Careers Service



How to use LinkedIn for your Career

There are many benefits to using LinkedIn for your career, but you need to keep your profile up to date and be proactive if you want it to work for you.

Being active on LinkedIn also increases your Google rankings, making you more likely to be found by potential employers.

Here are some of our suggestions for using LinkedIn proactively. 

Find jobs

Use LinkedIn to find advertised jobs - some employers, for example L’Oreal, now use LinkedIn for direct recruitment, where you submit your LinkedIn profile instead of a CV.

Make connections

  • begin by connecting to existing contacts such as friends, family, classmates, academics, colleagues and employers from part-time jobs and internships, volunteering and extra-curricular activities
  • read our step-by-step guide, with example questions to get you started and connect with Newcastle alumni on LinkedIn
  • try not to be intimidated by people in senior roles. Connect with people whose careers you admire, by using the advanced people search. Try to personalise requests to connect (see below)
  • request introductions - to expand your network. Ask an existing connection to introduce you to someone who is a second or third level connection, but not yet known to you.
  • use a keyword search relevant to your career interests, eg ‘digital marketing’, to show related profiles
  • send messages - if you’re a member of the same group as someone, you can send them a direct message

Add a personal note

Generic invitations can be ignored. To make it more personal you can:

  • tailor your message in the ‘personal note’ box when you click to connect with someone
  • look at their LinkedIn profile – do you have any similar interests, anyone in common?
  • be clear why you want to connect. Your reason should not be to request a job or work experience

Show your interests

  • comment on industry-specific articles and ask questions in LinkedIn groups. Show you're engaged and proactive. Avoid controversy unless you want to create a particular professional persona. Asking a well-considered question demonstrates you are business and industry aware
  • be conscious of what you ask in groups. Do your research (at the least a Google search) before you ask a question and don’t ask anything that has an obvious answer.

Research organisations, roles, staff and jobs

  • follow company’s pages - they often have details of the organisation's products and services. They also often include where people have worked before. Use company search to find these.

  • find staff who work for orhanisations you you are interested in. Search by ‘relationship’ to see your first, second and third degree contacts. You could ask any contacts for information that could help you in the application process
  • investigate and get inspiration for career paths - look at individual profiles to identify the key skills, knowledge and experience current employees at a particular company have. You can also search by degree subject, particular skills you want to use in a job and get inspiration from what alumni are doing by using the LinkedIn Find Alumni tool
  • Before an interview it's a good idea to check your interviewer’s LinkedIn profile. Find out more about them and see if there is anything you have in common

More information 

Newcastle University Careers Service LinkedIn YouTube Tutorials

Advice from LinkedIn

Further advice on using LinkedIn

More help 

  • attend our careers workshops on using social media. For dates and times, see Events
  • you can also get feedback on your LinkedIn profile from the Careers Service. For advice on how to create a profile, see LinkedIn profiles

If you need more help using LinkedIn for your career, the Careers Service can provide tailored advice and support

We can provide feedback on your LinkedIn profile through online and in-person CV appointments. Log into MyCareer and click on 'Book', then 'Appointments' to choose a time to suit you. Alternatively, you can request written feedback on your LinkedIn profile - this can take up to 5 working days. Click on 'Resources' in MyCareer (top right hand corner) to submit your query.