With over 800M people on LinkedIn, creating a LinkedIn profile has become second nature to most working professionals. The expectation of having a profile on this platform to network, gain industry knowledge, build business, close sales, and be found for employment opportunities is often a given.
Despite the best intentions, however, updating it can sometimes fall through the cracks. Once created, many LinkedIn members will not update the information again until they have begun a job search. While that is a great time for a profile update, it may be years before that time comes again and an incomplete or stagnant profile can prevent you from being approached for opportunities that you may not have known existed.
LinkedIn has well-published statistics on how updating your profile helps to boost performance in its algorithm. When your profile is seen by more people, whether through intentional searches or as part of their suggested connections, or when your content is featured in their feed, it improves your visibility and strengthens your personal brand.
It’s always a strong practice to keep your profile optimized and ready for all contingencies. Neglecting the updates as they occur can cause you to forget about adding them at all or as multiple ones occur, can build to the point where it seems too overwhelming to tackle so you just don’t.
With all of this in mind, I offer a broad list of recommendations of when it’s time to make a profile update to keep it current and easy to manage.
It’s time to update your LinkedIn profile when you
-Receive impressive grades or scores on school-related courses or standardized testing (ie., SAT/ACT).
-Complete an internship.
-Graduate from college.
-Get a new job.
-Leave a job.
-Are looking for a new job.
-Want to test the confidential job market.
-Are willing to be 100% visible about a job search.
-Complete a LinkedIn Learning course or skills assessment.
-Have been promoted.
-Change industries or job targets.
-Have new responsibilities added to your job description.
-Gain new professional skills.
-Begin or complete volunteering.
-Change your name.
-Want to share or change your personal pronouns.
-Have won an award.
-Are granted a patent.
-Are participating in a project that has industry-relevance and strengthens your professional value.
-Join a professional organization.
-Receive an industry-related certification.
-Move to a new city.
-Change your job target to/from remote work.
-Participated in a unique professional or personal experience that adds to your value offering and is reflective of your personal brand.
-Launch a new business or side hustle.
-Have been published.
-Have a new professional headshot taken.
-Create a dynamic new banner picture that supports your personal branding.
-Discover that new platform functionality is available that could improve the optimization of your profile.
-Recognize its been way to long since the last time you updated it.
-Don’t remember what your account password it.
-See a well-developed Featured section on someone else’s profile and think it’s time to get
-Begin giving webinars or producing video content.
-Complete speaking engagements.
-Experienced a career break.
-Come out of retirement.
Establishing a monthly or quarterly routine can be a great way to remind yourself it is time to evaluate the status of your LinkedIn profile and make any relevant changes you may have missed since the previous time. Use the first or last day of the month as a trigger to remind yourself to schedule this bit of professional hygiene. Like updating your resume, you may not think about until you need it, so use this list as a reference to help you stay on top of it and ready for whatever may your way.
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