LinkedIn algorithm

LinkedIn’s Search Algorithm Favors the Employed

My clients want recruiters to find them on LinkedIn. So I test the LinkedIn algorithm to understand how to rank profiles in search results. 

It’s a fun labyrinth to muck around in — lots of nooks and crannies and hypotheses to test.

Be “Currently Employed” to Please the LinkedIn Algorithm

I’ve noticed I can help my unemployed clients gain rank by showing them as currently employed.

To do this, I use one of 2 approaches:

1. Add a Current Position

One approach is to add a current position.

It might look like this:

Company Name: Donna Svei Consulting

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

Time Period: 2021 — I currently work here

Many of my clients do some consulting while looking for their next job.

They just need to set up a LinkedIn company page (30 minutes), add a logo, and they’re good to go.

2. Don’t Update Your Employment Date

Another option we use is not updating their employment date on LinkedIn.

We use accurate dates on their resume. But on LinkedIn, we often show them as currently employed at their last company.

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

You must have the “I currently work here” box checked for at least one job on your profile to get the ranking boost.

Like this:

LinkedIn "I Currently Work Here"

Don’t Let LinkedIn Seduce You with Its “Career Break” Feature

LinkedIn introduced a Career Break feature for profiles in 1Q22. While it’s great for past career breaks, DO NOT use it for current unemployment.


Because the LinkedIn algorithm picks it up as “unemployed” and punishes your profile in search results rankings.

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See the “Comments” section below for other helpful options.

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.

Image Courtesy of Olu Eletu
Updated February 2024

© 2013 – 2024, 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,

    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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