How fit is your profile?

Have you looked at your profile lately? Not the one in the mirror; although if that one isn’t looking up to par, you might be interested in one of these 13 digital fitness tools for getting into physical shape.

Skills: wanted, offered

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What about your professional profile? Have you looked at that lately?

LinkedIn, the leading professional social networking site, has added some great new features that can help catapult you to the head of the pack.

New Profile Sections

LinkedIn has added several new sections to give more structure to your profile. Two of these sections are particularly useful to Information Technology professionals: Certifications, and Skills. You might also be interested in the Projects section and the Patents section. To add these sections, you must be in the profile edit mode (Profile/Edit Profile). Immediately under the grey box you’ll see an orange New tag, and +Add Sections. Select the sections you want to add, then click Return to Profile. The sections won’t appear on your profile until you begin to populate them. Drag and drop the new sections to rearrange the order on your profile.

Skills & Expertise

Have you ever really thought about the skills you have that make you so successful in your field? If you’ve been working for any length of time, it’s possible that you no longer think about the most rudimentary tools of your trade. Employers, on the other hand, will be looking for web developers who use HTML and CSS. “What?” you might ask. “Of course I know these– I’m a web designer!” What may seem obvious to you is not necessarily obvious to hiring managers or HR. Try using LinkedIn’s Skills tool to develop the skills section of your profile (More/Skills). The tool will allow you to either select skills from a list or add skills using natural language (very useful for soft skill areas). Don’t forget to rate your skill level and supply the number of years of experience with each.

Certifications

When you add the certification section, a form pops up, prompting you to fill in relevant information about your certification. What a great way to track your certification status! Is it time to update a few of them? Or certify in new skill areas?

Resume Builder

Need an up-to-date resume in a hurry? LinkedIn has added a push button Resume Builder that pulls the information from your profile and publishes it to a ready-to-print resume template. You can choose from a number of templates; select the one that shows your information to the best advantage for the position.

Adding these sections will organize your professional profile, spiff up your personal brand, and make it easier for recruiters and employers to find you.

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