Use LinkedIn to Create Your Resume

Estimated reading time: 3 mins

I love LinkedIn. It’s the perfect networking tool for generating new business, job opportunities and keeping in touch with business contacts. The other reason I love it is because it’s my online resume, that anyone can find, read and gain confidence in my capabilities. So why not use LinkedIn to help create your offline resume?

If you have a profile on LinkedIn, take a look at it now. If you don’t, take a look at mine. You’ll notice that a LinkedIn profile is structured to show:

  1. Your title and current position
  2. A brief synopsis of you, including current and past positions, education and contact details
  3. Your summary, possibly including specialities
  4. Current and previous positions
  5. Publications
  6. Skills/expertise
  7. Languages
  8. Education
  9. Recommendations
  10. Interests
  11. Group memberships and industry affiliations
  12. Honors and awards
  13. Personal information

Isn’t most of this what we put on our resumes?

Why Alignment of a Resume and LinkedIn Profile is Important

I advocate having close alignment of my resume and my LinkedIn profile, because both become more credible. The fact is, most recruiters will sneak a look at your LinkedIn profile, if you have one, to check you out. And people are more truthful about what they write on LinkedIn about themselves. A study by researchers at Cornell University suggests LinkedIn members are less likely to lie about their skills, experience and education on the site than on their resumes. Because LinkedIn is in the public domain, ex-coworkers, managers, subordinates and customers can dispute false claims. Liars are more likely to be caught in the act!

So I recommend that the content of your LinkedIn profile should be used, as-is, as much as possible. A cut-and-paste will do, for most of it.

The structure of the LinkedIn profile is just right too – it’s ordered so that the most relevant and interesting sections are at the top, so when you use this structure on your resume, you’re putting the most important content first.

The ‘recommendations’ section, though, isn’t always the right thing to port over. Depending on your industry, you will probably need to leave that bit on the LinkedIn site. I didn’t use it.

How to Copy a LinkedIn Profile

It’s quite simple. What I did was this:

  1. I selected the text of my profile on the LinkedIn site by clicking my mouse at the top and dragging it down the bottom
  2. Then, I hit CTRL+C – or use whatever you prefer to copy to the clipboard
  3. Next, I opened up Notepad (on my PC, or use TextEdit on the Mac)
  4. Then I hit CTRL+V – or use your preferred ‘paste’ command
  5. Next I hit CTRL+A – or whatever you prefer for ‘select all’
  6. Then I hit CTRL+C – to copy everything into the clipboard again. The reason for using a text editor, for now, is because I want to remove all the formatting and images from the content of my clipboard. You might now of a smarter way of doing this, but it’s a matter of a few speedy clicks and it’s done this way!
  7. Then I opened up Word – use whichever word processor works for you
  8. Next I hit CTRL+V to copy the text-only, unformatted content from my clipboard.
Hey presto! The bare-bones of my resume! Then all I needed to do was to format the sections using Word’s styles, edit the bits I wanted and a few tweaks, and I’m done.

My LinkedIn profile, with choice editing, is usable and perfect for my resume.

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