says:

    You mention being careful to select the proper “industry”. I notice that LinkedIn does not offer “Manufacturing” as an option under industries. What do you suggest? I worked as an HR Specialist for an optical manufacturing plant. Thank you.

  5. Thanks Kelly,
    Your post is Spot on! Job seekers need to become aware that their personal brand must standout and be “Employer Friendly” to make a desirable impact.

  6. kelly dingee says:

    Tracy – I agree, but would never not reach out to a Software Engineer if they didn’t have recommendations. Someone once said to me that we live our best lives online. I think that’s true in the case of LinkedIn and a paragraph can get some of that across but wouldn’t keep me from pursuing talent in the sourcing process. Many people don’t play the game the way LinkedIn has laid it out.
    Linda- I’d go with electronic/electrical manufacturing.

  7. lorrwill says:

    I imagine some people are reluctant to give recommendations for the same reason a lot of employers are only giving bare bones references: litigation.
    Also some companies have policies against giving out anything the looks remotely like a reference. So if you get caught, you could be in trouble with your HR department.

  8. George says:

    My company just put out a policy involving social media and LinkedIn was specifically mentioned. The policy forbids employees from making recommendation on other employees. It seems they fear that it may in some way or another imply that the company (not the employees) would be liable for a potential false poor recommendation. They also forbid us from discussion of our industry if we state in our profile what company we work for.
    Have you seen this before? Is there something I can do to work around this and help recruiters?

  9. Elena says:

    Thanks Kelly. This was a great reminder to freshen up my profile. Does a recruiter look at how active a person is on linkedin? For example, the books and articles recommended, number of connections, etc. Also, is there a way for job seekers to reach out to recruiters?

  10. kelly dingee says:

    Hi Elena – Personally I think your level of activity on LinkedIn is not important. I’d check in regularly if you’re interested in finding a new job, but more to respond to inmails and requests.
    Connections and some activity can come into play. For example, I’m looking for a Marketing/New Media Manager right now. When I scan profiles I look to see what additional social media activity those people have.
    You can search for recruiters just as they can search for you, just use the advanced people search. A great idea if you don’t want your resume lost in the massive black hole of tracking systems.

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