LinkedIn rolled out what is being called the “new desktop experience” in late 2016/early 2017. If you are frustrated with finding functions & features, keep reading. Or click over to my home page and download my free 16-page guide, “Navigating the “New” Linked” which includes screenshots and walks you through all of the changes. 

► The “Advice for Contacting” section has been removed. If you take one action as a result of this article, make it this one:  Add your email address, phone numbers, and social media profile contacts at the bottom of your Summary section. Doing this gives potential employers, recruiters, and other contacts a way to reach you outside of LinkedIn.

► The “Notify Your Network” setting has also changed significantly — and this is a feature all jobseekers should be aware of. When you are making significant changes to your profile, you want to turn this setting off so that your network is not notified about each change you make – which could be a big tip-off that you are getting ready to launch a job search, not to mention annoying!

When making major updates – or if you don’t want your network to know about changes – turn off global notifications: go to “Privacy & Settings,” then click on “Privacy” and then “Sharing Profile Edits” and you’ll see the “on/off” switch. Also new, LI added a notification on/off button under each job you enter. Please note – this button is ONLY for that job, not any other changes.

► LinkedIn has reduced the sections you can add to your profile from 19 down to 13. If you had content in one of the 6 sections removed, and you didn’t back up your profile, that information is now gone. The most popular sections eliminated were “Causes You Care About” and “Supported Organizations.” You can add that information into the “Volunteer Experience” section.

► InMails policy has changed. Free accounts used to get a limited number of free InMails, but not anymore. Free accounts receive zero InMail credits and Premium levels receive credits based on the plan selected.

However, one thing that hasn’t changed is that you can still Message fellow Group members directly (even if they are 2nd or 3rd degree contacts), and that will get you around the InMail requirement. This is a great tip for networking your way to hiring managers within your industry.

If you are a member of a LinkedIn Group with the person you’re trying to contact, you can directly send a Message instead of having to send an InMail. But you can only do it from within the Group. When you are within the Group, click on the member’s name and you will see a “Message” button.

► The link to the Groups page used to be under the “Interests” section on the main navigation menu. Now, Groups are in the “More” section on the main navigation bar.

► When you request to connect with someone, we recommend that you include a customized message, however, LI has made that more difficult. If you click on the “Connect” button within the “People You May Know” section on the “My Network” page, it doesn’t give you the option of customizing the invite. To customize your connection request click on the person’s LinkedIn profile and then click on the “Connect” button. You will then see a box to “Add a Note” to your LinkedIn invitation.

So here is your to-do list:

  • Download a copy of my “Navigating the “New” LinkedIn” from my home page.
  • Double-check your privacy settings. Go to “Privacy & Settings,” then click on “Privacy” and check each setting.
  • Add your contact information to the bottom of the Summary section.
  • Add relevant information that has been removed to the “Volunteer Experience” section.
  • Get familiar with where you can find your “Groups” now.