My Love Hate Relationship with LinkedIn: The Suggestions
In the first two posts in this series I wrote about why we love LinkedIn and what is so frustrating about LinkedIn. In this last post I will offer a few suggestions I have to solve some of these frustrations. Now, I know LinkedIn has many qualified people working for them and that they probably have reasons for doing things the way they do, but I also know a lot of people feel the way that I do and if we can just get them to listen, that would be a success.
I will say that since my last post LinkedIn has been very responsive and has been expressing concern that they have unhappy customers out there. I was impressed with all the action that they took, though I am just one customer. Regardless, I guess that notion alone means that they are indeed listening.
Here are the frustrations I had last week and some suggestions for possible improvements, if there are any:
This is one that the people at LinkedIn can’t do much about. I would suggest that the general public use LinkedIn more to their advantage. Even if you aren’t looking to make a career move, networking is never a bad thing. Get on LinkedIn and build your network!
I know why limits were put in place in 2003, when the idea was for LinkedIn to be used only to connect with colleagues and people who were already in your network. Well, it’s almost 10 years later and things have changed. LinkedIn is one of the best places for recruiters to find strong candidates. LinkedIn knows that, and they practically ask for it. With job postings, upgrade options to see 2nd and 3rd degree connections, job suggestions on every person’s page, and keyword searches. When are you ever going to need to search for someone you know with a keyword search? Shouldn’t you already know their name?
All I’m saying is, as a recruiter using LinkedIn daily, I will run out of my 3,000 connections this year. Also, the “I don’t know you” option needs to go. Network, people! If you really don’t want to connect, maybe LinkedIn should implement a “decline” button that does not count against you.
We should not be punished for trying to expand our network. Isn’t that what LinkedIn is all about?
This one is easy — have a customer service line available to the public. If you have people responding to instant messages, can’t they also answer phones?
I know that with an upgraded account, such as “LinkedIn Recruiter” you are assigned a Relationship Manager to work with you on any problems you have. But what about people with regular accounts? Just have more accessible customer service for them and the problem is solved.
I’m not going to sugarcoat this — LinkedIn Recruiter is very expensive. Even some of the higher upgrades are breaking the bank, especially if you are a small company. If you are investing in this product and spending the time and money to implement it and learn how to use it, you should also get personalized, one-on-one (one trainer to one company) training.
There is a way to arrange for this, but I think it costs extra. Personalized training should be free and should be scheduled as soon as possible after you are live on the product. This way you can tell the trainer what you want to focus on and ask specific questions in real time, while they are still relevant. You also can wait to move on until the question is completely covered.
As I’ve said in my last two posts, we are very happy with LinkedIn and LinkedIn Recruiter. We wouldn’t (and couldn’t) trade it for the world. I wanted to write this series to address some issues I have seen and air some grievances, but I also realize that LinkedIn is a large company and used by millions of people — it may not be that easy to change.