LinkedIn: Why Keeping Your Profile Up-to-Date Is Important
World Small Animal Veterinary Association Congress Proceedings, 2019
H. Perras
Marketing consultant and Speaker, Marketing, Montreal, QC, Canada

LinkedIn is sure to leave an impression. It is far from being an entertainment social network like Facebook, and it does not push the same holiday fantasies as Instagram. Many find it too boring or stressful! However, LinkedIn is a great tool that has improved since it was purchased by Microsoft in 2016 for the modest sum of 26 billion US dollars. A statistic that dates from 2017 mentions that 93% of recruiters are inspecting the profile of candidates on social media before an interview.

Why Being on LinkedIn Is Important

For veterinarian owners: what good is it to be there if we don’t need to look for employment? When the market is almost at full employment, we are literally snatching away the right employees. It is important to know the trends of the market, meaning what competitors offer and how they recruit.

If you are interviewing a candidate who asks you if you offer a signing bonus or a leadership program, you’ll feel better knowing exactly what that is. LinkedIn has become an indispensable tool for headhunters, and their agencies are engaging in real seduction campaigns to attract candidates.

With a presence on LinkedIn, you will be inspired by what you find, and your offer will be more interesting. In such a market, you must stand out… or give fat salaries. Following a few headhunters allows to read relevant articles full of tricks to attract and retain skilled labour.

Another advantage of a nice LinkedIn profile is that you post it publicly. Millennials are addicted to pictures and videos. I call them generation “Tinder” when it comes time to find a job. They are quickly charmed by what they see. Without an online presence, these young people who are looking for a job can find it difficult to form an opinion about you.

Do they look nice? What is their style? About how old are they? As experts say, ads to find a veterinarian that begin with “young and dynamic team, with cutting edge equipment” no longer work.

For veterinarians and AHTs who are looking for a job: there are so many good reasons! Your LinkedIn profile becomes your resume, accessible at all times, with a picture as well. Hands up those who do not like to update their resume! If your profile is complete, interested employers can find it all. Several positions are available on this platform.

For veterinarians and AHTs who are happy and are seeking employment: you are content, why trouble yourself with building a profile? You are now, but a day may come when your situation might change, which will require an adjustment in your career.

Here are some examples: the arrival of a child that limits your ability to work at night, your spouse finds a job in another region, you want to get closer to your aging parents, your kids are grown and you wish to work while travelling, etc. Better be ready!

Another underrated point is that veterinarians and AHTs are often volunteering for community organizations with low operating budgets. Imagine if your pet project could have a sponsorship, many more animals would benefit from your good care.

What are companies usually looking for when investing in non-profits: visibility. You can offer it to them on social media and LinkedIn. By regularly posting photos and videos of your commitment, you might attract the attention of a benefactor. If you are saving animals anonymously, that is commendable! However, it would be valuable to get those resources to increase aid.

LinkedIn Profile

Good news, updating your profile only requires little time! First, download the app on your mobile phone; it will be easier to see how the information is viewed. The goal is succinct writing.

The most important elements are your picture and your title. Having a professional photo is probably the best cost-benefit investment of your career. You only need a single nice picture, taken by a professional. Magenta studios regularly offer deals for less than $100.

Completing your profile is simple: follow what is asked of you by each section. If you wish to expand your scope beyond your region, write it in English. Always review the end result on the app and not on your computer. The area is reduced in the mobile version.

Add your volunteering activities, governing boards in which you participate, spoken languages, completed training and work experiences. Don’t downplay details; those who will be viewing your profile will appreciate them.

Several veterinarians fear getting approached by customers asking them questions of a medical nature. Remember that you can change the display settings. For example, you can make only your name visible. In the very hypothetical case where a customer wants advice for free, you should answer them to communicate with you at the veterinary facility during your working hours. If applicants or potential employers can’t find you, your efforts will be in vain.

LinkedIn Contacts

Like Facebook, you need contacts to be seen. Aim for at least 500 contacts. Even if you don’t personally know each individual, ask them to connect with you. I have more than 1300 contacts, and only one refused my request. I am linked to many veterinarians in English Canada and the United States that I yet have never met. We have common knowledge, which validates the interest. Don’t forget that we publish professional content on this platform and not pictures of our trips or children.

You can start with your work colleagues or classmates. Then, add pharmaceutical and food company representatives. In the section of the menu named “My Network,” LinkedIn will offer you, according to your contacts, people you may know. It’s a great way to build your network, and the effect becomes exponential. You’ll be surprised you know so many people.

Groups and Businesses

A good technique to learn about emerging trends and issues is to follow interest groups and companies that appeal to you. With the search bar, you can write “veterinary,” and more than 1,500 companies appear: Vet Recruiter, Colorado State University, Hill’s Pet Nutrition, VCA Canada, Passionimo, Vet Strategy, Royal Canin, AAHA, NAVC, etc. Do the same with related areas (human resources, animal shelter, etc.).

You can thus read articles a few times a week from these companies or experts and learn more about the evolution of the market. If you want to get noticed, comment on articles. There are few comments on LinkedIn; therefore we notice those who bother to give their opinion.

Looking for a job or to have an idea of what is offered, you can download the “LinkedIn Jobs” app, which is even more specific to this activity. Otherwise, you can use the LinkedIn app and choose in the “Jobs” filter for a veterinarian position, for example. Alternatively, you can enable the option “Let recruiters know you’re open to opportunities” to be approached.

LinkedIn has not experienced the same explosive development as Facebook or Instagram. Nevertheless, we feel a wind of change with the possibility of creating targeted ads at an affordable cost, and the offer of online training (LinkedIn Learning app). The majority is paid, but the initial costs are often free to lure you in. Those that I did were very professional.

Come on, shine to the level of the good care you offer!


Speaker Information
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H. Perras
Montreal, QC, Canada