How To Use LinkedIn To Find a Job

interviewee handing interviewer paper resume

Like many college students or newly graduated alumni, you’re probably looking for a gateway into your desired career. Whether you are looking for internship experience or are ready for that first entry-level position in your career path, it can be tough to know where to begin.

This article will cover how to use LinkedIn to help you find a job, while expanding your knowledge of job search tools. 

In This Article:

Embarking on the job search journey can be both exciting and challenging. In this section, we'll explore strategies and tips to help you navigate and start your job search.

Questions To Ask Yourself When Looking for a Job

There is value in finding a job that aligns with your interests and passions. But to find that job, you need to start by asking yourself a few questions and reflecting on your personality. Personality tests can be helpful tools to guide you in learning more about yourself, your personality and how that can help you find different career paths that align with your characteristics. A few examples of personality tests you can take are Meyers Briggs, CliftonStrengths and 16Personalities.

GCU offers an assessment tool for students, Career Compass, which is able to connect a student’s interests, abilities, values and more to present you with job classifications in the United States categorized by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

To kickstart your job search, begin by asking these questions:

  • What values are important to me?
  • What are my interests?
  • What are my strengths and weaknesses?
  • What do I enjoy doing? 
  • What skills do I possess? 
  • What experience do I have? 
  • What kind of work environment am I looking for? 
  • Where would my skills and experience be useful? 
  • Who is hiring and what are they looking for?

The answers to these questions can help you determine what positions you are well-suited for, the kinds of places you’d like to work and how you’ll present yourself to potential employers.

Begin your job search by first identifying the skills you have, your educational background and any prior work experience you might have. This could be a summer internship, a degree, an online certification, or experience using a tool or resource common in your field of interest. Positions that may be a good fit are those where you have most or all the required or relevant skills, education and work background.

Be sure to highlight the experience you have that could set you apart from others. What do you have that makes you unique or valuable? Do your research and learn about the different job requirements and work environments that might exist within your preferred industry. Read job descriptions to understand what employers are looking for and narrow down the jobs that would be best for you.

Getting Started on LinkedIn 

Before delving into using LinkedIn for job searching, it’s essential to first familiarize yourself with the LinkedIn platform. LinkedIn’s features can help you find answers to some of those job search questions. LinkedIn also gives you the opportunity to showcase yourself and what makes you the ideal candidate for hire. 

What Is LinkedIn?

LinkedIn is a professional networking site designed to help connect professionals and build relationships. The site offers several social networking features like profiles, messaging and content sharing for professionals to share their interests and get to know one another. 

Many businesses, recruiters and employers are on LinkedIn. With more than 500 million members in over 200 countries and territories around the world, it is a valuable site for employees and those looking for positions in a variety of industries.1

LinkedIn Profile Tips

One of the most important tasks to complete when getting started on LinkedIn is setting up your profile. This is how businesses, potential employers and other professionals get to know you. Although you can upload your resume to LinkedIn, think of your profile as a resume. Highlight your professional experience and skills and describe your interests and abilities. Give those visiting your profile a taste of your personality and what it might be like to work with you.

A strong resume can help as you are building your profile. Leave a strong and lasting impression on those who view your profile.

Top Four Tips for a LinkedIn Profile That Gets Noticed

A strong profile is key to using LinkedIn to find a job. Here are four actionable tips for you to consider as you set up your LinkedIn profile:

  1. Build a complete and up-to-date profile: Frequently update your profile. This will help you stay active on the site and ensure all your new skills and achievements are being shared. Make sure to update your location and education history as well after you graduate.
  2. Use company logos: Link to prior employers, colleges or universities so their main logo will appear on your LinkedIn profile. 
  3. Include a professional headshot: Having a professional headshot and a relevant cover image will help you communicate your personality and help you stand out.
  4. Write a clear and concise “About” section: Your profile summary might include explanations of relevant accomplishments and skills. Describe your work experience and career goals. Using keywords that target a specific job or industry can also make your profile more attractive to potential employers. 

