LinkedIn has added a new set of features to give you an edge in landing your next job … assuming you apply through the professional social network, of course. When you choose a company, LinkedIn will give you insights, like whether you know someone employed there, whether the company has a track record of hiring of people with qualifications similar to your own, and who your potential boss and coworkers might be.
To take advantage of this new feature, just view any job posting on LinkedIn. In addition to the role requirements and qualifications, you’ll find the new Insights feature, which will vary depending on whether you’re a Premium member. If you’re using the site for free, you’ll see a feature called Meet the Team, which will display all the people at the company with titles similar to yours. LinkedIn says this will give you a better understanding of the background and skills of your prospective team. In addition, you’ll be shown any connections you may have who currently work there, complete with a “one-click ability” to message them directly.
If you’re a Premium member, you’ll get the above-mentioned insights, but also Company Insights, which gives you a glimpse into the company’s hiring trends, as well as the average tenure and number of employees.
Networking is a tried-and-true method — “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” goes the adage — and while there’s nothing immediate that LinkedIn can do about your qualifications, it can certainly help maximize your contacts. And let’s be honest, knowing a bit more about the company you’re applying for can be powerful, and will, if nothing else, prepare you to ask better questions in the interview.
What LinkedIn has done is cut down on the amount of research you need to do when searching for a new career opportunity. While you might be curious about the latest job from XYZ company, it’s useful to consider your expectations — are you interested because it might pay well, because it’s going to look good on your resume, or because you think you’ll really be happy there? And sometimes more information is what’s needed to one-up your closest competitor. Whatever the case, the professional social network wants to give you the insights that will enable you to fight your way to the job you want.
The new feature is available to about 10 percent of LinkedIn’s English-speaking audience, including those in the U.S., Canada, India, the U.K, and Australia. There are plans to bring the feature to more regions internationally, starting in early 2016. It’s also only available on the desktop, so there’s still going to be a discrepancy between the user experience on Web and on LinkedIn’s “Project Voyager” mobile app. However, the company says that it plans to extend these features across its Job Search app and its flagship app sometime in the first quarter of next year.