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Tips for finding top IT talent on LinkedIn

Rich Hein | Feb. 27, 2013
LinkedIn, the popular social network, recently announced that it had more than 200 million members. As the professional network continues to grow, more recruiters and employers are using the social network to tap IT talent--both those actively looking as well as those who aren't.

Here are some of the common Boolean terms to aid your search:

AND - Recruiters can search for profiles that include two terms by separating those terms with the uppercase word AND. However, you don't have to use AND. If you enter two terms, the search engine will assume there is an AND between them. For example:

Software AND engineer "Software engineer" "Customer service" AND hospitality "Instructional design" Human resources

OR - Recruiters and hiring managers can broaden their search to find member profiles that include one or more terms by separating those terms with the upper-case word OR. OR is most often used to search for alternate spellings or for terms that mean the same thing. For example:

Helpdesk OR "Help Desk" OR "Technical Support" "Vice President" OR VP OR "V.P." OR SVP OR EVP J2EE OR "Java Enterprise Edition" OR JEE OR JEE5 "Account executive" OR "account exec" OR "account manager" OR "sales executive" OR "sales manager" OR "sales representative"

NOT - Recruiters can conduct searches that exclude a particular term by typing that term with an uppercase NOT immediately before it. Their search results will exclude any profile containing that term. For example:

NOT director (Google OR Salesforce) NOT LinkedIn Director NOT executive NOT vp NOT Recruiter NOT Talent

Please note that NOT is the least used and least understood modifier, but it shouldn't be underestimated. A huge part of what recruiters ARE looking for is what they're NOT looking for. NOT helps recruiters pare down their search results by excluding LinkedIn members they know aren't eligible or wouldn't necessarily be interested in the role.

Quotes - Recruiters searching for an exact phrase or terms that include punctuation, enclose the phrase in quotation marks. They can use these in addition to other modifiers. For example:

"Product manager" "Account representative" "Executive assistant" ".net" AND "C++"

Parenthesis - Recruiters can conduct complex searches by combining terms and modifiers. The following example will find both software engineers and software architects:

Software AND (engineer OR architect) Trainer NOT (fitness OR physical) (HR OR "human resources") AND "customer service

LinkedIn Talent Solutions Options

LinkedIn also offers services to hiring managers and recruiters over and above LinkedIn Premium.

Job Slots - Nathanson likens this option to a parking spot for your job postings. As opposed to job boards where you post a job and after time it expires. "It's essentially your real estate for your jobs for the year," says Nathanson. You can post a new job each day or just keep refreshing the same one.

Recruiter Seat - Using this service, Nathanson says, you can contact any person in LinkedIn's network of 200 million professionals without that person being a part of your network.


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