Using LinkedIn as a Job Site

LinkedIn is more than just a networking site. Although connecting with other professionals and inquiring about open positions might help you land a job, LinkedIn also has built-in features designed to assist you in searching for available jobs and connecting with hiring managers. 

Employers, companies and recruiters on LinkedIn can list available positions within the “Jobs” tab on the homepage. You can also discover positions by browsing through company pages and utilizing the “People” tab on the homepage to explore your connections’ networks and their respective job listings.

Spend time expanding your professional network to help you learn about companies in your preferred industry, strengthen your relationships with others and make yourself stand out as the ideal candidate. 

How To Use Your LinkedIn Network To Find a Job

Here are some effective ways to expand your network on LinkedIn to potentially enhance your job search:

  • Connect with members with whom you already share a connection such as common college/university attendance, high school attendance, prior employment, etc.
  • Use LinkedIn Groups to explore conversations in your areas of interest.
  • Follow companies or executives you might want to work for to see updates and interact with their content.
  • Contact job posters to send an introduction and make connections with recruiters, but ensure that you use tools like Glassdoor to help you learn more about the relevancy of a company before you reach out. 

Steps for Finding a Job on LinkedIn

When trying to figure out how to find jobs on LinkedIn, there are several components to be mindful of. LinkedIn is a useful tool that people can utilize, and there are several approaches to using LinkedIn to find a job. Using LinkedIn’s networking and job search features can help you discover companies and positions in your desired industry, search for open jobs that match your interests, background and skills and to apply for available positions.

Using LinkedIn’s diverse features, here are some steps to help guide you through your job search on the platform:

  1. Create an optimized profile: Once you complete your profile make sure to include keywords targeted toward your preferred industry.
  2. Conduct research on your preferred industry: Follow news and discussions related to your field. 
  3. Expand your professional network: Follow companies and organizations in your field and engage with their content. 
  4. Join relevant groups: Engage in industry discussions with like-minded professionals.
  5. Search for suitable jobs: Use LinkedIn’s job search filters to narrow down job listings based on location, industry, experience level and more. 
  6. Apply for jobs: Complete applications and follow up when appropriate using LinkedIn’s messaging features.

LinkedIn’s “Easy Apply” feature is another option available to you that doesn’t require you to go to a company’s website to complete your application. This feature shares your resume and profile with the job poster in place of you filling out a long application for each job you apply for. It is important to ensure that your profile is high-quality and up to date when using this feature.

How To Filter Jobs on LinkedIn Job Search

When faced with a large selection of different job listings, some users may feel a little intimidated by all the options and possibilities. So, it is important to know how to find jobs on LinkedIn and to filter them out. There are several ways you can filter the jobs that show up on your LinkedIn “Jobs” page. After doing some exploring of the initial list, try doing a series of searches using different criteria each time.

Try filtering jobs by keyword. Use specific job titles as your keywords or use skills that appear on your profile. For example, if you are looking for a job in software engineering and you already have some experience with specific software, you can list the software as your search term and see jobs that include that skill in the listing. Create different searches using a variety of keywords relevant to you.

You can refine your job search by specifying your desired location. Try entering a ZIP code or city along with your job search criteria to explore opportunities in that area. Additionally, if you're interested in remote positions, you can use “remote” as a keyword without specifying a location to find relevant job listings.

Your connections on LinkedIn can be a valuable tool in helping you filter job listings. You can filter jobs that are in your network, meaning that you and the job share a LinkedIn connection. This can give you an opportunity to reach out and leverage your connections to gain insight, arrange an introduction, or even receive a recommendation or referral. Spending time connecting with others on LinkedIn and forming professional relationships is a great way to use LinkedIn’s networking platform during your job search.  

As a student at Grand Canyon University, you can use career resources along with LinkedIn to help you as you pursue employment. Fill out the form on this page and get connected with a university counselor today! 

1 Sardar, D. (2022, March 25). How to get a job through LinkedIn: The complete guide 2024. LinkedIn. Retrieved March 11, 2024.

Approved by the executive director of Career Services on April 29, 2024.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.