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Young professionals seeking to distinguish themselves in a sea of peers boasting similar assets might do well to consider boosting their visibility online-specifically via the massive business and employment-oriented service, known as Linkedin.
A new resume study conducted by ResumeGo posits that job applicants with comprehensive Linkedin profiles can increase their chances of scoring an interview by a shocking 71%.
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What does a comprehensive profile look like?
ResumeGo began with a field experiment that compiled 24,570 fictitious resumes between October 9, 2018, and March 8, 2019. These resumes were sent to job openings found on various recruiter sites, namely ZipRecruiter, Indeed, and Glassdoor.
One-third of these fake resumes contained no Linkedin profile what’s so ever, another third featured bare-bones Linkedin profiles and the final third contained a link to a detailed Linkedin profile. Callback rates were then recorded based on these precursors.
The authors defined a bare-bone Linkedin profile as one that featured a bio under 500 characters, five connections or less, no descriptions filled out for any of the work experiences listed, and no profile picture.
Conversely, a comprehensive Linkedin profile was defined as one that contained summaries over 1,000 characters, 300 connections or more, dense bullet-point or paragraph based descriptions for every work experience section list and a professional headshot.
These applicants sent their resumes off to 8,190 jobs in a wide range of industries, including finance, marketing, accounting, human resources, technology, science, engineering, education, retail, and healthcare.
“Based on the results of the field experiment, job applicants who included a link to a comprehensive LinkedIn profile on their resumes received a callback rate of 13.5%, which is 71% higher than the 7.9% callback rate of job applicants who didn’t have a LinkedIn profile at all,” the authors of the study report.
Interestingly enough, not only did having a bare-bones Linkedin profile offer no discernible boosts to callback rates, these resumes actually were slightly less likely to receive a callback than resumes that didn’t have a Linkedin profile at all.
The researchers noted how their data affected different job levels. Employers seeking employees for higher level positions were not as affected by comprehensive LinkedIn profiles as employers seeking workers for low-level positions. The authors explain, “The findings showed that as job level increased, the gap in callback rates decreased between job applicants with a comprehensive LinkedIn profile and job applicants with no LinkedIn profile at all.”
All in all, if you’re going to have a Linkedin profile at all, be sure to put time and effort into it; otherwise, it can only hurt you.
The study believes this is the case because employers, on some level, associate bare-bones Linkedin profiles with low-quality work. The authors continue, “They’d rather see no LinkedIn profile at all than see one that lacks any effort put into it. This is, of course, just conjecture, and more research and professional input would be required before drawing any strong conclusions.”
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