There's a new feature out on LinkedIn, called the “Volunteer Experience & Causes” that will let you properly showcase your volunteer work on your profile. This is an important new addition to your online résumé because it might just boost your job prospects. According to LinkedIn data, 41 percent of employers consider volunteer work to be as important as paid work.
"It shows that you're a passionate professional who's adept at multitasking," Krista Canfield, the senior PR manager of LinkedIn, tells SavvySugar. "It's also worth noting that you can develop new skills during your volunteer work which will help you become a multifaceted professional. You may be a sales person by trade, but perhaps you helped organize your non-profit's most recent fundraising event. Noting that experience, and the skills that you learned during that experience ("event planning," "event marketing," etc.) can make you a more attractive employee and business partner."
In addition to adding the volunteer work to your LinkedIn, Krista also advises to add LinkedIn Skills to their profiles if they've truly mastered new ones as a result of those experiences. All you need to do is search for skills here and add them to your profile. Updating your skills will make you come out in more relevant searches when hiring managers, clients, business partners are looking for people like you on the professional networking website.
Here's how to work the new feature:
- Log in to your LinkedIn account.
- Scroll down to where it says, "Add sections to reflect achievements and experiences on your profile" and click on the "Add sections" button.
- You'll see a list of sections to choose from. Click on the "Volunteer Experience and Causes" and fill in details such as the causes you believe in, the organization you donate your time to, and what your volunteer role entails.
Volunteering is an opportunity to chase your passions and to challenge yourself outside of work. Featuring this on your LinkedIn may increase your chances of scoring your dream job, especially if the skills relate to the field. It also makes you a more interesting and diverse candidate. Do you include volunteer work on your résumé?