This article also appears on our blog for social change organizations, Engaging Volunteers.
At VolunteerMatch, we’ve always known that volunteering and service can give a prospective employee an important edge in the job market. Giving back, particularly with one’s expertise, not only demonstrates soft skills like caring, commitment, and leadership, it also can lead to the development of new talents and important new additions to one’s professional portfolio.
That’s why we’re excited to share the news that LinkedIn has just released some important new features that elevate volunteering in the professional world. Through the social networking service’s new Volunteer Experience & Causes section, individuals can now share the causes they care about and the organizations they support.
Most importantly, they can now highlight relevant volunteer experience at nonprofit organizations, including the skills and functional areas in which they worked. And when that work was with an organization that has a Company Page at LinkedIn, the name of the organization becomes a hotlink over to that organization’s Company Page. So discovery and awareness is only a click away.
As one LinkedIn team member put it, “That’s right, LinkedIn is putting a stake in the ground that volunteerism can and should be a part of everyone’s professional brand.”
We couldn’t agree more. Over 120 million professionals and some two million companies and organizations currently use LinkedIn – making it by far the largest social network focused exclusively on professional life. While the full impact of these new features is yet to be determined for volunteers, nonprofits and companies with volunteer engagement programs, there’s no doubt that it will be big.
Keep an eye on this blog in coming days…. We’ll delve deeper into the new Volunteer Experience & Causes functionality at LinkedIn and what it may mean for your work. In the meantime, Twitter users may want to follow @LinkedIn4Good for updates on how LinkedIn is connecting talent to opportunity to change the world.