The answer to this question isn't simply “yes” or “no”, but rather “it depends”.
If your job search strategy includes searching for opportunities on LinkedIn, then chances are that you have encountered the “Easy Apply” or “Apply Now” button on some of those job postings. That easy apply feature enables you to send an application directly from LinkedIn, without going through the hiring company's website. For many job seekers, this option can streamline the application process and enable them to quickly pursue many different job opportunities in a short period of time.
While that would seem to be an ideal way to get your name in front of as many hiring managers as possible, it is important to consider whether the LinkedIn Easy Apply option is the best strategy for you. In this post, we will explore the best strategies for using this application submission method and try to offer you some insight into whether it can benefit your job search efforts.
What is LinkedIn Easy Apply?
Easy Apply is a LinkedIn application option that enables job seekers to quickly submit their profile information to hiring managers at companies with listed open positions. When you search for job postings on LinkedIn, the listings for available positions will include a button that can be used to complete your application. Some companies choose to use the “Apply on company website” button, which sends you to the job application on their site. Others opt for the “Easy Apply/Apply Now” button, which bypasses the company site.
What do employers see when you utilize Easy Apply?
When you click on Easy Apply, you will have an opportunity to upload your resume, which will be sent as an attachment to the hiring employer. You will also have an opportunity to ask any basic questions that the employer may have. So far, so good, right? Obviously, those are all details that you want any prospective employer to see. The question is, though, will that hiring manager see enough to want to see more?
That's not always an easy question to answer, since the first thing that they will see is your name on a list of other candidates, along with your photo, location, and LinkedIn profile headline. Those are the only details that the hiring manager will have at hand when trying to decide whether to delve deeper into your profile, application, and resume information.
You should also know that hiring managers will see your profile before they get to your linked resume. As you might guess, they may not even bother to open your resume if your profile fails to capture their attention. And they won't even bother looking through your profile if that initial headline misses the mark.
In short, you need to be aware of the fact that employers who receive Easy Apply applications will only see a limited amount of information. Moreover, your application is likely to be received along with dozens or even hundreds of other submissions. That means that you will have to go the extra mile if you want your application to receive more than a brief glance.
When should you use Easy Apply?
Since hiring managers see only a tiny bit of information in their initial contact with your Easy Apply application, it is wise to only use this option if you are committed to uploading your resume with your submission. In addition, you should only bother with this type of submission if you have already optimized your LinkedIn profile in a way that can capture that hiring manager's interest. Remember, the hiring company will see your profile first, and many will base their initial decisions on the information your profile provides.
So, if you see a job posting that interests you and it requires you to submit your application using the easy apply option, then do so. But if you want to maximize your chances of getting noticed and considered, then make sure that you properly prepare your profile to make the best possible first impression.
How to get the most out of your LinkedIn application
That brings us to perhaps the most important consideration of all: making sure that your profile is ready to make that impression. The following tips can help you optimize your profile to fully benefit from the Easy Apply option.
Begin with your profile headline
If you intend to use the easy apply option, make sure that your headline begins with the job title you are seeking within the first 30 characters. Why? Well, the hiring manager is only going to see those first 30 characters and if that desired job title is not immediately clear, your submission may just get ignored.
Optimize your profile
Focus on optimizing your profile so that it includes all the information the hiring manager will find in your resume. Yes, this might seem counterintuitive, but you need to remember that there is no guarantee that the person who sees your profile will even bother to open your resume.
Use the main keywords you see in the job description throughout your profile, as well as any variations of those keywords. Also, include important filter keywords related to job title and your location.
Make sure that your profile includes recommendations. The best way to get those recommendations is to write recommendations for others in your network. That will give you the foot in the door you need to ask them to respond in kind.
Use your summary to speak to employers
Turn your summary into a de facto cover letter by directing it toward potential employers. Focus on your strengths, experience, and the value you can provide if you are hired.
Always include your resume
Never forget to attach your resume, even if your profile contains most of that information. If an employer considers you for the position, they will want to see your resume to ensure that they have a complete picture of who you are as an employee.
Don't forget to reply
Always reply to any employer who contacts you about your application, even if you later decide that you do not want that position. Remember, you should never consciously burn bridges that you may need to cross later on in life.
LinkedIn's Easy Apply option may seem like a simple and efficient way to get your application in front of a hiring manager's eyes, but it can also present some unique challenges. If you intend to use that option, make sure that you follow these tips to give yourself the best chance of getting noticed and landing that all-important interview.
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