Thursday, July 1, 2010

LinkedIn Delivering Some REAL Value

You know what I hate? Technology for technology sake. You know what I love? When technology comes along and solves a majore pain point by being smart and anticipating my needs. Guess who just did the latter (okay smarty pants, you knew the answer already because I gave it away in the title). Yup, LinkedIn.

I've been a fan of LinkedIn for a while and if my recollection is correct, I've been a member since 2003 which is a long time in the life of a social network. While I originally liked LinkedIn for it's ability to connect me to other smart business folks, the functionality was pretty flat beyond being an online repository for resumes for the first 5-6 years. Over the last 18 months, they've really ramped up their efforts and have made the site much more social in nature.

This morning, they ratcheted things up on more notch by offering a great feature which essentially automates the matchmaking around forwarding on job recommendations. Here is a screenshot of the e-mail I received from LinkedIn this morning:

For any of you reading this in an RSS reader without graphic capabilities, essentially the new LinkedIn functionality works this way:

  • Person A pings me with a job request
  • LinkedIn looks through my contacts for people that have that job description in their current or past history
  • I am then offered the ability to forward that description onto my network (see e-mail template on LinkedIn below).
  • Even better, LinkedIn looks into the connections of my connections and offers to allow my connections to forward this description onto their network thus adding value for me AND my network.

The other great thing is that I can delete (or add) additional folks to the e-mail. And as always, I can customize the messaging. In this particular case, I was able to forward this job description from Karen onto five people, five of which I wouldn't have immediately thought of when I originally received the request had LinkedIn not done the heavy lifting for me.

Kudos to you LinkedIn. It's functionality like this that is going to keep you relevant and in business for a long time. Keep up the great work!


  1. This is neat. I'm glad that LinkedIn is stepping up the pace of new features. I'm working on collecting feedback on a few use cases for integrating LinkedIn with social apps and would love to get your input as well.

  2. Babar - keep me posted. I'd love to take a look at what you're doing.

  3. Good post - LinkedIn gets lost in the shuffle.

    They could do a lot more to help businesses & brands market themselves there. IMO they've maybe been a bit too cautious as they've tried to control their platform far more than any other social media company. Here's hoping they open things up & make more than 12 apps widely available.

  4. Chris - I think your'e spot on. Fortunately with all the competition from Facebook who seems to be getting more and more business friendly by the day and with Twitter, blogs and online communities siphoning off LinkedIn interest, it's a "change or die" situation. It seems like LI is choosing the latter option.

  5. Aaron, thanks for pointing this out, hadn't realized this had been improved. Been very excited about their updates to Groups lately, very helpful.

  6. Kyle - happy to share when I find out cool stuff.