Back in September 2012, LinkedIn launched a new feature: endorsements. Unlike recommendations, where you’d ask former co-workers or managers to compose and post a short note of praise on your profile, endorsements are incredibly easy—maybe too easy—to give. Your connections’ names start popping up at the top of your page when you sign in, and you’re asked to endorse them for particular skills.
A lot of people are mystified, and some are annoyed, by this feature. What value does it have when someone you haven’t seen or worked with in 15 years endorses one of your skills? Are you expected to reciprocate? Most importantly, does it really matter? Do recruiters looking at your profile, for example, care how many endorsements you have and give them weight?
In answer to the last question first: So far, not really. First of all, the number of endorsements you have will not affect LinkedIn search results. Second, professional recruiters have been quoted as saying that endorsements are “nice to see” on a profile, but currently recommendations are much more important.
However, LinkedIn is the leader in professional social networking. If the initial numbers are any indication, the endorsement feature will become more popular. Recruiters and hiring managers may not care much about endorsements right now, but they very well could in the future. So working on gaining them now will put you ahead of the curve, instead of realizing a year from now that you’ve been left behind.
How Do You Get Endorsements?
1) Start by listing your skills. If you haven’t gotten around to filling out the “skills and experience” area on your profile, do it as soon as possible. You want people endorsing you for the skills you feel are most important. Pick at least ten.
2) Connect with your inner circle. Only your first-degree connections can endorse you, so send a quick email out to 10 of your connections who know you best. Ask them to endorse you for skills that they know from experience that you have. Do NOT spam your entire network for endorsements.
3) Endorse others. Whether you start the ball rolling by endorsing a former colleague, or you are returning the favor for someone who endorsed you, participate in the process. Especially if you have experience with their specialties, be sure to get in the game.
Another great way to get endorsements? Through work experience. And Synerfac can help you find great jobs where you’ll enhance your skills and show your stuff to some terrific clients! Contact us any time you’d like to expand your professional horizons.