One of the greatest and most underutilized tools for transitioning to the job of your dreams is LinkedIn. If you’re not on there, you are losing. Don’t let thoughts like “Just another social network that I won’t use,” or “I don’t want those emails” stop you from using a system that could change your life. LinkedIn is a social network for professionals and has settings just like every other site to reduce or stop unwanted communications. If that’s not enough incentive, let me tell you three reasons it’s worth the time to sign up and get to work!

You Can See What You Need to Get What You Want

When researching a company, one of the greatest tools you can use is LinkedIn. If you’ve already gotten an interview and know who you’ll be speaking with, you can take a look at their career progression and find some common points for discussion. If you know the next step in your career, but need some guidance on what it takes to get there, use LinkedIn to help you build a road map.

You can search for companies you want to work for, and find people in the department or type of role you’d like to be in. More than likely, they have a pretty thorough profile and you’ll be able to see their previous job titles as well as some of the skills and responsibilities they picked up along the way. This will help you plot your career plan or, at the very least, reformat your resume to be more in line with what that type of company is looking for. In researching current employees, you may even find some companies in their past that you hadn’t considered before. The more places you can find to apply, the better the chance you have of making the transition.

Recruiters Are Looking for You

A lot of people underestimate the value of working with staffing firm representatives and proactively with company recruiters. As a former recruiter, I can tell you that one of the most common tools I used was LinkedIn. Show me a good recruiter not on the platform and I’ll show you a unicorn.

Monster or Career Builder is cool, but LinkedIn eliminated a lot of the noise that I found on traditional job boards. Everybody is on Monster with a basic profile. Many of which just aren’t that great. Surround yourself with quality. You’ll find more of it on LinkedIn.

Search Engine Rankings for Your Name

If you don’t have a website with your name in the URL, LinkedIn is a great way to create a search engine presence that can quickly inspire recruiters to give you a call. If you already secured an interview, interviewers may run a search on your name to learn more about you. Help reassure them why you’re a great fit before you even walk in the door. If you want to be found, you need to make yourself visible.

These are just three reasons to be on LinkedIn. If you’re not on there, sacrifice your Facebook or Twitter time to build a profile that matters. With each day that passes, so does opportunity. Don’t be missed!

What social media networks do you belong to? Which are your favorites? 

Rich Jones is a Pathfinder for Professionals with a knack for helping the wayward determine the next steps of their careers. He’s also a certified professional in Human Resources with for-profit and non-profit recruiting experience. Check Rich out on his career blog. I Am Rich Jones.