We all know how volatile the hiring landscape has been for tech professionals in the past few years. In 2021 we saw one of the most heated job markets of all time, rapidly followed just one year later by a 649% increase in redundancies – the highest since the dot com bubble burst back in the early 2000s. All of this means competition for the best jobs is more intense than ever, and if you’re a tech job seeker in the current climate, you might be finding yourself feeling a little disillusioned and dejected. Even if you’re qualified for a role and have great experience, you may still be finding it hard to make the cut. That’s where the power of differentiating yourself online comes in.
Without a doubt, LinkedIn is one of the best tools available for job seekers. Just take a look at these stats:
- Around 72% of recruiters use LinkedIn when hiring new talent
- Over 67 million companies are on LinkedIn
- Six people are hired through LinkedIn every minute!
All of these figures point to one thing: if you’re not making the most of the platform, you’re missing a trick. So, let’s run down our top five tips to stand out to tech recruiters on LinkedIn in 2024.
Show off your technical skills
Often, recruiters will skim profiles to find candidates with the skills their clients are looking for. It’s your job to make those skills easily noticeable and compelling.
There are a few ways to do this:
- Integrate your skills into your headline. This might be an especially good tactic if, for example, you’re a developer specialising only in one programming language or you work in a niche area like DevRel.
- Use the ‘experience’ section on your LinkedIn profile to highlight the skills you acquired and used in your present and previous jobs. You can add a maximum of 50 to your profile.
- Fill in the ‘skills’ section. The great thing about this option is that other people you’ve worked with can endorse your expertise, too.
- Take a skills assessment. LinkedIn offers skill assessments and mini-quizzes designed to validate your proficiency in various areas. When you pass an assessment, you earn a badge on your profile – a brilliant way to stand out in a competitive job market!
Don’t forget to make sure that key words for your sector are easy to spot on your page, as this is what recruiters will be skimming for.
Take advantage of LinkedIn’s lesser-known features
If you’re on the hunt for a new role but you’re already in a role, it poses a dilemma – how do you let recruiters and employers know you’re looking without also spilling the beans to your current company? Luckily, LinkedIn has a special feature which secretly lets recruiters know you’re open to being approached. Click the ‘open to’ button underneath your profile picture, click ‘finding a new job’, then click ‘recruiters only’.
You can also create a custom URL for your profile, which makes it easier for recruiters to identify your profile and connect with you. Plus, it gives your profile and more professional and branded touch. To change yours, head to your profile, click the pencil, head to ‘edit contact info’ click the profile URL, and click ‘edit your custom URL’ on the top right of the page.
When you’re embarking on the job seeking process, there are a couple of other cool features to take advantage of too. For example, you can save up to four different versions of your CV, and use LinkedIn’s interview preparation tools to enhance your readiness for the big day!
Show off your projects and achievements
Sometimes it’s not enough to just talk about the great work you’ve done, you need to be able to show it off, too! Luckily, LinkedIn gives you all the tools you need in order to be able to do this effectively. Even if you don’t have an ‘end product’ to show in the same way that, for example, a web developer might, you can still showcase things like presentations, reports, or flowcharts.
Just head to your profile, click ‘add profile section’, and under the ‘recommended’ tab you’ll see ‘add projects’. Here, you can add descriptions of projects you’ve worked on, the skills it took to complete them, along with links or various media formats.
If you work in an area which requires you to be a great communicator like developer advocacy or product management, it’s also well worth taking advantage of LinkedIn creator mode. This is a special profile setting which gives you access to additional features which can help you extend your influence and grow an audience. For example, you can add a ‘featured’ section to your profile which draws attention to your best performing posts, and add hashtags to your profile to allow you target audience to find and follow you more easily.
Ask for recommendations
LinkedIn recommendations are like a snapshot of what it’s really like to work with you; almost like references, but less formal. They’re displayed in your profile in the ‘recommendations’ section, and can be seen by anyone who comes across your profile. Recommendations are especially important for tech workers, as they can be a great way of demonstrating soft skills that complement your technical expertise.
Reach out to managers and colleagues you’ve worked with over the years and ask for a mutual recommendation exchange (people will be far more likely to leave one for you if they’ll be getting one in return!) Don’t forget to include a mix of people across the corporate hierarchy if you can, as you want to show how you work well with a range of experiences and skillsets.
Join relevant groups
It’s a good idea to engage in tech communities, forums, or discussion groups related to your area of expertise. Not only will this increase your network and visibility whilst helping you gain new knowledge, recruiters will often tap into these communities to find candidates looking for work who might be a good match for open positions.
Another smart move is to actively participate in discussions within these groups. Don’t just be a passive member; share your insights, ask questions, and contribute to the conversation.
To find relevant groups on LinkedIn, simply type some key words into the search bar, filter the results by ‘groups’ at the top of the page, and check out what’s available. And if you don’t find a group that’s right for you, why not create one?
Remember, LinkedIn is more than just a social network; it’s a powerful tool that, when used effectively, can open doors to exciting career opportunities. Stay proactive, stay visible, and make every aspect of your profile count.
At GR4, we work with some of the most exciting and innovative tech companies across Europe and the US, and are always looking to expand our network. You can search all our positions here, or get in touch with a member of our specialist team for a confidential discussion.