LinkedIn announced Wednesday that they are adding a new “Volunteer Experiences & Causes” field to their profiles. This will allow users to showcase their charitable and unpaid work experience. In this section, users will indicate causes that mean the most to them, complete a volunteer experience profile, and specify specific organizations that they support.
The results of a recent survey by LinkedIn indicate that promoting your charitable work experiences can help you to get a job. In fact, 41% of the 2000 professionals surveyed reported that they considered volunteer work when evaluating candidates, and 20% said that they had given someone a job because of the volunteer work they had done. According to helpguide.org, volunteering can help you gain experience in your field of interest and meet people in the field. Volunteering gives you the opportunity to practice important skills used in the workplace, such as teamwork, communication, problem solving, project planning, task management, and organization. Having the opportunity to practice these skills in advance allows you to walk into a job confident about your ability to demonstrate these skills. Of the 2000 professionals surveyed in the LinkedIn survey, 89% reported having volunteer experience, but only 45% included this experience on their resume. Promoting volunteer experience is necessary to being recognized for your efforts and receiving credit for the skills and experience you possess.