LinkedIn algorithm

LinkedIn’s Search Algorithm Favors the Employed

My resume and LinkedIn profile clients want recruiters to find them on LinkedIn. Because of this, I continuously test the LinkedIn algorithm to figure out SEO techniques to get them the best possible page position in LinkedIn search results. It’s a fun labyrinth to muck around in – lots of nooks and crannies and hypotheses to test.

Be Currently Employed

I’ve noticed I can help my unemployed clients gain rank in search results if we add a position to their profiles that creates a current employer and job title for them.

This added position can be very simple. It might look like:

Company Name: Donna Svei Consulting.

Title: [Most Important Keyword Recruiters Would Use to Find You].

Time Period: 2019 — I currently work here.

Most of my clients are at a place in their careers where they are doing at least a little consulting while they’re looking for their next job (see the “Comments” section below for other “I currently work here” options). They just need to set up a company page (30 minutes), add a logo, and they’re good to go.

Don’t Update Your Most Recent Employment Date

Another option we use is simply not updating their employment date on LinkedIn. While we make sure to use accurate dates on their resume, on LinkedIn we often leave them showing that they’re currently employed at their last company.

Given that most people don’t update their profiles often, this works too. I’ve never had a client tell me that a prospective employer questioned them on this detail.

The Box You Have to Check

The key, for a boost in the search result rankings, appears to be having the “I currently work here” box checked for at least one job on your profile.

Like this:

LinkedIn "I Currently Work Here"

Test Before & After

If you’re unemployed, do a people search on your most important keyword and see where you rank in search results.

Then, using one of the methods described above, show yourself as currently employed. Repeat the people/keyword search. I bet you’ve improved your search results page rank! I’ve seen some people get a little boost and others get a big boost.

Let’s Connect on LinkedIn

Please don’t hesitate to invite me to connect on LinkedIn here: Donna Svei, Executive Resume Writer. The more I know about my readers, the better I can make my blog.

Featured by: SmartBrief on Your Career
Image Courtesy of Olu Eletu
Updated May 2019

© 2013 – 2019, Donna Svei. All rights reserved.

Comments 5

  1. From: Dorte Møller Madsen

    Thank you – what do you then advise your clients to do – if they “Don”t want to invent a job?”

    Hi Dorte,

    I hesitated to add this, and didn’t because it’s not my favorite solution (here’s why: Should You Put “Looking” in Your LinkedIn Profile’s Headline?, but…

    They can make Company = Seeking my next opportunity and Title = [Their most important key word]. Then they check the “I currently work here box.”

    Thank you for asking :),


  2. Fun feedback:

    Via email: After my update, I noticed also that my status went from “Expert” back to “All-Star,” immediately. Not sure what that brings you, but it does appear better. :)

    Via Twitter: Keith Dotson ‏@kad75043, I tried it and it did boost my ranking.

  3. I noticed today that my friend, let’s call her Jane Smith, has updated her profile to show her current company as “Smith Household,” and her title as “CEO.” She didn’t list details regarding job responsibilities and accomplishments, but I could see doing a lot with this concept, even for unemployeds who aren’t currently raising families.


    I agree. Work is hardly the only scenario where we play a role and deploy our life skills. Home, volunteer work, hobbies, etc. all give us the opportunity to develop and demonstrate skills we need to be successful in our work lives.

    Thank you,


  4. Thanks for your advice Donna! I’m back to All Star status as well!

    I love it John! Thank you for sharing.


  5. Another way to address this for job seekers is to put a volunteer position in that section instead of in the volunteer or causes section, as volunteer roles provide opportunities to use many of the skills gained in employment.
    E.g., Tutor at CMI Agency (volunteer)
    and then a description of the job.
    It’s important to fill that employment gap and valuable for those who wish to highlight what they have been doing since employment finished. Even a couple of hours a week volunteering is valuable.

    Hi Joyce,

    That works too…although I prefer to see paid employment or consulting…that’s not always possible.

    Thank you,


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