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4. Optimize LinkedIn Positions (Based on HPAA member discussions.)

Steps: 1. LinkedIn tips and traps  2. Check account settings  3. Optimize profile  4. Optimize positions  5. Use networking features  6. Get the emails you want

We have instructions on how to get LinkedIn to properly display positions at HP, HPE, Agilent, Compaq, DXC, EDS, Keysight, Micro Focus, and Tandem.

Strengthen your profile to be found by recruiting bots. (Check your LinkedIn profile. It may have been modified without your knowledge. You may not be found. Recruiters view illogical entries -- such as HPE positions before 2015 or an "EDS" headquartered in Egypt -- as fake.

- HPE changed many decades-old HP positions to HPE -- with the green logo. (The Hewlett-Packard company account on LinkedIn was apparently taken over by HPE.)

- LinkedIn has been standardizing company names, with odd results. Deleting inactive companies and eliminating organizational units from their company database. No information on an employer and no logo looks fake. (Instead, mention the old company, division, call center, subsidiary, or HP Labs in the Title or Description for a position.).

- It is easy to wind up with an unconvincing employer on a real position.

Trap: Before making changes, be sure to turn off the share with network feature -- unless you want your current managers and co-workers to find out that you are on the move.

Tricks and traps with positions:

- Rather than lump all of your roles and projects in a single position entry, break them up as separate positions under the same employer -- to emphasize growth and flexibility instead of the appearance of stagnation. Even if on the same team for years, your role and contributions changed over time. (Be sure to pick the right company for the time period from similarly-named companies.)

- Enter a new position if your employer was acquired or spun-off. A recruiter searching for someone with, say, a strong EDS background may not find you if your EDS training and experience are lost in an entry under Hewlett Packard Enterprise.

- Recruiters check for inconsistencies in profiles -- such as years that overlap between positions or companies that didn't exist in the years in question. (For example, one recruiter looking for exHP folks said that a claim to have worked at Hewlett Packard Enterprise before Nov 2015 was a sign of a fake profile.) This issue is especially complex for ex-EDS folks. Check dates on HPAA's EDS Page

- If the position was at a subsidiary or joint venture, you can select the parent company name -- and include the subsidiary or JV name in the Title and Description for the position. "Enrollment Coordinator (NHIC, subsidiary of EDS)" "Design Engineer (Yokogawa-Hewlett-Packard)" You want the prestige of the well-known parent company, but a recruiter may be trying to find someone with previous experience at that subsidiary or JV. When you arrange for employment verification, that position may be listed either way at the employment verification service.

Instead of filling a career gap with an unconvincing "Consultant" position, you may want add a Career Break position, with a calendar logo, for any current or past time period. LinkedIn suggests twelve types -- including "Caregiving" "Professional development" and "Retirement" -- and you can add specifics. LinkedIn - Career Break

Position descriptions:

- Keep in mind that most job openings are for someone to solve a specific problem -- usually on a project that is behind schedule. You want to be found when recruiters search for specific terms.

- You must assume that the recruiters, clerks, and "AI" bots searching for candidates know nothing about technology or the industry. They search for specific words or phrases, based on the job req they are trying to fill.

- Include alternative terms -- formal and informal; current and traditional terminology.

- Instead of a generic title, you can make the position stand out: "Senior Engineer - Operating System Kernel" "Program Manager - Automotive Manufacturing." Definitely include it in the Description section for the position.

- Go over your past positions. Change the wording to past tense. Summarize your results, accomplishments, and contributions in the position.

- Reduce the level of detail on very old positions. Or you can merge them. Or leave them out entirely: LinkedIn advice on ageism

- To avoid looking like a job-hopper after an apparent short time with an employer: "Continued in this position after EDS was purchased by HP."

- You may want to give a reason for leaving: "Unable to transfer out of state for family reasons."

- If you had an unusual title that is unique to that employer, also include an equivalent industry-standard title: HP's "Distinguished Technologist" may not get you found in a recruiter's search (and may sound like you made up the title.) Try something like this: "Senior Consulting Engineer -- HP title: Distinguished Technologist"

- Some titles may appear to outsiders to be exaggerated or pretentious. For example, HP's use of "global" in some titles where the worldwide scope of the job is obvious from the job description.

- If you worked primarily with one customer, account, supplier, or partner in a position, you may want to include that name in the Title and/or Description section of a position. "Account Manager. Client: Hogwarts School." A recruiter may be trying to find someone with related experience.

Notify your connections? If you want your connections -- including current managers and co-workers who are connections -- to be notified of after you've finished updating your LinkedIn profile and positions, turn on the share with network feature -- and then make a trivial change to your profile -- such as adding a space at the end of a line. "Congratulate Mary Smith on the new position" will go to your connections.

For each employer, click for HPAA's specific instructions -- which were developed through experiments with LinkedIn's system: 

HP - HPInc - HPE - DXC - MicroFocus




All HP-Related Companies -- HP, HPE, Agilent, Compaq, DXC, EDS, Keysight, Micro Focus, Tandem.

Question? Email: info@hpalumni.org (Oct 2, 2023)

Next step -- Networking:  Use LinkedIn's networking features to find former co-workers who know your work.

Return to first article in this series: "LinkedIn Tips and Traps - How LinkedIn Really Works."

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