LinkedIn Are Experimenting With a Mentor System on Their New App

LinkedIn
Right now, somewhere deep in the annals of LinkedIn's offices, a new version of the app is being developed. Various new features are currently undergoing internal testing, but one in particular stands out - a kind of 'mentor matching' feature which will enable users to list the kinds of things they want advice about and then get connected to industry professionals willing to give advice in those areas. For people just starting out in their careers, or changing careers, this could be extremely useful.

It's good for the mentors as well, as they can filter through potential candidates based on how much experience they have, what university they went to and where they're based. In this sense, it wouldn't be too difficult to set up a network of local area/graduate mentors to help young people get a vital leg up in particularly difficult lines of work. People will need to commit for it to work, of course, but it has a lot of promise.

This feature will be directly linked to LinkedIn's ProFinder service, which is largely designed to connect users to freelancers. More broadly though, this will be a good way for job-hunters to better navigate the often daunting career landscape, especially if they're entering into a competitive industry, a job market in a big city, or both. Even more enticing is the fact that, unlike most career advice, this doesn't cost any money.

That's something of a double edged sword though. Without any financial incentive to offer, it's somewhat hard to figure out what LinkedIn are planning to do to encourage mentors to get involved, perhaps they're hoping that professionals will want to help other people purely out of the goodness of their own hearts, or perhaps they were already trying to advise new starters, but didn't have the right platform for it.

Hopefully it works as well as LinkedIn are hoping. LinkedIn has always been a deep well of untapped potential, but recently more and more has been brought to bear. Making connections in job-hunting extends far beyond simply linking employees to employers, and this is a great example of the versatility LinkedIn's structure offers.

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