Seen above is a LinkedIn member's "Your Dashboard." Click on "Me" and "View Profile" to see your Dashboard near the top of your Profile. Each Profile has a dashboard, visible only to that member. This is one of the ways to see how visible you are in LinkedIn and also, circled above, to access "Shared Career Interests." (More details about that process below.)
In October, 2016, LinkedIn announced "Open Candidate," a new tool for job seekers and recruiters. Within a few months of the launch, it was renamed "Shared Career Interests."
If you decide to using this tool, LinkedIn will share the following information with recruiters who use their LinkedIn Recruiter service:
Since not every recruiter or employer can afford to use LinkedIn Recruiter, your interest in new opportunities may not be visible to your target employers.
Details on how to join most effectively are below. But you might want to consider these cautions, next, before you sign up.
Apparently, 90 percent of eligible memberes opted to join this program. But, I encourage caution, particularly if you are employed, be very careful about signing up for this visibility.
On the sign-up page, below, where you can select "On" to choose to participate in this program, they make the following statement:
"We take steps to not show your current company that you’re open, but can’t guarantee complete privacy."
They cannot make this guarantee because many recruiters are not employees of the company they are recruiting for. They are independent recruiters who may be working on contract with several employers. LinkedIn will probably not be able to protect you from these recruiters because their connection to your employer will likely be invisible to LinkedIn.
If you are employed now, consider these two issues before you click the "On" button to activate Shared Career Interests:
So, consider your other options before joining a LinkedIn Shared Career Interests. LinkedIn provides more information on this page: Learn more.
By joining this program, you may be viewed by recruiters or employers as an "active candidate." In the recent past, being an active candidate is not usually good.
For the last few decades, employers have been less interested in hiring an "active candidate" (someone actually looking for a new job) than in hiring a "passive candidate" (someone who is, presumably, happily employed and not looking for a new job). Crazy, but real nonetheless.
Notice also that one of the bits of information which is made available to recruiters (above) is the date you "flagged" yourself as open to new opportunities. So, LinkedIn is telling them how long you have been an "active candidate." Not clear that they will record when you joined and how long you participated if you subsequently drop out with or without a change in job or employer.
Time may change this negative view, or LinkedIn's credibility and business acumen may overcome it for LinkedIn Active Candidates.
The sign-up process is pretty clear. Start by clicking on "Career interests" in your Profile's "Dashboard" at the top of this page and near the top of your Profile (when you are in Me >> View Profile mode).
Then, follow these2 steps to effectively activate Shared Career Interests:
1. Join by clicking the button beside the word "Off" (in the image below). It will change to "On" and you will be added to the program.
Note the privacy warning visible below the text in the red square above.
2. Scroll down this page, and you will see that additonal information is collected to help recruiters know what you want next. Be sure to complete all of these fields.
LinkedIn has specific options for you to select when you are adding job titles, locations, and industries. Typing in another term is labeled "Invalid input" apparently not accepted or shared with employers.
To learn how LinkedIn describes the Shared Career Interests process to employers, read this page -- 2 New Ways to Discover Candidates Who Are Open to Hearing From You on LinkedIn. It is very interesting!
This is the opportunity for more visibility with employers. It does offer some risks, but the risk may be offset by the added visibility.
Online job search expert Susan P. Joyce has been observing the online job search world and teaching online job search skills since 1995. A veteran of the United States Marine Corps and a recent Visiting Scholar at the MIT Sloan School of Management, Susan is a two-time layoff “graduate” who has worked in human resources at Harvard University and in a compensation consulting firm. Since 1998, Susan has been editor and publisher of Job-Hunt.org. Follow Susan on Twitter at @jobhuntorg and on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+.