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Why LinkedIn Is So Important to Your Job Search

Why is LinkedIn so important to your job search? Put yourself in the shoes of a hiring manager in today’s economy. Your company is going through tough economic times. Your HR department has been drastically downsized, and you’re being asked to find and recruit talent to fill your open positions — a task that you aren’t even compensated for.

Do you (A) pay a major job board $600 to $800 to post the job and get lots of spam and unqualified people applying, or (B) jump on LinkedIn for free and, using keywords that relate to the skills you need, find trusted people in your network?

Clearly, hiring managers prefer to leverage their social and professional networks to fill positions, and the highest-leverage social professional network is LinkedIn.

As with any social network, the power is not only having a compelling profile but also who you know, who those people know, and who those people know. Experienced networkers know that the best professional opportunities come from second- or even third-degree connections.

Consider these network statistics. If a persona has more than 880 first-degree connections, from those connections they could have access to more than 11 million people. This would make you more likely to have connections at companies you may want to work for and able to ask for referrals into those companies. Building your LinkedIn network to this capacity is a very reasonable goal for any job seeker.

Another compelling reason why LinkedIn is so important for your job search is that if you have a strong profile, you’re likely to rank on Google’s first results page when someone searches for your name. This fact makes a powerful LinkedIn profile the first step to building a strong online reputation.

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