How you portray yourself online can mean the difference between getting a job or not. If you are making these mistakes in your profile, you may not be getting in front of the right people – employers.

The purpose of having an online career profile is to network. The benefit of networking on the Cleared Network is that you’re making connections with vetted employers in a secure space – and they’re looking for people like you (clearance holders). Your online profile is your personal branding page.

But to make the most of your profile, you have to:

  • have a well-written headline
  • optimize your profile
  • build connections
  • keep it up-to-date

Have a Well-Written Headline   

The importance of having a well-written relevant headline can’t be stressed enough. When a search is performed, the results returned are based in large part on words in the headlines. Look to see what other people are using for their headline. Don’t copy, but construct one similar that is targeted specifically to you.

Optimize Your Profile

For your online profile to work effectively, you have to make it as complete as possible. As you fill in the various sections of your profile, weave in keywords that are specific to your industry.  Instead of re-inventing the wheel, see what keywords are used in job descriptions for the positions you’re interested in. Don’t just fill in what’s required – work to make your profile complete.

Build Connections 

Your online profile is meant to be a career network. You can’t have a network without connections. Type in keywords or job titles to search for relevant positions. Then, see which recruiter has posted those positions, and request to add them to your network. That will help you keep track of not just the jobs you’re interested in, but the individuals hiring for them.

Keep It Up-to-Date

As with most things, you get out of something just what you put into it – your online profile is no different. Your profile should be constantly in flux as your life changes. Be sure to update changes in work, education and anything that can affect your profile.

An online career network’s purpose, like other social media platforms, is to build relationships. You do that through active participation, such as making posts in groups, asking and answering questions, and checking to see what upcoming job search events will be happening in your area, just to name a few.

Your online career profile is a powerful job search tool that should be part of your job search marketing plan. Take the approach you are selling something, because you are – you. So like a salesman, expound on the benefits you can offer a company if they hired you.

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Kness retired in November 2007 as a Senior Noncommissioned Officer after serving 36 years of service with the Minnesota Army National Guard of which 32 of those years were in a full-time status along with being a traditional guardsman. Kness takes pride in being able to still help veterans, military members, and families as they struggle through veteran and dependent education issues.