Yep: Because of Linkedin, an online news editor was able to contact a journalist friend of mine (whose name is common enough to frustrate easy googling) and offer him what he now calls the best job he's ever had.A friend of mine who has his own law firm finds the forums broken down by industry and subject to be extremely useful, if you're willing to invest serious time in them. (I'm not.)
Know at least three people who have gotten jobs because of LinkedIn.
So did the employers just browse the site and decide your friends were the ones, like a "Pikachu, I pick you!" moment?
No, not at all. In the cases I'm aware of, Linkedin offered a fast way for former colleagues to reconnect with people they knew would be perfect for very specific jobs.
In my field, clinical research, you're often looking for purple cows and LinkedIn helps headhunters land mauve ones at least. And it also works in the way Jeff mentioned. Also, it works a little bit as a quick and dirty background check for a small company that can't pay for the real thing- the theory is that people are less likely to lie on a public LinkedIn profile than on a CV.
Jeff: So all that's really necessary is contact info, not the whole CV + "Joe Schmoe is the best little worker! All his widgets get done on time!" testimonials? Loafingcactus: What is a "purple cow"? *Clueless, not employed in real world.* Interesting about catching liars though. But don't you think people would be more likely to simply omit all the negative things about themselves that would show up in background checks, like, you know, convictions, prison time, previous firings?
MSI: I can't say for sure. I've not heard consistent opinions about either the usefulness of Linkedin or the best way(s) to use it.What I do hear from some of my more Linkedin-savvy friends is that you don't use it like Facebook--that is, you don't link up with your cousin or that kid you ate lunch with in third grade, unless perhaps they're in your line of work.
When I interview job candidates, I look on LinkedIn to see if we have any shared contacts. Not because people you chose to LinkIn-to are going to share some deep dark secrets, but because they are likely to have a different perspective from your hand-picked list of three references.
Jeff and Pudge: But I have no professional connections; all the people who "link" to me are friend and cousin types. I can neither prune them (family insult!), nor would I like them to serve as my references. I think I oppose this entire idea.
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