Last night, I opened a friend’s LinkedIn profile on my phone and saw a request for data about him below the banner section. This was a new approach to LinkedIn Skills data collection.
Mind you, I wasn’t in his Skills & Endorsements section. I had only opened his profile. LinkedIn’s request looked like this:
None of The Above
Playing along, I looked at the four options and thought, “Those aren’t his top skills. Why are they asking me about those?”
Then I looked at his profile. He doesn’t list any of the four items shown by LinkedIn as his top three Skills.
Next, I checked another friend’s profile. Same story. No match between the skills LinkedIn asked about and her top three Skills.
LinkedIn is Busy Collecting Data About You
Then I noticed and clicked the “Learn more” link at the bottom right. It took me here:
After reading the explanation, it’s clear to me that LinkedIn wants all the data about us they can gather. And they’re getting aggressive about collecting it.
If this interests you, then you can also read about the three-star rating system they introduced for Skills last month.
First-Level Connections — LinkedIn’s Best Source
Moving on, I checked a second-level connection’s profile on my phone. LinkedIn didn’t ask me for any information about her.
Thus, it’s important to know that LinkedIn has changed from:
- A site that lets you share information about yourself.
- To a site that asks your first-level connections about you.
LinkedIn Data Quality
But why? Beyond its original Skills endorsements, which are pretty dodgy, the company’s attempt to learn more about users’ skills goes to LinkedIn data quality. The more accurate their data is, the more valuable it is.
We’re seeing the early days of a new way of matching people to jobs.
Employers need people with certain skills. LinkedIn is creating a global database of:
- Who has which skills.
- Their competency levels.
- Where they’re located.
Also, as mentioned above, they’re no longer relying on members’ self-reports. They’re actively seeking third-party input.
What Does LinkedIn Data Collection Mean to You?
Your LinkedIn presence is evolving into two segments:
- What you say about yourself.
- Information provided by your first-level connections.
What you can do:
- Continue to optimize your profile for LinkedIn SEO and humans.
- Respect Skills & Endorsements as a LinkedIn power tool.
- Reconsider the connections you have with frenemies and competitors.
Let’s Connect on LinkedIn
Please don’t hesitate to invite me to connect on LinkedIn here: Donna Svei, Executive Resume Writer. The more I know about my readers, the better I can make my blog.
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© 2018 – 2019, Donna Svei. All rights reserved.
Donna Svei, an executive resume writer and former C-level executive, retained search consultant, and CPA, writes all of AvidCareerist’s posts. She has written for and been quoted by leading business, general, and career media outlets, including Forbes, Mashable, Fast Company, Entrepreneur, Lifehacker, Ask.com, Social Media Today, IT World, SmartBrief, Payscale, Business News Daily, and the Muse. Let her background and experience inform your job search strategy and decision making.