LinkedIn can be a powerful networking tool if you know how to make the most of it. Through the platform, you can connect with other likeminded professionals in your network and extended network, read helpful news articles and career advice pieces, find and apply for jobs, and more. If you want to maximize your visibility on LinkedIn and appeal to hiring managers and clients, you should also make sure that your profile is up to speed.
The next time you're updating your resume and portfolio, be sure to give your LinkedIn a look to. Here are eight things that can make your LinkedIn profile seem outdated.
1. Your photo doesn't look like you anymore.
Make sure that you have an updated, professional headshot that actually looks like you. This way, when people go to search for you on LinkedIn, they'll have a better shot at finding your profile. It'll also just visually represent you better than an old photo.
2. You only have old work experiences listed.
Be sure to keep your LinkedIn profile up to date with all of your work experiences. It's easy to let LinkedIn fall to the wayside when you're wrapped up in a new job, busy getting yourself settled in. But keeping your profile updated with your current work experiences can help others know where to find you and what you're up to — like other potential hiring managers. Besides, you want your professional profile to reflect exactly who you are as a professional.
3. You haven't updated your experience descriptions.
Chances are that your role changes over time, especially if you've been in the same position for quite a while. You might take on some new responsibilities, or stats on how you've helped the company or your team grow may have changed. So be sure that you're keeping your experience descriptions current, too.
4. You haven't updated your skills.
Maybe you've learned new skills over time — or you've lost that college Spanish you could once speak at least conversationally. Make sure your skills sections is updated, just like your experiences.
5. Your contact information is no longer accurate.
Your contact information is how people get in touch with you. If you no longer check the email you have listed, people won't be able to reach you.
6. Your summary no longer defines you.
If you do include a summary on your LinkedIn, make sure that whatever you write is still accurate. For example, you don't want to call yourself a marketing pro if you no longer work in marketing. Likewise, you don't want to write that you're seeking a job in public relations if you've already got a job.
7. Your listed interests no longer interest you.
LinkedIn allows you to list interests on your profile — everything from podcasts you love to groups you're interested in to companies you want to follow. Make sure that your interests actually still interest you. If you were once into blogging, so you followed a style blogging group, but you don't blog anymore and have no care to continue, you might want to clear it from your interests. Again, your profile should reflect who you are, what you do and what you want to do — nothing else.
8. You're no longer involved in your listed organizations.
LinkedIn also allows you to list organizations in which you're involved. If you no longer participate with an organization, you might want to clear it — unless, of course, you spent a good chunk of your time with that organization and still identify with it.
AnnaMarie Houlis is a feminist, a freelance journalist and an adventure aficionado with an affinity for impulsive solo travel. She spends her days writing about women’s empowerment from around the world. You can follow her work on her blog, HerReport.org, and follow her journeys on Instagram @her_report, Twitter @herreport and Facebook.