Today, it is nearly impossible to meet a working professional or job seeker who doesn’t have a LinkedIn account. With approximately 450 million active members, LinkedIn is proving to be a dynamic resource for professionals across multiple industries, particularly within the healthcare sector.
However, there is an increasing number of health professionals who are still apprehensive to using LinkedIn, notes Michael Granger, a Senior Director within The Execu|Search Group’s Healthcare division. “Too many health professionals have the misconception that LinkedIn is only geared towards active job seekers,” says Michael. “In reality, LinkedIn can be used to establish and grow your network, build your online brand, and stay current on industry news and trends, making it a great addition for any professional’s career.”
If you haven’t been using LinkedIn to its full potential, here are 3 reasons why you should take the time now to create or update your account:
- It’s more than just an online resume
Having a LinkedIn account is more than just a simple platform to post your resume on. “The great thing about LinkedIn is that you have the freedom to elaborate on things that you may not have room for on your resume and highlight various aspects of your personality,” says Michael. In other words, LinkedIn is more than an online resume; it can serve as an outlet for connecting the health community through its publishing platform, job sections, professional groups, or discussion forums. “Rather than thinking of LinkedIn as an electronic version of your resume, think of it as a way to showcase your brand and who you are as both a professional and as a person,” advises Michael.
- Stay ahead of an ever-evolving industry
While LinkedIn can be a great site for someone to learn about your career history, professional accomplishments, and extracurricular activities, it can also be the first place an employer will look to verify your credibility. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, healthcare occupations are projected to grow much faster than the industry average over the next decade, which should be a good thing even if you don’t have a LinkedIn profile…right?
However, for health professionals who avoid keeping their profiles up to date, it can be misleading for a prospective employer, colleague, or even patient, who wants to know about your skillset. Therefore, it’s important to have a LinkedIn profile that speaks to your credibility in the field. The more you can utilize LinkedIn to stay relevant with the current healthcare landscape and learn about new areas of growth, the better positioned you’ll be to stay ahead of the curve. “As the healthcare climate is constantly evolving, health professionals who proactively keep their profile up to date with current skills, experience, and credentials will have an advantage over professionals not using this site when connecting with employers.”
- Share advice with the greater health community
Finally, hospitals and other healthcare providers are picking up on using LinkedIn as well. “Whether you’re looking for ways to increase your visibility within your specialty area or interested in pursuing consulting opportunities, LinkedIn is a great way to get yourself noticed,” says Michael. For example, there are a number of healthcare groups you can join in order to become an active member and share your knowledge. In addition, organizations share their research and thought leaders share timely health information publicly, so commenting on these updates regularly can also help to build your following. “LinkedIn provides many ways to interact, share experiences, and learn about what’s happening in the industry and health professionals should being taking advantage of this,” highlights Michael.