Do LinkedIn Endorsements Really Make Any Difference?

John Krautzel
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LinkedIn endorsements provide a quick and easy way for others to validate your skills and aptitudes. Because the process only takes a few clicks, endorsements don't carry a lot of weight in hiring decisions. On the other hand, the endorsements are a highly visible part of your professional social media presence, and the right endorsements improve that presence while the wrong ones degrade it. Follow these tips to improve your LinkedIn endorsements.

Keep Your Skills and Expertise Relevant

LinkedIn allows you to select skills and areas of expertise to add to your public profile. Most people select from this list when adding endorsements. If you want to avoid random endorsements in areas not related to your career path, select at least 10 skills you want prospective employers to know about, encouraging future endorsers to stick to those areas.

Ask the Right People

Solicit LinkedIn endorsements from former supervisors and co-workers. Specifically, ask people who know about your qualifications and have benefited from your work in the past. These type of endorsements hold more weight than endorsements from those who have no clear connection with your work. If you want to take a more indirect route, start by providing endorsements for people who you hope will endorse you. When endorsees get the notifications about your endorsements, they are likely to reciprocate. Matter of fact, it is a good idea to get in the habit of providing endorsements for all bosses and co-workers whose work you appreciate. This helps build your professional network.

Avoid Clutter

Get in the habit of regularly reviewing your LinkedIn endorsements and hiding those that are irrelevant or from people not familiar with your work. For example, endorsements from close relatives or high school friends living on the opposite coast do not add anything to your professional social media presence. They might even look dishonest if the connection is really slim. Likewise, hide endorsements in skill areas that you don't want to highlight, and remove skill areas with endorsements that are simply false. For example, if someone randomly endorses your programming skills, but your expertise in this area is limited, you should go ahead and remove programming from your skill set. This also removes the false endorsement.

Look at the Big Picture

Pay attention to the overall story that your LinkedIn profile tells; this is much more important than its individual components. Public LinkedIn endorsements should add details to that story. More endorsements are not always better; instead, focus on endorsements that show off the skills needed in your industry.

Although your LinkedIn endorsements are unlikely to be the deciding factor in whether you get a job, they do contribute to your professional persona so be sure to keep them relevant and clutter-free. Improve your profile further by requesting recommendations from those endorsers who know your work best.

Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles at


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