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Carol Hauser
Try | Make Mistakes | Learn | Succeed

Optimizing your LinkedIn Profile to Increase Your Chances of Being Sourced

This blog post is a continuation of the previous one, where I explained the concept of sourcing in recruiting, shared a list with my main resources for sourcing international qualified professionals living in Israel (Olim Chadashim/New Immigrants to Israel), and offered some tips on how to improve your chances of getting sourced by a Recruiter/Sourcer. If you haven’t read it already, I recommend you do before reading this one, so that you can understand the context.

In this blog post, I’ll be focusing on the main tool for Sourcing and Recruiting today: LinkedIn Recruiter. Let’s first understand the importance of LinkedIn.

The importance of LinkedIn in today’s business scenario

If you are a qualified graduated professional with languages skills and business experience, you probably have a LinkedIn profile. You’re one of the +2M Linkedin users in Israel in January 2022 (24% of the country’s population). When you register your information, LinkedIn transforms it into data that is easily searchable. All the information from all users is consolidated, building a powerful database and offering it either for a fee (Premium) or free of charge.

Today, 6 people are hired through LinkedIn every minute (globally). About 95% of recruiters utilize LinkedIn as a major sourcing tool to find candidates. Are you In or are you out?

Since I began to understand the power of LinkedIn, in 2018, I became a big fan and a heavy user. Like many of you, I had only a basic profile, probably unsourceable. Since then, I have improved my profile many times. I studied everything from how to create a good LinkedIn profile, to how to post and engage with your network. Many hours in front of the computer, self-learning! The learning never stops because LinkedIn is always changing its algorithms. Now, I know that my profile is sourceable. I’ll share my main lessons learned to make your LinkedIn profile more findable by Recruiters/Sourcers further in this blog post.

You must be thinking: “why should she care if her profile is sourceable when she has a good job?”. My personal reasons are a bit different than average people. Since 2018, I’ve been building my personal brand and using LinkedIn to network and share interesting content I think my connections will enjoy. Building your reputation online is a very good strategy to stand out in the crowd while looking for a job, among other reasons. This will be the subject of another blog post.

I could keep writing about the importance of LinkedIn, but that isn’t the goal of the post. This post also isn’t another ‘How To Create A Kickass Linkedin Profile’ blog post. I won’t write about the importance of having a picture in your profile or how to write a good headline. That’s is also important, but you can find many tutorials to help you with that.

This is a blog post that explains which are the top fields and features Recruiters/Sourcers use to find and approach relevant candidates on LinkedIn Recruiter.

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The main sections I’ll be exploring in this blog post are:

  1. Connections
  2. Country/Region
  3. Open to work
  4. Contact Info
  5. Experience
  6. Education
  7. Languages
  8. Skills
  9. Groups

After walking you through each one of the sections listed above, I’ll also show how you can measure and improve your LinkedIn profile to make it even more findable by Recruiters/Sourcers.

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1. Connections

LinkedIn is all about connections – the more you have, the better (+500 connections is the recommended). However, relevancy is also considered, so make sure you connect with people relevant to you, such as targeted future managers, peers, recruiters and sourcers, among others. I wrote a few tips on how to connect with people on LinkedIn and get more responses from them in a previous post.

When sourcing using LinkedIn, Recruiters/Sourcers first see their closest connections (1st and 2nd – in case you’re not familiar with connection degrees in LinkedIn, read about them here). This means that if you have few connections, LinkedIn will rank you last in search results.

2. Country/Region

This field is very important for people who have moved countries. Yes, remote jobs have become more popular. But most of the people I’ve been talking about recruiting in Israel are hiring local employees. So, if you’re in Israel, make sure to change your location.

3. Open to work

If you’re looking for a new job and aren’t using this feature already, you may be losing opportunities. You don’t need to add the ‘Open to work’ badge or share a post with your LinkedIn connections (although it is highly recommended to do so). But you must have this feature turned on.

When sourcing for candidates, Recruiters/Sourcers filter profiles ‘Open to work’. The convention is that those people are more likely to reply to a recruiters’ message compared to those who don’t have this feature on. It’s also important to accept and reply to recruiters’ messages because the AI behind it is measuring you. Here’s a step by step on how to use this feature.

When enabling this feature, you’ll have to decide if to share only with Recruiters or with all LinkedIn members. In case you decide to share with all members, LinkedIn offers you a template asking for your network’s support. I suggest you make this template more personal, adding at least the name of positions you’re looking for and in which region of Israel. If you speak more than English and Hebrew, also add this information to the message. The same if you’re an English native speaker. The more information you share, the higher the chances of your message being read by someone relevant.

4. Contact Info

In ‘Contact Info’, LinkedIn gives you the option of adding your mobile phone, personal email and related websites (personal and professional), among other options. LinkedIn is, however, concerned with users’ privacy and only shares this information with your first connections.

Being easy to contact is the main key to be successfully sourced by a Recruiter/Sourcer. Timing is also crucial. Therefore, the quicker we can contact you, the higher your chances of being chosen for the position. As I mentioned before, many people lost out on being sourced because they weren’t responsive to my attempts to reach them.

In order to become more reachable to Recruiters sourcing, I suggest adding your contact info on your ‘About’ section (not explained in this post, but you can read more about this section here). If you’re concerned with safety, you can also create a personal website and add a contact section (you can easily create a website using Wix or Elementor for free). I’ve seen people doing this and it’s great when you can easily speak with the potential candidate.

