5 major LinkedIn changes you should know about

Keeping with current trends, the professional network put more emphasis on visuals and mobile. Here’s how the changes affect you.

LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional network with 175 million users worldwide, has made some major design changes.

LinkedIn has been working on the design of its network for some time now, starting with the major change on the home page earlier this year. Here are the five major design changes LinkedIn has made this year:

1. Visually appealing home page

In July 2012, LinkedIn changed its home page. I reviewed the major design change here.

The change was much needed. Visuals play a prominent role, as is the trend these days. LinkedIn also made some design tweaks to the old LinkedIn Today to match the new design.

2. Cleaner company and career pages

LinkedIn company pages, which offer a branded space for your business, also went through design changes. The changes are in sync with the rest of the network’s design.

LinkedIn, which has yet to roll out the change for everyone, executed it for companies like Philips, Citi, Dell and HP. The change has a more visual appeal. LinkedIn focused on visuals everywhere, whether it be a company page or a personal profile.

With the new change, the update stream has become more relevant. This will allow companies to target their content better. Additionally, the new change is clean and provides an easy navigation experience. This will allow companies to list their products or services in a much more accessible way. This is another design change that was expected.

3. Real-time notifications

LinkedIn recently made another tweak that it has yet to roll out to everyone. The new notifications feature is a real-time feature that will update you when someone likes you, shares your content, accepts your invitation, etc. You’ll see a notification flag at the top of the home page, as well as a new inbox envelope icon.

LinkedIn will also roll out the notifications feature on mobile and other hand-held devices to provide real-time information everywhere. LinkedIn doesn’t want us to check the network twice a day, but rather most of the day, the way most of us use Facebook.

4. Enhanced skills and expertise

As a professional network, LinkedIn focuses on your skills and expertise so others are aware of them. Before, you could associate skills and expertise to your profile and rate them. With the latest change, LinkedIn allows your connections to rate the skills listed on your profile.

It’s great that your connections can rate your skills. It is a great way to add credibility to your expertise, but it shouldn’t turn into spam.

5. Mobile apps synced with Web

LinkedIn also made sure to focus on mobile. In April 2012, LinkedIn came up with an exciting iPad app. Later, LinkedIn introduced a Windows app that also got handsome reviews.

According to the LinkedIn blog, LinkedIn updated all devices with the new features to provide a seamless experience. The iPhone and Droid devices now have real-time notifications, updated company pages, and job listings users may be interested in.

In addition to all these changes, LinkedIn on the iPad speaks six languages since 60 percent of users are based out of the United States. The languages are French, German, Italian, Spanish, Brazilian, Portuguese and Korean.

It’s great to see the company investing time on mobile devices, since 23 percent of members now visit LinkedIn via the mobile app. And there is more good news for mobile users: You will soon be able to edit your LinkedIn profile from your mobile device.

These design changes were overdue, and with time, will definitely increase users’ activity. I am impressed by the way LinkedIn thought about the design changes and implemented them.

Will you spend more time on LinkedIn, or do you still prefer to use LinkedIn as a recruitment network rather than a professional one?

Prasant Naidu is founder and blogger at Lighthouse Insights, where a version of this article originally appeared. (Image via)

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