Are recommendations on LinkedIn important? It’s true that the final hiring decision will not be made based on what a past client or coworker says about you. But your goal is to grab the attention of a recruiter way earlier in the process, and for that, recommendations are extremely useful. Recommendations can bolster your reputation and improve the first impression you make.
While you won’t land your dream job solely because your teammate said you are results-oriented, a series of positive recommendations (along with your qualifications) might prompt a recruiter to reach out to you. Recommendations can also give the hiring manager a good sense of who you are beyond your resume. They are a way for you to showcase some of your soft skills or highlight competencies that are not visible at first glance.
There is plenty of advice out there on how to write a good recommendation, but not a whole lot on how to request one. Majority of people give up on asking simply because they find it awkward or don’t know how to phrase it. Here are two crucial tips to keep in mind as you start working on this, as well as two templates that will make your life easier.
- Be strategic about who you want to be recommended by. LinkedIn recommendations stand out especially when they are written by industry leaders and people who worked directly with you and understand the matter they are recommending you for. It is good to have a balance of your peers, clients, people who you directly reported to and those who you directly managed or mentored.
- When you ask them to write something about you don’t just say please write something nice about me. Give them specific guidelines. The more specific your request is, the better the outcome. If you worked with a client on a Scrum project on which you successfully managed a tight budget and delivered exceptional results- ask them to discuss those specific elements.
Here are a few examples of how you can phrase your request.
Hello [First Name],
I hope you are having a good and productive week!
I know your time is very important, so I’ll get straight to the point! I am trying to update my LI profile so it gives a more accurate representation of my skills and expertise. You are someone who I highly respect as a professional, and I would be honored to have a recommendation written by you. I would appreciate it if you could highlight my skills in [area] and [area].
I’d be more than happy to write you a recommendation in return. Just let me know if there is anything specific you’d like me to call attention to.
Would you be comfortable doing me this favor? Either way, no pressure.
Hello [First Name],
I hope all is well! [Friendly comment, question]
I am touching base to make a small request from you. I am currently looking to move from my role in X to Y and I need to highlight my ability to [ ] and [ ] to achieve that!
Back in [company’s name] I really enjoyed working with you on that project on [ ] where I learned a lot from you about [mentioned skills], so I thought you would be the best person to ask to write me a recommendation emphasizing those skills. I truly would appreciate it!
I am happy to send over any additional information you might need for this. Also very happy to write you a recommendation back.
Remember that your LinkedIn is out there even when you are not job searching. It is important for your brand that your network can see those good words other professionals had to say about you at all times. Plus, the most effective comment you can get on your work you will get right after you completed it. So do not procrastinate, ask for those recommendations sooner rather than later.