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How to Use LinkedIn to Find Your Next Job LinkedIn is an incredible tool for job seekers.

By Alex Freund

This story originally appeared on Personal Branding Blog

Denys Prykhodov | Shutterstock.com

If you're in transition and looking for a new job or you're contemplating changing jobs, there's nothing more powerful than learning how to be efficient and effective on LinkedIn. Being listed on LinkedIn is a must. A study by Microsoft revealed that 70 percent of employers have rejected job candidates because of information they found online about those candidates. Yet, the same study suggests that 85 percent of employers say a positive online reputation influences their decision. Those are pretty convincing numbers.

Related: 9 Things to Consider Before Accepting a New Job

Here are some facts:

  • Recruiters and employers prefer dealing with applicants they can check out and trust.
  • People spend more time on social media than on e-mail. LinkedIn is in the social media for business.
  • The internet can make or break your image.

Related: 4 Tips for Using Resume Keywords

The power of LinkedIn lies in the fact that you can connect with people who influence decision-making regarding whom to hire. In turn, you too can research the company you're targeting, the hiring manager there and even the culture of the company. Sixty percent of hiring decisions are based on a candidate's fit with the company's culture.

By joining professional and alumni groups on LinkedIn, you can participate in online discussions as well as answer questions, thus becoming prominent -- and even possibly viewed as an expert. (Companies love hiring experts.) Additionally, recruiters scour professional groups in search of experts.

When you're in transition, it's important to know the right people but also important that they know you and that they get reminded of what you're looking for. Therefore, it's advisable to invite people to connect with you on LinkedIn. When you send an invitation, personalize your message, address the person by name, include a reminder about your commonality or mention how you came across them and ask whether they would be willing to connect with you.

Related: 7 Tips to Improve Your Interviewing Skills

When looking for opportunities, go to the home page and type in the search field the name of a company of interest. Perform an Advanced search via the filters available on the top. Then customize the screen to your circumstances. From that list, select and invite the people you want to connect with.

Alex Freund, known as the “landing expert,” supports job seekers into employment. He is known for making people feel comfortable when interviewing. 

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