Thursday, August 02, 2012

Security Resume and LinkedIn Profile Question from a LinkedIn Connection

The Independent Information Secuity Consultant's Question

After reading a couple of your articles again this morning, a light bulb went off in my head. I began to think, "Is my resume / LinkedIn page reflecting quantifiable data and the right value I may have added?" My answer, not so much, it could be better. So, I am in an all-out blitz in an effort to revamp both.
In your opinion, how much detail would you recommend putting on the LinkedIn page for a professional?  Short and concise bullets or one that provides a little Macro and Micro substance?
I see many that are short and do not say much; then there are others that hurt my eyes!
Thanks Jeff!

The person who talked me into creating a blog in the first place suggested that if I just kept a record of the questions that I’m regularly asked and then answered the questions in a blog, I’d have plenty of blog content.  I didn’t know any better so I took that person’s suggestion for a ride.  At this point several years later, I’ve come up with things to write more than 650 times so I guess the person who gave me advice was at least partially right.
By way of my Security Resume Writing service, I work with security professionals who want a resume that places them a cut above.  A resume in my opinion needs to pass a technology test, a 10-15 second human eyeball scan and a content test.  Finding the right balance between buzzwords, text, order of information, length of resume, etc. is an art rather than a science.

As an art, there are many ways the end product could look and they’re all potentially right.  If resume writing was a science, there would be one formula that would lead to one correct answer all the time.
After choosing a resume format, the most important choice in my opinion for resume building is how you’ll build your content.  A resume built with short choppy bullet statements loaded with keyword after keyword typically sends a message that the resume belongs to an engineer.  If this is the message you want to deliver, go for it.

Alternatively, companies that come to me for recruiting help are more often than not struggling to find security professionals who understand how to build security and risk management solutions that align with the needs of the business.  Demonstrating one’s ability to work at this level on a resume is very challenging but entirely possible.  That is what the Security Resume Writing methodology I’ve created achieves.
By the way, here are some recent comments from my security resume writing clients so you know that what I'm talking about is the real deal.
A Few Recent Security Resume Writing Testimonials
I'd like to thank you for helping me craft a superior resume. I have one job offer imminent and more interest from other employers. I am a very satisfied customer and can't thank you enough for the help you've given me.  Information Security Engineer
Jeff's rewrite of my resume more than doubled inquiries overnight. And it increased my targeted job submission responses from less than 10% to almost 50%! Identity and Access Manager Security Architect
One more great thing I'm sure you will love to hear. I met with guys yesterday exploring a security position. They told me my resume got their attention because it was focused, gives details without being very verbose like other resumes they see. As you said, the new resume stood up against other resume and won.  So thank you very much again :)  Sr. Security Engineer
Building a LinkedIn Profile
I know you asked about LinkedIn so let’s go there.  I don’t think an individual’s entire resume needs to be on LinkedIn but for my security resume writing clients, once they’ve gone through the exercise of creating resume content that demonstrates quantifiable, measurable value, using some of that data to populate the fields of a LinkedIn profile just makes sense.

I once read an article that suggested you shouldn't treat LinkedIn as an on-line resume.  I don't share that point of view. 

As a recruiter, when I look at a LinkedIn profile that says next to nothing, I can do little to determine if the owner of the profile is at the top, middle or bottom of the Bell Curve.  I’m hired to find security professionals who function at the top of the Bell Curve.
If one of your objectives for using LinkedIn is to be found.  Invest the time to build a profile that someone will want to find.
If you want to be found by recruiters and/or you’re an independent security consultant as the person who asked today’s question is, you need to build a LinkedIn profile that conveys the message you would want to convey if you were sitting in front of an interviewer.  Again, I think this discussion is about art rather than science but let me leave you with a few thoughts.

Build a LinkedIn profile that has an appropriate number of buzz words so the reader of your profile can figure out what your subject matter expertise is.  If you’re a business-savvy security professional, demonstrate your blend of business and security accomplishments by offering LinkedIn content that gives both technical and business quantifiable value where you’re able.
Know that in many ways, you’ll be judged by those who visit your LinkedIn profile by the quality of information you choose to use on LinkedIn to speak as your electronic calling card.  Whether you want your LinkedIn profile to form a first impression in someone's mind or not, it often does.

Jeff's Opinion

You asked for my opinion so I gave you a few opinions.  If I knew what your objectives were for creating a profile on LinkedIn, I might have given slightly different opinions. 
I don’t think every LinkedIn profile should look like my profile or your profile.  I do believe that those who think about why they’re using LinkedIn and those who form a strategy around LinkedIn will have more success with the networking platform than those who build a profile and never come back again.  In fact, I’m 100% sure that a strategy will lead to success!'s Security Recruiter Blog