It might make sense for you to add credentials to your name on LinkedIn. If you believe they will achieve either of the following benefits, then go for it.
- Make you rank higher in LinkedIn search results because a given credential is also a keyword.
- Make recruiters more likely to click on your profile.
What LinkedIn Allows in Your Name Fields
Regardless of what you might read to the contrary, LinkedIn does allow you to use suffixes and certifications in your profile’s Last Name field. Click the link to see exactly what LinkedIn says about names and credentials.
After you’re convinced it’s OK to use credentials after your name, then you need to choose which ones to use. It’s smart for you to show credentials relevant to your current career.
When you do, you get two benefits:
- A LinkedIn SEO boost.
- You make an immediate, credible impression.
(Note: It’s a good idea to match the credentials you feature on your LinkedIn profile to those you feature on your resume.)
How to Use Your Last Name Field for Credentials
How to place your credentials after your last name:
- Enter your last name in the last name field.
- Followed by a comma and a space.
- Followed by your credentials separated with a comma.
As on your resume, I recommend limiting yourself to two credentials after your name. Beyond my counsel, LinkedIn recently limited the number of characters you can use in your last name field, so it’s hard to go too wild.
More Places to Share Credentials on Your LinkedIn Profile
You can also use the About, Education, Licenses & Certifications, and Skills sections of your profile to showcase your credentials.
Overall, don’t try too hard. Many people overshare. As noted above, limit yourself to credentials that are relevant to your current aspirations. If you think you might be going too far, ask a respected colleague or two for their reactions.
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Updated January 2021
© 2013 – 2021, Donna Svei. All rights reserved.
Donna Svei, an executive resume writer and former C-level executive, retained search consultant, and CPA, authors all of AvidCareerist’s posts. She has written for and been quoted by 100+ business, general, and career media outlets, including Forbes, Mashable, Fast Company, Inc., Entrepreneur, the New York Times, USA Today, Time, CBS, the BBC, Lifehacker, Social Media Today, IT World, SmartBrief, Payscale, and Business News Daily.
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