If you're reading this blog post, chances are high that you're a user of social media. According to the Pew Research Internet Project, 42% of online adults use multiple social networking sites, and many use them on a daily basis. LinkedIn is just one of these popular social sites, and is the world's largest professional network on the Internet with more than 330 million members in over 200 countries and territories.
Last week, LinkedIn released updates allowing you to showcase your certifications and other accomplishments, as well as (the update we're most excited about!), your volunteer work! Now you can update your profile to share the causes you care about, highlight your volunteer background, and feature your skills and interests that could help meet nonprofit needs.
Many nonprofits have jumped in and are posting volunteer job opportunities. To search for these positions, simply select "Jobs" from the LinkedIn Search Menu and type in "Volunteer _______" and the position you're looking for (example: "Volunteer Copywriter").
The updates come as a result of discussions with small and medium-size businesses, students and university advisers, and surveying current LinkedIn members. In the survey, LinkedIn found that:
Volunteering is valued
41% of LinkedIn hiring managers consider volunteer work equally as valuable as paid work experience when evaluating candidates.
Hiring managers take notice
20% of hiring managers in the U.S. agree they have hired a candidate because of their volunteer work experience.
Volunteering can lead to opportunities
Unemployed people who volunteer are 27% more likely to be hired than people who do not volunteer.*
Another update that may have gone unnoticed happened late this summer, with the addition of LinkedIn Customized Backgrounds. This feature allows users to add a background image to their personal LinkedIn profile.
We decided to make a few Habitat-related backgrounds for our staff, volunteers, donors and supporters to use. If you find an image you like, simply click on the link above the image (this will open the full size image), right click on the full size image and and select "Save Image As" to save the image to your computer. After you've logged into your LinkedIn account, simply navigate to your profile, click the edit button, and select "Edit Background" at the top of the page. Select the file from your computer and save your edits.
The recommended size/specifications for a Linkedin Background is1400 x 425 pixels, and must be in JPG, GIF or PNG file format, no larger than 4MB. More step-by-step instructions on updating your background can be found in this help article.
Find the Right Volunteer Opportunity
While you're making these updates to your LinkedIn profile, be sure to follow the Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity company page and let us know what you think of the new volunteer features! For those that may have already updated their profile - have you used the new volunteer search functionality on LinkedIn? If so, what did you find?
*Excerpt taken from https://volunteer.linkedin.com/.