LinkedIn have recently announced changes to how skills are assessed and advertised on personal profiles, and it’s likely to impact the future of job applications. Here’s what you need to know!
How did skill assessment on LinkedIn used to work?
Up until now, LinkedIn users have been able to state their proficiency in any number of skills, covering any number of areas (from creative writing to coding). These self-verified skills could then then ‘endorsed’ by friends or colleagues, basically as a way of saying “hey, they’re not making this up. I’ve seen them do it. Promise!”… and that was pretty much the end of it. Easy.
Through exam-style assessments (eek!) specific skills can now be tested and verified directly on the platform. This means that employers will find it easier to narrow down their search criteria for potential employees. It also means they’ll know who’s all talk, and who means business.
Just put your skills to the test in one of these short digital exams, and earn a digital stamp of approval for your profile.
If you pass, you keep the badge for a year (at which point you’ll need to re-test). Fail a test, and you have to wait 3 months to try again.
Why the change?
Research commissioned by LinkedIn revealed that 69% of employees feel skills are now more important to recruiters than education. For those of us who have applied to any jobs recently, this shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise.
Let’s face it, we’ve ALL said in an interview that we’re ‘proficient with Excel’ (despite how many years it may have been since we touched a spreadsheet). It’s generally agreed that, given the correct motivation, anyone could probably become proficient in Excel anyway… right? Well, now that motivation is here – in the form of a LinkedIn badge of honour.
If skills mean more than ever before, then better methods of measuring skills were an inevitability. In the age of data, metrics mean everything.
Is this change here to stay?
The beta mode has been running since March, and though only 2 million people have used it – a fraction of LinkedIn’s 630 million users – early results are promising. Members who completed skills assessments have been almost 30% more likely to land jobs than those who didn’t, according to LinkedIn. A fairly impressive figure.
So, for the time being, it looks like skill-based competency is king, and we’ll all need to get onboard.