LinkedIn just released a new feature: LinkedIn Endorsements. Today is the first day that I have spotted this new feature. It appears when you visit a person’s LinkedIn profile. Upon visiting, a box appears above their profile where you can choose which of their stated Skills & Expertise you endorse.
LinkedIn states: Now you can endorse your connections for their skills and expertise! Your picture will appear on their profile next to what you’ve endorsed.
Endorse Skills & Expertise on LinkedInThis is how the new LinkedIn Endorsements functionality looks:
The Skills and Expertise section is a relatively new area on the LinkedIn profile. It replaces the old Specialties section where people listed their “skillsets” as a free form list. Skills & Expertise takes the specialties concept a step further by collecting this information and providing these keywords as suggestions to other users. In this way, LinkedIn users can “discover the expertise that other professionals have and see how the demand for these skills is changing over time.”
The issue with this is that you are relying on a person to accurately describe their own skills and expertise. Everyone considers themselves an expert regardless of their true abilities. This new functionality aims to provide a more unbiased way of rating a person’s true skillsets by polling their peers.
I predict this information will be used in ranking search results within LinkedIn’s search engine. Currently, LinkedIn’s search algorithm ranks results by the number of times keywords are repeated on a profile. Obviously this method doesn’t provide the best results.
Many people use LinkedIn’s search to find potential prospects, candidates, vendors, partners, etc. Since the name of the individual is not usually known by the searcher, keywords are entered into LinkedIn’s search engine. It behooves LinkedIn to provide the most accurate search results. By having users rank others by Skills & Expertise (keywords) they are ensuring the results are more accurate and honest. This is a huge step for LinkedIn.
Watch a Tour of the New LinkedIn Endorsements
This new functionality comes quickly on the heels of a re-skinning of LinkedIn’s Website, a redesign of the profile and company pages and a retooling of their navigation bar. It’s great to see LinkedIn stepping up to the plate and bringing their users even more compelling reasons to use LinkedIn as a business tool.
What do you think of these new changes? Please tell me in the comments of this post.
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