When you’re a tech giant, like LinkedIn, every little change pisses someone off.
In 2015, when LinkedIn updated their user interface, they got scathing articles like this. What’s ironic is that the complaints in 2015 are the same then as they are for this 2017 update, in fact, people are commenting on this article like it was written this year even though it’s 2 years old.
In 2017, with their most recent update, the response is not different. Here’s a particularly nasty article tearing LinkedIn apart.
I wouldn’t want to be part of LinkedIn’s User Experience Design Team right now! Though I’m sure they were expecting this. After all, software-using-humans have proven resistant to any change. Perhaps it reflects our sense of having no control over our experience on these platforms (but that’s a whole different topic).
In any case, I’ve had Career Enlightenment readers sending me urgent emails with panic about the LinkedIn user interface update.
Here’s my response…”It’s going to be alright!”
Each year LinkedIn takes a great feature and either kills it or makes it a premium feature. This isn’t new. So if we set our expectations low, we’re going to be happier!
The best and most balanced review of the changes were done by my friend Viveka von Rosen HERE.
It’s worth watching her video, since I’m not going to recreate the wheel in this post by reviewing every new thing.
I do want to point out some of the feature changes that affect my readers, particularly the loss of advanced search.
Viveka says it best, “We have lost Advanced Search. We have lost premium search features. We have lost saved searches. We have lost the ability to sort Companies by those we are connected to. You can still use the Boolean modifier OR – but AND and NOT don’t work anymore. You can still sort by relationship, location, industry and company.”
In the FIRE method, I encourage users to use LinkedIn’s advanced search to find sources for information interviews.
In advanced search, you can put a keyword in the Title such that you’re results will be only people who have that word in their job title, or headline.
Although this filter seems to have disappeared, you can still use it. Most of the advanced search filters are hidden under the heading Keywords:
Yes, it’s true you can’t sort results based on degree of connection, but you can still filter by it.
During your job search, you can always sign up for Sales Navigator for a free 3-month trial to get your advanced search filters.
Another big loss is not being able to use filters when running a Company search. You’re stuck with simple keywords. However, this is just an inconvenience, as you can simply look a the companies people work at when running a people search.
I guess my main points here are:
1- be adaptable. Technology changes, it’s ok.
2- there’s always a way to make things work
Sure, advanced search is gone, but because we’re focused on strategy (not the tool) we can still accomplish what that step in our strategy requires.
For example with the FIRE Method:
Find- to find people to network with, there is still plenty of search functionality with LinkedIn, it’s just a bit harder to get a list of companies, so there’s always Zoominfo or Hoovers.
Identify- you can still use Groups, Google News and Alltop to identify the challenges, pain and goals your target companies may be facing
Reach Out- LinkedIn’s new messaging platform is actually much improved!
Engage decision makers- as long you are adding new connections during your info interviews, you’ll have no trouble sending LinkedIn messages to hiring managers.