With recruitment moving online, can you afford not to have a polished LinkedIn profile with the power to catch the eye of recruiters and potential employers? Creating a LinkedIn profile is easy, as our free online guide shows. Getting it right takes a little more patience and thought. As you put together a LinkedIn profile, here are some questions we suggest you consider.

Watch our video offering five top tips on putting together an effective LinkedIn profile.

Am I projecting the right image?

Unlike many other social networks, LinkedIn is very much a business network. So how do you want to be seen professionally? Your photo is part of this image, so ensure it is a good quality head and shoulders shot, dressed as you would be for work. Save your holiday and party photos for other networks!

Does it tell people what I want to do?

Tell the truth, but make sure the truth works for you. Most people put their current job title into the “professional headline” but you don’t have to. Especially if your job title does not describe what you do, you may be better off offering a brief description of the type of work you do. If you are job hunting and particularly if you are currently out of work, it may serve you well to say “seeking” or “looking for” in the professional headline, so that you show up on any searches against these words.

How will people find me?

LinkedIn is heavily search optimised and people will generally look for potential job candidates using key words. Make sure you have filled in all the sections fully. Also, think about whether there are additional sections you can add. These might include “Languages”, “Volunteer Experience and Causes” or “Publications” to name but a few of the options on offer.

Most of all, make sure you make the most of the “Skills and Expertise” section. You can list up to 50 skills, so think about all the skills, hard and soft, that you can offer an employer. Get this right so that you show up in the right searches.

Who am I writing this for?

Everyone! If a CV is about offering a tailored document to a specific audience, you should bear in mind that an online profile may be seen by anyone. So it needs to speak to all your audiences. This does not mean it should be all encompassing – if anything, it should be punchier, conveying the key highlights of your career clearly and succinctly. Remember, too, that “everyone” also includes your boss, so if you are employed (and wish to remain so), have a care.

Am I proud of this profile?

Would you be happy for someone, a stranger in gift of a job or a dream contract perhaps, to look at your profile? Would you be happy to send the URL to someone by way of introduction? If you cannot truthfully answer “yes” to both of those questions, then it is time to get to work.

And finally:

Why should I get a professional to do this for me?

We have the skills and the know-how to quickly create a profile you can be proud of by putting together a bespoke plan to meet your needs. We can also offer you the support to give you the confidence to make ongoing updates yourself.

So if you want to take our advice, get in touch with us today for a FREE LinkedIn profile review and see what we can do for you.

For further helpful hints, visit our handy hints and tips section.