LinkedIn is one of the most powerful social media platforms for professionals. If you’re about to start your study journey or are currently studying, make sure to keep an up-to-date LinkedIn profile; it’s a great way to build industry connections, track all of your experience, and be ready to go when you eventually start job-searching. If you’ve already finished your studies and want to gain experience in your field, an optimised profile on LinkedIn is essential for success. The good news is we’ve got a few hacks to show you how easy it is.
Update your profile regularly
Your profile on LinkedIn is a reflection of you, and keeping it up-to-date sets you up for success. Start with a professional headshot image and create a short and powerful headline that highlights who you are and what you do. If you don’t have much professional experience, focus on your future ambitions and where you want to take your career. The most important thing is to build your profile as soon as possible and establish credibility in your field. Start today, and don’t look back!
Note all experiences – big and small
It’s a good idea to keep your LinkedIn gap-free. So, while you study, update your profile with details of your course and the modules you learn. If you are fluent in a second language, this will look powerful on your profile. If you take on side projects or volunteer work, this will be beneficial to add to your profile, too. Any experience is valuable, and potential employers will look favourably on the transferrable skills gained throughout your studies and work placements.
Connect with industry professionals and fellow students
If you haven’t already been networking on LinkedIn, well, now’s the time to start! Connect with your classmates, lecturers and tutors, and anyone you meet at industry events. If there are renowned industry professionals you haven’t met in person, don’t be afraid to send them a connection request and explain why you’re reaching out. Relationships you form on LinkedIn can often lead to opportunities down the line, so be brave and build your network ASAP.
Gain international presence
As an international student, you likely enjoy the experience of living abroad and the opportunities that arise in your adoptive country. LinkedIn is a great way to connect with professionals and companies across the globe. You can follow your dream company on LinkedIn and keep an eye on their channel for jobs. With LinkedIn at your fingertips, the world of job opportunities is your oyster.
Join LinkedIn Groups
Join groups on LinkedIn that will positively impact your career and expand your knowledge. Engage in conversations and contribute your opinion where possible. Utilising groups is a great way to connect with peers and learn new things. It’s a win-win!
Glowing LinkedIn recommendations hold weight with potential employers. So, if you have a strong professional relationship with someone you have worked or studied with, reach out and ask them to complete a recommendation for you. You can review your recommendations and ask for them to be tweaked before they go live on your profile. Remember, it’s good to show your appreciation to those who provide a recommendation, so return the favour or endorse them for some skills.
On LinkedIn, you can set your profile to show you are open to work where you can include the titles of the job you would like. You can also set your LinkedIn to email you relevant jobs as they become available. LinkedIn also has a smart feature that displays who in your network works at specific companies; this can be helpful if you need a referral from an employee to help get your foot in the door.
Prepare for interviews
LinkedIn is a fantastic tool when it comes to preparing for job interviews. You can deep-dive into the company you will interview with, look up their current employees, and get a feel for how the company operates. Take the time to review the profile of the person who will be interviewing you; maybe you can surprise them by calling out an achievement you noticed on their profile. Another great tip is to turn your LinkedIn profile on private mode, so the interviewer won’t realise you’ve been looking at their profile. Magic!
Share your unique perspective
As an international student, you no doubt have a unique perspective on living and studying in Australia, and looking for work. So, why not share it with your network? On LinkedIn, you have the ability to write posts, or you can go one step further and create in-depth articles on your experiences. Perhaps you developed some interesting insight into what it’s like to study remotely, or you want to offer your thoughts on the job application process in Australia compared to your home country. If you think it might interest your network, put your ideas into words – it shows you’re engaged with the platform and increases your visibility.
Create a LinkedIn habit
Set yourself an achievable goal to optimise your LinkedIn profile. Whether it’s connecting with a new person on LinkedIn each week, or sharing an article that inspired you from an industry thought leader or your learnings with your wider network, being active on the platform will pay off.
The internet is full of fantastic resources filled with hacks to set you up for success on LinkedIn. The best place to start is, well, to simply begin. Build your profile and connections and be open to the opportunities that come your way.