5. Experience

The four most important information are: position name, years of experience, company name and industry.

  • Position name: there are some similarities in position names among similar companies. Find the one or two that best fit your skill set and adapt the name of the positions you held back then, in your home country, to a similar position available in Israel (or to the same name of the position you’re aiming to achieve).
  • Years of experience: LinkedIn automatically calculates your seniority level by the years of experience in all your previous positions. Recruiters use this filter A LOT! We can filter by seniority (entry, senior, manager, director are some of the options) or by years of experience (in numbers and within a specific range).
  • Company name: if you worked for a global company or a multinational, make sure you select one of the options offered by LinkedIn when adding the company’s name (check the company’s logo to make sure you’re connecting your profile to the correct company). In case the company rebrands, the name in your LinkedIn profile will also be automatically changed.
  • Industry: LinkedIn uses industry information to provide more relevant recommendations. My opinion is that the options to choose from aren’t the best ones. To set the correct industry for each position I held, I checked my company’s LinkedIn page and then selected the same one for that specific work experience (you can see the examples of the last two companies I worked for below).

Golden tip 1!

Turn off the network notification alert. This way, you can change/update anything in your ‘Experience’ section without sharing this with your entire network.

6. Education

People don’t give much attention to the ‘Education’ section, but it’s important to add the name of the school you went to. When I was sourcing international sales professionals living in Israel and from a specific region, one of the strings I used for narrowing my search was the school they went to.

Again, when adding the school’s name, make sure you select one of the options offered by LinkedIn (check the school’s logo to make sure you’re connecting your profile to the correct school).

7. Languages

Many people that immigrated to Israel, had a LinkedIn profile back in their home country. Upon arrival in Israel, they just translate the content of their LinkedIn profile to English, change languages general settings and forget to change the ‘Language’ section to English. When sourcing, Recruiters/Sourcers search for the specific language in English (example: Portuguese and not Português, or Spanish and not Español).

If this is your case (go on, check your LinkedIn profile!), what you need to do is manually delete the languages you speak (written in your local language) and select them again, this time in English. It’s very important that you also choose your proficiency level (native, professional, and limited working proficiency, for example).

Your ‘Languages’ section should look something similar to this screenshot:

8. Skills

This is a very important field for Recruiters/Sourcers to source, but unfortunately people don’t maximize its use. Some people learn new skills and evolve with time in their technical knowledge, but forget to update it in the ‘Skills’ section.

My suggestion to help you choose the best skills for the job you’re aiming for is to RESEARCH. Perform a simple search for people currently working in the position you’re targeting. Check the skills they chose and see which of them matches your knowledge/expertise.

And don’t forget to revisit this section every 6 months or so to make sure you have it updated – looking for a job or not.

9. Groups

For sourcing, the LinkedIn Groups you joined also influence your rank on search results (like Connections, explained previously). Furthermore, there’s a small “secret” about Groups that most people don’t know.

Golden tip 2!

You can message anyone in a mutual group you’re in, even if you’re not a 1st connection to the person or have a Premium account!

Below is a list of the main groups for networking/searching for jobs in Israel, on LinkedIn:

After being accepted by the group admins, go to the ‘Members’ page and look for the name of the person you would like to speak to (you can only search for their names, not the name of the companies they work for or their position name). Click on the ‘Message’ button and bingo! You’ll be able to send that person a message without the 300 characters limitation of the personal note for invitations and without paying for a Premium account! Isn’t this tip amazing?

Measuring and correcting your LinkedIn profile

Did you know that you can measure if your profile is sourceable and if people are searching for your profile with the correct keywords? This tool can help you improve your profile every now and then to make it even more findable.

How? You have 2 options:

1. LinkedIn offers you a weekly report – every week, you’ll see a notification on how often your profile appeared in search results, like the screenshot below:

2. You can check this report anytime in your profile (a quite new feature), as you can see below:

The report is really insightful, especially as it shows you which keywords were used when your profile was found. If you see that the used keywords aren’t reflecting the kind of positions you’re looking for, it’s time to revisit your profile and make some changes.

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Hopefully, you found this blog post informative and enjoyable for you. If you learn anything new from this article, please let me know by commenting!

About the Author
Carol was born and raised in Brazil. She has a BA in Business and MBA Finance. She had spent her professional career working as a business consultant there. In 2015, she decided to make Aliyah and try a new life in Israel. After two years of experience working for Netafim (an Israeli manufacturer of irrigation equipment, pioneer in drip irrigation technology, considered as 'low-tech'), she still found it difficult to land her second meaningful job in Israel with no technical background. In 2018, she initiated her path into the digital world to stand out in the crowd. She started blogging in the 'The Times of Israel', attended networking events and kept reskilling herself. This is how she landed her first position as Talent Acquisition & Employer Branding at Nayax. She also was interviewed and featured in Israel's leading women's magazine, La-Isha (The Woman, in Hebrew), as one of five examples of women who had no coding experience nor any background in the high-tech scene in Israel, but they did it anyway. In this blog, she shares her knowledge and practical tools to help all the other job seekers. “What you keep to yourself you lose, what you give away, you keep forever.” - Axel Munthe
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