Should You Apply to Jobs Using Your Resume or LinkedIn Profile? (5 Tips)

Jun 9, 2020

Written by Caitlin Proctor

Written by Caitlin Proctor

Career Expert, ZipJob

An average of 250 resumes are sent for a single opening. See how Zipjob uses professional writers and technology to get your resume noticed.

While applying for jobs online, you may have come across an option to “apply with LinkedIn.” This would allow you to use your LinkedIn profile instead of (or in addition to) a resume. So should you apply to a job with your LinkedIn profile or a resume?

In this article, we’ll answer this question with advice from our experts, along with some good tips when using your LinkedIn profile when applying for jobs.

Should you use LinkedIn to apply to jobs? 

You have likely come across a job posting that allows you to use your LinkedIn profile instead of a resume.

For example:

Using your LinkedIn Profile to Apply for a job

The answer is: you should use both your LinkedIn profile and your resume to apply for jobs.

Almost every site or posting will allow you to apply with your LinkedIn and attach your resume.

For example, once you proceed with the Groupon application from the example above, you’re given an opportunity to upload your resume.

Using both your resume and LinkedIn profile to apply for jobs

The same goes for jobs you find on LinkedIn. You would see an option to attach your resume when applying with your LinkedIn profile. Even with Easy Apply positions, you still have the option to attach a resume.

Adding resume to LinkedIn job application

💡ZipTip: read our expert’s advice on job searching during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Why you should use both your LinkedIn profile and resume

Even if you apply for a job using your LinkedIn profile and capture the attention of the hiring manager, they’re probably going to ask for your resume.

The hiring manager will also usually check your LinkedIn profile before inviting you in for an interview. It’s always better to provide both if you have the opportunity to do so.

There is only one situation where you wouldn’t use your LinkedIn profile: when it’s not up to date. Don’t apply with your LinkedIn profile if you don’t have a photograph, connections or a sufficient amount of information.

Here are some tips to keep in mind when using your LinkedIn profile to apply for jobs.

Best Practices For Using Your LinkedIn Profile to Apply for Jobs: 5 Expert Tips

1. Use keywords

This may come as a surprise to some of you. When you submit either a resume or your LinkedIn profile for an opening, it’s screened by software to see if you’re a good fit for the position before it gets to a hiring manager.

These systems which are utilized by most employers are called Applicant Tracking Systems. These ATS filter out approximately 75% of applicants. Many times, the person is qualified but the resume (or LinkedIn profile) isn’t formatted and keyword optimized.

Are you one of those people? Use Zipjob’s free resume review test to find out:

Check ATS compatibility

These systems scan your resume for relevant skills, education and experience. One thing they scan for is keywords that are relevant to the position. Having the right keywords on your resume and LinkedIn will help you get past these filters. Look at the job descriptions before you send in your application to see which keywords you can include.

#2 – Professional Image 

Your image on LinkedIn needs to be professional. It’s usually the first impression you have on a potential employer and many make the mistake of uploading an unprofessional image.

Check out this guide on using a good image on LinkedIn

LinkedIn Photo

#3 – Don’t Copy and Paste Your Resume

Many also make the mistake of copying and pasting their resume into LinkedIn. Your resume is a document that is detailed and tailored to the position you’re applying to. It should answer the question “Why are you a good fit for this position?”

Your LinkedIn is more of an overview of your career. This is why LinkedIn hasn’t replaced the need for a resume. It’s also why a hiring manager would still ask you for a resume if you apply with your LinkedIn profile.

#4 – Be Active on LinkedIn

If you have 7 connections and no photo uploaded, don’t use your LinkedIn profile to apply for jobs. This would do more harm than good. You need to be active on LinkedIn with a decent amount of connections.

Making connections on LinkedIn isn’t difficult. You can search for your contacts via email and browse through your recommended connections. You should also join groups that are relevant to your industry or the position you’re targeting.

#5 – Get Endorsements and Recommendations

Having colleagues and other professionals leave endorsements and recommendations will make your profile more effective. The best way to get these endorsements and recommendations is by giving them to others. You will be surprised to see the number of people that will return the favor!

We wrote a good post here on writing a good LinkedIn recommendation.


You should use both your resume and LinkedIn profile when applying for a job whenever possible. Most jobs still require a resume, but most hiring managers will also want to see a solid LinkedIn profile before they interview you.

If you need more advice, check out our professional resume writers who will help you craft that perfect LinkedIn profile and resume to land more interviews.

Good luck with your job search!

Related posts:

9 out of 10 recruiters use LinkedIn to find job candidates. Is your profile recruiter-ready?

An average of 250 resumes are sent for a single opening. See how Zipjob uses professional writers and technology to get your resume noticed.

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