Everyone has been on, heard of, or simply looked at LinkedIn.  Joining this platform is a step everybody knows is important when starting a career search-but why? It merges the functions of job search websites and personal profile websites, into one. It is ultimately an extension to your resume, while also acting as a virtual one. There may be a misconception that the platform is used by only those searching for jobs, however, many people from freelancers, to students, to employers and even the big shots such as Bill Gates have LinkedIn profiles. This makes it a powerful networking tool as well. 


What it has to offer: 


With more than 600 million profiles, LinkedIn supplies networking opportunities along with job opportunities so those on the hunt can find openings, company employees or managers, and even recruiters. Even when applying to job postings elsewhere, the hiring managers are still looking the candidates up on LinkedIn. 


While recruiters and hiring managers may look people up on LinkedIn, the street runs both ways. You can look up company reviews, requirements, and more to help them further your search and gather information.  


Your own professional profile: 


Besides the many networking and job opportunities LinkedIn brings, it is a platform to build your own professional profile or brand. Marketing yourself to employers is key in landing those dream jobs, and LinkedIn helps with this. The features LinkedIn has made it similar to a social media profile, but on a professional level.  


Being able to add a professional headshot, location, and having the capabilities to message other users not only makes the chance for networking greater, but also makes your chance to stand out greater.  


Updating your profile to contain experience and skills that fit in a certain industry, increase the chance of a big recruiter or company finding your profile while they use LinkedIn. The platform provides leverage that companies need when trying to fill their positions. 


What you are missing out on: 


Without a LinkedIn profile, you may miss out on the handful of great opportunities this platform has to offer.  


There may be a company searching for candidates with the exact skill set as you, however, without utilizing your presence on this platform, you would never be aware of this opportunity. 


Or say you are the one seeking a service, there are thousands of businesses and even freelancers on LinkedIn offering the services you may need. Without being connected, you miss out on an array of talented people who could fulfill your needs. 


Still not convinced you’re missing out? Maybe an old colleague is searching for you to tell you about an opening within their company that they think you’d be great for-but they can’t find you on LinkedIn. Or what about those employers you submitted your resume to that just never got back to you? They won’t email you to say they couldn’t find your LinkedIn; they simply move forward with the candidates they could gain more insight on.  


So, the point is, LinkedIn is a staple to success in the professional world. The networking, the job postings, the opportunity to market yourself-all on LinkedIn.