For years, LinkedIn has rightfully prided itself on being the world’s largest professional network and continues to increase its appeal to the college student demographic every day.
With new professionals joining at the accelerating rate of more than two new members per second according to LinkedIn’s website, it’s no surprise that students and recent college graduates are flocking to LinkedIn. LinkedIn provides a superior professional outlet for young people to communicate compared to other social networking sites.
In fact, in an “About Us” press release, LinkedIn says this group of students and grads is its fastest-growing demographic and makes up 40 million of its users.
While that may seem like a lot, it only makes up a small portion of the ever-increasing 465 million users that make up the member population.
For those who aren’t familiar with the website, LinkedIn is a professional network that works somewhat similarly to Facebook.
The creators of this brilliant tool definitely seemed to have college students in mind when they decided to make it free to register.
That means at no cost to them, any student has the ability to easily connect with other students, business professionals and companies.
These connections, similar to Facebook friends, can easily navigate to a user’s profile and view his or her skills, work history, education, volunteer work, publications and more.
Not only does LinkedIn match users with these possible connections based on profile, but the website can also match you with jobs based on your qualifications and job search history.
Once matched with a job, some businesses even let you apply directly from a LinkedIn account. This option makes it easy and fast to apply for a position in a matter of seconds.
If you aren’t quite ready to apply or your résumé still needs some fine-tuning, LinkedIn has cleverly added in a “save” feature so you can save the job to your account and go back later to find it.
Arguably one of the best features of the job tool is customizing your job search. If you go to “job preferences” on the jobs page, you can customize the locations you are looking for, what experience you have, certain job levels, what size you want the company to be and you can even opt to turn on the recruiter option and according to LinkedIn “let your next job find you.”
Also similarly to Facebook, you can update your status, post photos or upload articles to your news feed for your connections to see, comment on, like or share.
Unlike the memes, family photos, or updates in relationship status that you might see on a Facebook newsfeed, LinkedIn users generally tend to use this feature to post important breaking news, updates on job openings, relevant articles, tips on interviewing and résumé-building or professional accomplishments.
LinkedIn has all the bases covered and has catered to virtually any need that a college student, graduate or professional might have.
With its increasing technology and updates as a networking tool to students and recent graduates, LinkedIn is sure to become an even more valuable asset to young professionals in the future.