LinkedIn has announced that users can now include a “Volunteer Experience & Causes” field on their profile. This will let them highlight their unpaid or charitable work experience and the good causes and organizations they support.
They can fill in details about volunteer positions, tick the causes they care about (Animal Welfare, Children, Human Rights, etc) and list groups such as DonorsChoose, Oxfam International, the American Red Cross and Teach for America to their LinkedIn profile. Here’s an example of what it looks like:
To show the importance of volunteer experience, LinkedIn listed the results of a recent survey it conducted. It found that 41% of professionals consider volunteer work equally as valuable as paid work experience when evaluating candidates, and 20% of the hiring managers surveyed agree they have made a hiring decision based on a candidate’s volunteer work experience. LinkedIn’s connection director, Nicole Williams, said:
Given the current economic climate and the hypercompetitive job market, it’s essential to include your volunteer work on your profile. Even if you’re currently unemployed, you can still actively volunteer and begin to accrue new skill sets. When hiring managers or business partners are comparing two people side by side, volunteer experience makes you a more multifaceted professional and can set you apart from the competition.