Dear LinkedIn: A LinkedIn Profile Make a Resume Doth Not. (Love, Jessica…)

Jessica Lee Jessica Lee, Job Boards, Working With Recruiters

Dear LinkedIn,I’ve been reading lately about your crazy growth. Holy batman! 115.8 million members. That’s nuts.
Congrats. And your recent IPO also made me proud – very proud. I am a fan. I am a 100%-completed-profile member with 1500+ connections. And, in fact, I was member number 302,351, joining the site in the wee stages of your growth… well, wee stages, relatively speaking. 300K people before me is no small number. But I will always sing your praises. You keep my glass continually… half full at least.

Minimally, half full. Because despite my love for ya, you do make moves at times that make me raise a brow. And I will tell you when I’m a little skeptical. Like when you unveiled a new feature recently that I am just a little unsure of… that little ‘ole universal-apply-with-LinkedIn button. To which I keep seeing you add the tag line, “Get hired faster.” Oy.

Now before you tell me I’m just not open to change and that LinkedIn is the future for job seekers (which I could buy into, I don’t discount that notion completely)… hear me out.

I’m a Jobvite customer, which means on our career site, I’ve had the option since we launched with Jobvite this year to allow applicants to include a link to their LinkedIn profile with their application materials. Did I know the value of this when I turned on the feature? Not really. I thought it was interesting though. And as we’ve dug in and used Jobvite more and more, I’ve found that I’ve liked giving applicants the option to include their LI profile link in their application materials because if I like what I see in their resumes – IF I LIKE WHAT I SEE IN THEIR RESUME – then, THEN, I can quickly gander at their profile to cross check roles held/dates of employment with their resume. And if I really like what I see, then I also like to click over to their LI profiles to see who we might know in common, whether they include social media profile links, and any other info that might help me get a sense of who they are beyond the resume itself.

But it’s not as if I’m not ready to let applicants stop submitting resumes and just send me their LinkedIn profiles. Job seekers – you hear that? Your LI profile is not a substitute for a resume. Yet. Because as an employer… when you initially send your LI profile over to me, all I actually get within my ATS are your dates of employment, recommendations if you’ve got ‘em… and that’s about it. No descriptions of your positions held. No summary of who you are. It’s bare bones, what I get of your LI profile. To learn more, it’s extra clicking. And that’s just not good enough for me. So I still rely on your resume, and that’s first and foremost for me for applicants who come through via our careers site.

So then my LinkedIn friends, there’s more. Along with that “Apply with LinkedIn” button you’re putting out there… you add this tag line of “Get hired faster.” What exactly is it about applying with your LinkedIn profile that will get an applicant hired faster? Especially when as an employer I get bare bones profile info? Isn’t “Get hired faster” a bit of a misnomer? So much so I had to ask my lovely friends at Jobvite to get that tagline removed from our career site. I’d hate to mislead an applicant in any way that they’ll get hired faster by including their LI profile in their application package.

Job boards sometimes peeve me for making it too easy for a lazy job seeker to apply to too many jobs in one fell swoop without thinking through whether they are qualified, whether the company could be a good fit for them. And LinkedIn? I’d hate for you to get caught in that messy mix. Make the job search process easier – yes. But help the job seeker to be thoughtful in their search. Ya hear? Keep rolling out the enhancements though. Can’t wait to see what you have up your sleeve next for job seekers and employers.