Key terms you need to know to make your LinkedIn profile mission ready.

Profile. Your presence on the LinkedIn platform. You can customize it, upload projects and content, connect with colleagues and employers, join groups, and more.

Profile picture. The image that you upload to your LinkedIn profile. This should be a flattering, current, professional, civilian image that conveys that you are likable, competent, influential, professional, and forward-thinking.

Public profile. The version of your profile that is visible to the public. This can be substantially different from the profile that your connections see. Check out Security and Privacy Settings in LinkedIn for more information.

Public profile URL. This is the unique URL that the public can use to access your LinkedInprofile. This is the link that will appear in search results when someone googles your name. You can include this URL on your resume to make it easier for a hiring manager to find you on LinkedIn. You can also customize your public profile URL.

Connection. A person who accepts your connection request or whose connection request you’ve accepted. Similar to “friends” on Facebook.

Degrees. How closely you are connected to someone.

  • 1st Level Connection. People to whom you are directly connected. The number of your first level connections appears on your LinkedIn profile. You need 50 1st level connections for all-star status.
  • 2nd Level Connection. People who are connected to your 1st level connections, but are not directly connected to you. Think of this as in-laws or friends of friends.
  • 3rd Level Connection. People who are connected to your 2nd Level Connections, but not to you. Think of these people as friends of your friends’ friends. 

Network. Everyone who is connected to you in some way via LinkedIn.

Headline. The default for this field is your current job title and company name. However, it is fully customizable, so you can make this say whatever you’d like, up to 120 characters. This field is required for all-star status.

Header. The area at the top of your profile where you can upload an image that conveys your professional brand.

Summary. Think of the summary as your “elevator speech.” LinkedIn gives you 2,000 characters to sell yourself, but best practice is to keep your summary brief. For more information on your Summary, check out What Makes a LinkedIn Summary Stellar? This field is required for all star status.

Skills. Skills are often keywords that represent your proficiencies. Your skills might include “organizational leadership,” “attention to detail,” or “public speaking.” For more information on skills, check out How to Select the Skills that Appear on Your LinkedIn Profile.You can add up to 50 skills to your profile, but three are required for all-star status.

Endorsements. LinkedIn allows your connections to endorse you for the specific skills. This can be a powerful advertisement for your experience if many of connections endorse you for the same skills. You can choose the order that your skills appear on your profile, or whether they even appear at all.

Recommendations. Your connections also have the opportunity to write recommendations for you.. These can be extremely powerful, and like endorsements, you can choose whether a recommendation appears on your profile. You can also make a request that a connection write a recommendation to appear on your profile. If you do this, ensure you personalize the request, and return the favor and write a recommendation for your connection. Recommendations have a 3,000 character limit.

Experience. This is the place to go into detail about your job responsibilities and achievements. Ensure you include your current position and at least two previous positions. A good rule of thumb is to include 3 positions and/or the last fifteen years of your work history.

Education. Include your education here. Do you have an Associates degree? A Bachelors? How about a Masters or a Ph.D.? Add all of your post high-school education. Content is required in this field for all-star status.  According to LinkedIn, profiles that contain education content receive 7 times more profile views.

Volunteer Experience. All experience, whether paid or unpaid, is valuable. A 2011 survey conducted by LinkedIn revealed that one out of every five hiring managers in the U.S. has hired a candidate because of their volunteer work experience. Does your volunteer experience help you align with your career goals? If it does, then seriously consider adding it to your LinkedIn profile, as you would to your master resume. Do you volunteer regularly? Do you serve on the board of an organization as a volunteer? If the answer is yes, add it to your profile!

Certification. Include certifications in this section.

Honors & Awards. If you’ve earned a Medal of Honor or Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service, Commendation, or Achievement medal, consider including them here.

Projects. In the Projects section, you can add more detail about specific projects. They will be associated with the position you held while you worked on the project, and you can include other people with whom you worked on that project if you are connected to them.

Job Seeker Account. A type of LinkedIn account that provides more information and capabilities tailored to people who are actively seeking a new job. It is normally reserved for paid subscribers, but LinkedIn offers a free 1-year Job Seeker subscription to Veterans and those currently serving in the Armed Forces.

Group. If you are looking for a place where people who have a similar interests can share information and hold discussions, you should join a relevant LinkedIn group. Marine for Life has several groups, including one for each of its for regions: Northeast, Southeast, Central, and West. For more information, check out What are LinkedIn Groups For?.

Company Page. This is basically a LinkedIn profile for a company or organization. It’s worthwhile to follow companies you are interested in, as well as professional and networking organizations, such as the Marine For Life Network.

Activity Broadcast. Anything you do on LinkedIn (from making minor tweaks to your profile to sharing an article or joining a group), is considered an activity. If your Activity Broadcast is on, then this activity will be shared by connections who are able to view your activity feed. 

Activity Feed. This is where your activity appears. You can select who is able to view your activity feed (Everyone, Your Network, Your Connections, or Only You), and determine the level of privacy that works for you. Check out Security and Privacy Settings in LinkedIn for more information.

Message. A way to have a private conversation with another person on LinkedIn. Some users do not accept messages.

InMail. A way to have a private conversation with another person on LinkedIn; with InMail, you can send private messages to your 1st connections. Depending on your LinkedIn subscription type you may receive a specific number of InMail credits. To check this number, go to “Manage your account” under the Privacy & Settings tab. Some users accept only InMail, and not regular messages. If you have a premium account you can send InMail to anyone on LinkedIn, including the people who have been viewing your profile, or a hiring manager you have identified at a company you would like to target.

All-Star. LinkedIn measures the completeness of your profile. “All-Star” indicates that LinkedIn considers your profile to be complete.

Badge. When you have a Job Seeker profile and you are actively seeking a job, you can include a graphic on your profile to let others know you are seeking new opportunities.

Applicant Insights: When you find a job posting you want to apply to and you have a Job Seeker account, you can use Applicant Insights to see how you compare to other applicants on education, top skills, and other criteria.

Featured Applicant: When you have a Job Seeker account and submit an application, you can select the Featured Applicant option to ensure you appear at the top of the list of applicants in the job poster’s inbox.

Still searching for more in-depth assistance regarding your transition, education, or job search? Contact your installation’s Transition Readiness and Family Member Employment Assistance staff and ask the Marine For Life Network on LinkedIn.