One of the most sobering statistics I put in front of job seekers is this one:

Recruiters will decide whether they want to interview you or not in 6 seconds.

How long is 6 seconds? Let’s put it another way. The average GIF you find online is anywhere from 2 to 6 seconds long. So when a recruiter starts scanning your LinkedIn profile, you’ve got the timespan of a GIF or two to entice them. Here’s how to make every single millisecond count in your favor.

 

Select a professional headshot for your profile picture

This should be a clear shot of you from your shoulders up. Your face should be the only prominent thing in the photo. Pick a picture that makes you look friendly and approachable–but along the lines of “I’d like to have a conversation with this person” not “I want to go to a nightclub with this person.”

 

Plug keywords into your headline that make your qualifications, industry, and job title clear

After your name, the headline is the first thing recruiters will read about you. Here, you want to include keywords that are job- and industry-specific. Keywords help recruiters identify whether or not you’re an appropriate candidate for a job they’re filling.

 

Update your location

It can be incredibly difficult to get a job in a location you’re not currently living in, especially if you don’t have a lot of experience and are unlikely to be offered relocation assistance. That’s why you should always update your location when you move–or if you’re thinking of moving. It’s an easy detail to overlook, but it can close doors that would otherwise be open to you.

 

Use bullet points instead of dense paragraphs in your LinkedIn Summary and Experience sections

If you’re discussing accomplishments, credentials, or responsibilities, arrange them in a list to make them easier for recruiters to identity quickly. And while we’re at it, your bullet points should not be complete sentences or paragraphs unto themselves. Be concise!

 

Revise job titles to make your work experience self-explanatory

Sometimes, organizations opt for quirky job titles that don’t tell anyone outside of that one, specific company what it is you do. If you have job titles like that on your profile, revise them so that they accurately align with industry standards.

 

Include your education, regardless of when you received your degree

You don’t have to include your graduation year on your LinkedIn profile to add your educational background. If the fear of age discrimination is keeping you from adding it, put that worry aside. Many recruiters and companies want to hire alumni and local graduates, and this is an easy way to appeal to that crowd.

 

Next steps

Got these down? That’s great! Follow Coach Ron Nash here on LinkedIn for more articles to help you stand out from your competition on LinkedIn.