Ask LH: Should I Embellish Skills In My LinkedIn Profile?

Dear Lifehacker, I've nearly finished my university degree in engineering, so keeping my LinkedIn up to date is of course crucial. But I wonder, how skilled should I be to list a skill on LinkedIn? For example, when it comes to renewable energy, I know more than the average person. But when compared to people working in the industry, I probably don't not that much! So what shouldn't I include on my profile? Regards, Profile Pedantic

Dear PP,

Fibbing on your online work profile is rarely a good idea. With that said, listing relevant skills — even peripheral ones — is essential if you want to attract interest from recruiters. According to LinkedIn's data, members who take the time to list skills receive an average of 13 times more profile views than those who leave the section blank.

As the company explains on its blog: "No matter your industry, your counterparts are upping the competitive ante by adding skills to their profiles to showcase their full expertise." The trick is promoting (genuine) skills that cast you in the best possible light and differentiate yourself from rival profiles.

The first step is to work out which tech skills are most sought after by employers in Australia. You can see what a handful of big industry players are looking for here.

Also be sure to check out this list, which breaks down the hottest 25 IT skills in Australia. These include data engineering and data warehousing, web architecture and development framework, Mac, Linux and Unix systems, database management and software, SAP ERP systems and C/C++.

Adding detail to the skills section may also encourage professional peers to recommend and/or endorse your profile: the more recommendations you have, the better you look to potential employers. You should also make it a habit of joining relevant skill-based LinkedIn Groups which are regularly monitored by recruiters.

There's nothing wrong with propping up your skills a bit; just make sure it actually matches the rest of your online resume. If there's no evidence that you've ever received a qualification for a skill or utilised it in the workplace, it should probably stay off your profile.

We've also included an infographic specifically relating to profile skills that LinkedIn published last year. Check it out below. Good luck!

Cheers Lifehacker

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    Where is the infographic? Have I missed something?

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