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How To Use LinkedIn to Your Advantage

If you’re keen to learn job-hunting tactics, utilising LinkedIn is a must. Recent user statistics showcase its immense popularity - over 60% of the Netherlands’ population and almost 54% of UK inhabitants use it, with France and Germany not too far behind (42.1% and 19.1% respectively).

Knowing how to use LinkedIn to your advantage in your job search is a great way to get ahead of other candidates in the competitive Automotive Engineering industry. Many professionals have a profile on the site, but few people know how to be effective with LinkedIn.

What follows are actionable insights that will help you polish your LinkedIn presence, grow your professional network and even establish yourself in the thought leadership space.

Fuel Your Profile for Success

When learning how to be effective with LinkedIn, view your profile as your digital showroom, showcasing your Automotive Engineering expertise to potential employers.

Keeping your profile up to date and complete is crucial for ensuring it is always optimised. When recruiters and hiring managers search for candidates on LinkedIn, the site’s algorithm will only show profiles that are completed.

As your profile picture is the first impression you make, aim for something recent, realistic, professional and positive (i.e. smile). Use a plain background and focus on just your head and shoulders. LinkedIn has some further tips to assist.

The next visual element is your background photo. Choose something relevant to your Automotive Engineering career, perhaps highlighting a passion area. Then you’ll have 220 characters to craft a captivating headline that emphasises your specialisation and unique value. Use phrases that have a ‘tagline’ feel. For example – “Automotive Engineering Innovator | Driven by Cutting-Edge Technologies".

Endorsements and recommendations confirm your skills and experience. The former shows you have the right skills and are endorsed by people in the industry. The latter backs this up with personal testimonials from people you’ve worked with.

Endorsement tips

·        Add at least 10 skills that accurately reflect your experience

·        Order them according to the most in-demand skills (a professional recruiter can help here)

·        Endorse others’ skills - it’s a quick way to grow your own

Recommendations tips

·        Determine the most valuable people to reach out to for recommendations

·        Send a personalised request each time you ask

·        Thank them and reciprocate the gesture

Showcase Your Skills and Experience

The next key profile section is the ‘About’ area, where you can draw attention to your skills, experience and professional goals.

Begin with a hook – an attention-grabbing statement that summarises your expertise and passion for Automotive Engineering. For example, "Driven by a lifelong passion for Automotive Engineering, I specialise in pushing the boundaries of autonomous driving technology.”

Move on to highlight your most significant accomplishments and contributions, using evidence to back this up (insider tip from our expert recruiters – we love evidence!). Share specific projects, patents or research work that demonstrate your skills, quantifying wherever possible.

When tackling your ‘Experience’ section, focus on how you’ve helped the companies you’ve worked with, whilst highlighting your technical achievements and relevant projects.

Keep in mind the importance of keywords as this is what helps recruiters find your profile. Use relevant ones specific to your industry, for instance, ‘connected car’ and ‘e-mobility’.

Build Your Professional Networks

One of the surest ways to supercharge your LinkedIn profile is to build your connections within the Automotive Engineering world. By actively fuelling your network, you'll increase your chances of being on the radar of potential employers and mentors.

Build your professional networks with industry leaders, professionals and other thought leaders, as well engineering groups, industry associations, alumni networks, automotive publications or engineering forums. Connecting with relevant people also boosts your profile’s search optimisation – the more connections you have, the more likely you are to appear in more search results.

Connecting with people can be as simple as liking posts and engaging in discussions. Conversing with industry peers can also help you learn job-hunting tactics that work best for your goals.

Providing access to a broad network of employers is among the major reasons why recruitment consultants are more effective in a job search than searching online. Recruiters, however, do look for candidates with strong LinkedIn profiles they can showcase to their clients, so treating your LinkedIn as your calling card is a strategic move.

Become A Thought Leader

Positioning yourself as a thought leader in the Automotive Engineering industry will bolster your professional brand.

Think about ways you can create content to demonstrate your expertise, such as publishing short articles or blog posts on LinkedIn's publishing platform. Other ideas include:

·        Post about upcoming events or interesting industry happenings (articles, infographics, images, videos, quotes)

·        Share valuable insights (particularly news about companies you follow and would love to work for)

·        Post industry or job-related questions, seeking advice

·        Post job-specific tips that might help others

A few years ago, LinkedIn introduced a ‘Featured’ section, giving users a way to showcase work samples and noteworthy achievements by adding images, videos or infographics. Take full advantage of this by adding projects, papers or presentations, as well as linking out to a personal website and LinkedIn posts or articles you’ve written.

Further Job-Hunting Support

LinkedIn offers several useful ways for Automotive Engineering professionals to portray a positive image. But much of this requires an extensive amount of work, and this is where the support of a professional Automotive Engineering recruitment agency can be of great benefit.

Here at Fields and Rudd, we have many years of experience in carefully curating LinkedIn profiles, as we understand how important it is as a recruitment tool. We’ve helped countless candidates rev up their LinkedIn profile to attract the right attention - it’s just one of the reasons why recruitment consultants are more effective than going it alone. We have an extensive range of open positions, as well as a deep network you can tap into to find your next role. If you’d like extra support in your job search, please connect with one of our recruitment specialists.