Managing and synchronizing your LinkedIn, resume, and website
Relevant & context appropriate information.
I’m departing from my usual theme of programming/software-related posts to discuss the problem of managing the multiple channels through which you can sell yourself to recruiters and employers. You probably have a LinkedIn profile already, and almost definitely a resume. You might even have a personal website to showcase your portfolio and build an online presence.
One problem that could arise, however, is managing these channels, especially if you have a diverse range of work experiences, internships, achievements, extra-curricular activities, and personal projects.
Specifically, you want to ensure that the information on these channels are consistent, but also relevant and context-appropriate.
Consistency means that they are all synchronized and updated with the latest information.
Relevance means not including unnecessary information that adds no value to your application. This is especially important for your resume, which should be punchy and succinct (preferably within 2 pages/1 sheet).
Context-appropriate means tailoring the information to a specific application. For instance, you might want to highlight certain skills and qualities for a particular application in your resume — especially if they are listed as job requirements — and drop others.
I used to have trouble balancing these 3 aspects. I’d forget to update my LinkedIn, for instance, only focusing on my resume (which is saved locally on my computer). Over time, I developed a system that works for me.
My LinkedIn profile will serve as the single source of truth. It will be the first channel I update, and it will contain the most comprehensive information. This makes sense too, because your LinkedIn profile should be a general representation of your professional profile.
I maintain a general-purpose resume that serves as the starting point for any and all job/internship applications. In this document, I list only the most relevant work experiences, academic achievements, and extra-curricular activities, to keep it well within 2 pages. All the information in this document is adapted from my LinkedIn profile, therefore ensuring that it is always consistent.
I modify my general-purpose resume to create customized resumes for individual applications. When applying for a specific position, I research the company and read the job description and requirements to get a feel of what the company is looking for in a candidate. Then, I tailor my general-purpose resume for the application, by adding/removing relevant/irrelevant information. When I’m adding information, I get it from my LinkedIn profile — the designated source of truth, remember? This maintains consistency, and also enhances relevance and context-appropriateness.
Ultimately, I’m trying to create a seamless transition across these channels. I think it leaves a negative impression if, for instance, a prospective employer reads your resume, is impressed, looks you up on LinkedIn, and spots gaps and outdated information — or worse, contradictory information.
This article was published by Fabian Terh