Just like Facebook and Twitter, everyone is starting to get a LinkedIn account. But before you jump on the bandwagon, it’s good to know what you’re getting yourself into.

LinkedIn is a social networking site designed to allow people to create their own professional profile and connect with professionals.

Your profile contains your work and volunteer experience, education information, recommendations from people you’ve worked with, your specialities and even languages you speak! Have other social media networks? LinkedIn can connect your profile to Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, and more. And the best part: it’s free!

When creating your profile, keep in mind these 3 tips to make your profile stand out from the rest.

1.    Quality not quantity: under each position, you don’t need to write down everything. 2-3 concise lines of what, how, and the results of your work will make your profile clean and readable.

2.   Profile picture: a picture speaks a thousand words and this will be the most eye-catching aspect on your profile. Pick a high-quality and professional photo so that you give your image a boost. A photo can also help differentiate your profile from others with a similar name.

3.    Unique URL: clean and professional to make it easy for others to remember your profile address. It’s under “Edit Profile”.

A detailed profile with a headshot photo and unique URL

Now you’re ready to connect to people you know and build your professional network. You can join Groups such as companies and clubs, search for jobs, and search for companies you’re interested in knowing more about.

Search and add companies and groups to a LinkedIn profile

There are a few ways to create new connections, which adds people you know and/or work with into your profile. Connections can be added by clicking the “Contacts” tab to add people from the company you have listed in your “Experience” section or by searching through your e-mail address. Alternatively, you can search your contacts’ name in the search bar. When you are viewing another person’s profile, on the right-hand side you can see how you are connected to that person. If that person is in your connections already, then he/she is your 1st Connection. If you both share a connection, then you are a 2nd connection. This helps managing relationships and your professional network.

Connections are added by the "Add Connections" button or Search Bar

LinkedIn also have a fantastic resume builder that easily lets you make professional and appealing resumes. It takes the content of your profile and transfer them onto a variety of templates of your choosing. You can also customize any section and aspect, including the font. Furthermore, LinkedIn saves several versions of your resume to suit your needs when applying for different positions.

If you’ve found our tips useful, feel free to post your profile and share your LinkedIn experiences in the comments section below!

– Eric Chow