Have you ever compared your resume and LinkedIn profile side-by-side? If you haven’t, as an executive recruiter, I highly suggest doing it. It is important to make sure that graduation dates, titles, company names and work tenure for each position match. Too many people ignore this step and that can lead to questions from an interviewer or recruiter. Yes, I have asked a potential candidate why his LinkedIn profile said he worked at a company for five years, while his resume listed four? Many times, there is no intent to deceive; it is a simple typo. Regardless, it is still awkward.
The easiest way to review is to print out your LinkedIn profile in a PDF format. Proofreading is best done, in my opinion, off of a hard copy. This can be accomplished by going to your profile, clicking More, clicking Save to PDF and then printing. Print your resume and then carefully walk through each position, the education section, and the organizations section in order to make sure that the content is accurate and the same on each document. I prefer to make corrections, reprint each document, put the two documents away for a hour or two, and review both again with fresh eyes. If someone I trust is also willing to review, that is even better.
It is fine for your LinkedIn profile to reflect earlier positions that your resume may not. A resume is often tailored to show the last 10 to 15 years of work experience in order to keep it concise, while a LinkedIn profile may reach back further than that. As an example, my profile reflects my first position out of college, which I normally leave off of my resume.
The point is, before applying for a position, make sure that both your resume and LinkedIn profile paint a consistent, accurate picture of your professional experience and accomplishments. This will help you avoid an embarrassing conversation during the interview process.
Amy Bauer Managing Principal
CA Search Advisors, LLC