We’ve now come to part three of the five part series on LinkedIn’s “YOUniversity” Dashboard. In part one and part two I covered how the dashboard works with prospective and current students; helping them to do things such as rank universities and find their first job. In part three I’m going to explore the question: What’s in it for alumni?
The LinkedIn “YOUniversity” dashboard is great for not just students, but alumni as well. I know that it’s easy to forget about your college or university once you set foot out into the “real world”. For many, the only time we interact with our alma mater is during homecoming or a similar special event. I urge you all to not leave your school ties in a cobwebbed corner (with your spark notes and APA style guide), when you graduate from the institution. Instead, follow what LinkedIn has mapped out for Alumni, which is designed to help you find your next great opportunity.
LinkedIn’s Alumni “YOUniversity” section breaks out an alumni’s journey into the following three parts:
Begin by following your school’s University page. This is the best way to keep an eye on campus and alumni news and possible new opportunities to join a board, volunteer, or even get a job.
I’ve highlighted the different sections that make up University pages in part two of this series.
The Alumni Tool
The Alumni tool is most easily accessed by hovering over the “Connections” tab and clicking on “Find Alumni”.
Once you are taken to the alumni tool, you can then use the dashboard to find useful information on Alumni such as:
• Where they live
• Where they work
• What they do
• What they studied
• What they’re skilled at
• How you’re connected
Looking to relocate? Consider tapping into your Alumni network in that area. Thinking about taking a job with a certain large corporation? Check to see what alumni already work there and reach out to get an insider opinion.
Looking to use this tool even more strategically? Click here for Whitney Harmel’s post on how to find others through the LinkedIn Alumni Tool.
Last but not least, LinkedIn reminds us all to take a look at our alumni network when actively applying for a new job. “It’s not what you know, but who you know.” We’ve all heard this saying and LinkedIn reminds us how true it is with this stat – “Over 80% of jobs are landed through networking”. Why not tap into your alumni network when prospecting for a new job? When applying through LinkedIn, look to see who has posted the job and then look to see how you are connected to that person. As you connect with more alumni, you’ll commonly see them as the link between you and the hiring manager.
In addition to using these three sections on LinkedIn to help give you leverage when looking to land new business, make new connections, or get a new job, LinkedIn reminds alumni that they still have access to the tools designed for prospective and current students. So lets say you are thinking about online classes or maybe going back to school to get a graduate degree. You can definitely use the “YOUniversity” dashboard to find different universities, see how they rank, examine different fields of study, and even create a decision board to get other people’s opinion before deciding upon which degree and institution is right for you.
I hope that this post helps you to see the value of your alumni status and alumni connections on LinkedIn. Take a look at the areas I mention in this post and begin by just exploring one area. After a week or two, evaluate your efforts. Have they made a difference in how LinkedIn worked for you?
If you are enjoying this series, stay tuned as next week I’ll discuss how LinkedIn is making a difference for schools.