career-advice

How to Keep Your LinkedIn Job Search Confidential [LinkedIn Series]

Matt Glodz
How to Keep Your LinkedIn Job Search Confidential [LinkedIn Series]

We explain how keep your employer from seeing your LinkedIn #OpenToWork settings

If you're using LinkedIn to search for a new role while you are still working, you'll naturally want to keep your efforts hidden from your current employer.

You can let recruiters know that you are open to new opportunities while keeping your job search discreet in the following two ways:

Method 1: Adjust Your Privacy Settings

You can let recruiters know you are open to new opportunities by adjusting your privacy settings.

To do so, click on Me next to your photo in the top ribbon and select Settings & Privacy, as shown below.

LinkedIn Job Search Privacy Settings

On the privacy tab, select job seeking preferences.

LinkedIn Job Seeking Preferences Privacy

Toggle the button under let recruiters know you're open to opportunities to yes, and you're all set!

LinkedIn-Privacy-Settings

Method 2: Enable the #OpenToWork Work Feature

The second way to let recruiters you are open to new opportunities and provide them with specific details regarding the types of opportunities you would consider is located right on your home page.

To enable it, simply click Add profile section and select Intro.

Looking For A Job LinkedIn

You'll then see the edit job preferences options shown below.

When looking for potential candidates, recruiters typically filter by both location and job title.

To maximise your chances of appearing in their searches, be sure to fill this section out with as much detail as possible.

Most importantly, make sure to select share with recruiters only under the choose who sees you're open tab as shown below if you want to keep your search private.

Otherwise, all of your connections will be able to see that you are looking for a new role, and LinkedIn will automatically add a banner to your profile picture.

Edit Job Preferences LinkedIn

If you don't make your #OpenToWork preferences visible to all LinkedIn members, LinkedIn will only share your information with relevant recruiters.

What information can recruiters see on LinkedIn?

According to LinkedIn, the information recruiters will be able to see includes:

  • The fact that you are open to hearing about new opportunities
  • The job titles or roles you're interested in
  • Whether you're open to full-time or contract opportunities
  • The date you flagged yourself as open to new opportunities

How can I ensure my colleagues won't see that I'm open to new opportunities?

To help keep your information hidden from colleagues, make sure that each of your work experiences on LinkedIn is associated with the official company page.

In other words, if you work for a large organisation, you should be able to see the company's logo alongside your position name and description.

Recruiters also affiliated with that company would then not be able to see your preferences.

Is the LinkedIn #OpenToWork setting 100% confidential?

Bear in mind that although LinkedIn makes an effort to keep your job search discreet, it does mention that privacy is not absolutely guaranteed:

To protect your privacy, we take steps to prevent LinkedIn Recruiter users who work at your company and related companies from seeing your shared career interests, but we can’t guarantee complete privacy.

In Summary

By taking the steps above, you'll be able to leverage LinkedIn to search for jobs without your employer's knowledge.

If you are especially worried about discretion, consider also removing your profile from search engine results.

However, don't forget to write a strong LinkedIn headline and summary section for those who do get to see your profile.

To learn more about LinkedIn best practices, check out our LinkedIn Series here! You'll find links to a variety of brief, punchy articles that will help you get the most out of the platform.

If you need help writing and optimising your LinkedIn profile, email us at team@cvpilots.co.uk or call us on +44 (0)207 043 2684 to learn how we can help.


About the AuthorMatt Glodz


Matt Glodz is the Founder and Managing Partner of CV Pilots and a Certified Professional Resume Writer.

Based in London, he currently works with applicants ranging from CEOs to recent graduates and has been writing CVs for over eight years.

At CV Pilots, Matt combines his solid business and writing background to craft CVs that give his clients the best chance of landing interviews. He has lived in the UK, US and Italy.

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