|Photo - flickr - by gmajsicmtc|
With this in mind I discussed LinkedIn with my husband who has been on LinkedIn for a number of years, and asked his views on the value of LinkedIn, and it's potential use for the library world.
Plus points for him included-
-good for maintaining the network of work colleagues you have built up at various places of employment - a certain amount of proof for potential employers that you have actually worked where you say you have if you have them in you LinkedIn network.
-network can mean that the people you are networked with may, when a job vacancy comes up, both remember what your particular skills are and have a way of finding you again, or passing on the details to the potential employer of a way of contacting you.
-some job agencies keep a network set up of people who are interested in jobs, having it set-up to alert them to changes to your profile. This can be useful to them to keep up to date with your skills, and useful to the job-seekers who keep reminding the agencies of their presence!
Personally, I still feel a little wary of how much I want to display to how many, and I still need to consider in that case how useful the above points would be (my husband had much more of his profile visible when job-hunting - now much is private again). As for current awareness - I feel Twitter is much more user-friendly.
He did make an interesting point on the nature of Cambridge's libraries however... saying we seemed to have a very good active actual network of librarians. Many of us know each other personally and professionally, so in this kind of environment perhaps we have less need of a network such as LinkedIn... whereas in the generally more spread out world of work LinkedIn comes into its own (which is perhaps why my friend was so enthusiastic about it, working for a commercial rather than a library within the university). Perhaps he suggested it would be useful to link our close-knit network with one at Oxford?
I can now see some of its possible advantages as a career development tool, - as yet I am less sure of its use to the library itself. I can see this is a 'Thing' I need to explore some more, and perhaps visit again later in this blog!