Did you know that over the past couple of years, the healthcare industry’s presence on LinkedIn has been increasing at a rapid rate? In fact, at the end of 2018, LinkedIn recorded over 5.0 million healthcare professionals using the platform – a 30% increase from the year before!
Given this upward trend, it’s clear that many healthcare professionals consider LinkedIn to be a powerful resource – a belief that we all at Pacific Companies share. Among the major platforms, LinkedIn is a bit different from the others. For one thing, it is less “social” and more “business” than Facebook’s friends-and-family model. LinkedIn is older than the other “big name” social media platforms, and the business differentiation is a useful advantage for doctors. So what benefits does it hold for physicians and other health professionals, and how can creating a great profile help you have a more successful career? If you work within the healthcare industry, LinkedIn is not only useful for job seekers. It is also a networking platform that allows you to stay active within the industry, establish yourself as an expert in your field, and stay connected with colleagues. LinkedIn’s platform allows you to create a profile that goes well beyond just a resume. It allows you to showcase your experience along with your skills, personality, and interests as well. Rather than thinking of LinkedIn as an electronic version of your resume, think of it as a way to showcase your brand, (who you are as both a professional and as a person) establish yourself as an expert in your field, and stay connected with colleagues.
One of the key benefits of using LinkedIn is that it fits in around your busy schedule – so you can network with peers from around the world when it suits you. There’s one feature of LinkedIn that you might not be aware of, and it is certainly worth bearing in mind when using it. LinkedIn is highly optimized for scanning by search engines, particularly Google. So if your profile/comments contain the keywords and phrases people are searching for, they could end up on a Google search results page. The current shortage of healthcare professionals, specifically physicians, means there aren’t enough available applicants to fill open positions. As a result, hiring managers and recruiters are using LinkedIn to look for candidates who may not have applied to the job, but could be a good fit. For healthcare professionals who are not interested in new career opportunities, but who want to learn about opportunities to learn and grow in the industry, it’s also important to be active on LinkedIn.
There’s a common misconception amongst healthcare professionals that LinkedIn is only for job seeking. However, if someone is looking for an expert on a specific healthcare topic, they’re going to want to see your LinkedIn profile to verify your credibility. Therefore, having a well-written LinkedIn profile will help you establish yourself as an expert in your area of specialization, and will help you add speaking engagements and other consulting opportunities to your repertoire. The great thing about LinkedIn is that hospitals and other healthcare providers are now picking up on it as well. Having the ability to follow healthcare organizations not only allows you to do more research on medical facilities that you are interested in working for, but also allows you to connect with colleagues at your current place of employment that you may not have much interaction with.
To summarize, if you are a physician and you are looking for a platform that will help reputation management, career advancement, continuing education, enhanced online visibility, get referrals, network with other providers, healthcare facilities and mentors then LinkedIn is the one for you.