How To Get LinkedIn All-Star Status as a High-Skilled and Underrepresented Candidate in 2023

This is how to get LinkedIn All-Star status to stand out as an underrepresented and high-skilled candidate. It can be broken down into 9 steps. If you work one step at a time (and watch the video to help you along), you’ll see how quickly your profile has improved. 


The benefits of a strong LinkedIn profile

There’s no doubt that having a strong LinkedIn profile and being active on the platform can be very helpful in landing a job or making a career move.    

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LinkedIn allows its users to build meaningful connections and their personal brand and offers a great starting point to build connections that could lead to informational interviews.

On top of this, LinkedIn offers the latest in career trends, advice and a job board.  This makes LinkedIn extremely useful and important to job seekers. 

What does LinkedIn All-Star status mean for BIPOC and new Canadians looking for a job?

LinkedIn All-Star status means having a fully complete profile.  Ideally your profile is also active and well put together.  This will significantly increase the chances of your discovery by various companies looking to hire people based on your skills and experience.

In fact, LinkedIn users with an All-Star profile are about 40 times more likely to be contacted by Recruiters and Hiring Managers.

A strong LinkedIn profile is an important part of meeting the expectations of employers in the Canadian job market.

And when it comes to personal brand, your LinkedIn profile provides an opportunity to showcase your skills and overcome any hiring objections before the interview. 

Overcoming possible objections can be particularly powerful for underrepresented professionals, international students and new Canadians who may face additional, unfair barriers in their job search.

How to get LinkedIn All-Star status in 9 steps (with helpful video tips)

Here is an overview of the 9 steps.

  1. Know what stage your LinkedIn profile is at.
  2. Add a professional profile picture.
  3. Write a compelling headline.
  4. Add your industry and location.
  5. Complete the experience section.
  6. Add at least 5 skills.
  7. Add your education.
  8. Write a compelling about section.
  9. Get 50 + connections. 

Reaching All-Star status with your profile may seem daunting at first. But breaking it down into smaller steps makes it more obtainable. Every change you make improves how you present yourself to prospective employers and connections. So you are winning even before you have completed everything!

This video also covers the steps to achieve LinkedIn All-Star status and may be helpful as you follow along the rest of this article.

Step 1:  know what stage your LinkedIn profile is at.

LinkedIn profiles have 5 stages of strength: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced, Expert, and All Star.  

When you’re building out your profile, LinkedIn will tell you how well you’re doing with their Profile Strength Meter.  You can find your Profile Strength Meter on your profile’s homepage under the section named ‘Dashboard’. 

This dashboard shows your level of profile completeness.

As an underrepresented professional, international student or new Canadian, All-Star status will be important to enhancing your credibility and overcoming possible objections. 

Note: At the time this article was written LinkedIn was implementing changes around the profile completeness scale. Some users were reporting a missing Dashboard. This was replaced with Analytics information. Here is the most recent update directly from LinkedIn.

Therefore, it is possible that your profile looks a little different. The stats and data around the importance of profile completeness stay the same.

Step 2:  add a professional profile picture.

Having a high-quality profile picture is important to getting All-Star status on your LinkedIn profile. Your picture is an important first impression for anyone who visits your LinkedIn profile. 

This impression can include evaluating your status and trustworthiness. After all, a picture says a thousand words.  As a result, it is important to show a professional image of yourself. 

When taking a profile picture for LinkedIn, it is important to have bright lighting, clearly shows your face and make sure the photo has a general positive energy to it.

LinkedIn users who include a photo receive 21X more profile views than users without one.  Profile views are important to enhance your credibility and visibility on the platform. 

While it is a best practice to omit a photo from a resume, it is necessary to include a photo on your LinkedIn profile.

Underrepresented job seekers, international students and newcomers may raise concerns of potential bias that is caused by showing their physical appearance.  This concern is valid and should not be ignored.  The practice of showing a photo at any point in the job search process is problematic in Canada. 

However, the profile picture on LinkedIn remains a best practice for a LinkedIn profile and necessary to achieve All-Star status.

Third-party sites like Photofeeler provide an opportunity for impartial feedback on your LinkedIn profile photo.  Here, you upload your profile photo and receive anonymous feedback from users on the site.

Example: LinkedIn profile picture
Example: LinkedIn profile picture

Step 3:  write a compelling headline for your LinkedIn profile.

The LinkedIn default headline is probably not going to serve you in your career goals.  The default headline will typically read ‘current employer + current job title’.  This may not helpful if you are looking to attract inbound opportunities, like messages from Recruiters or Hiring Managers. 

There is no magic formula when it comes to a ‘perfect’ headline. 

The goal for headline should be to appear in more searches, which are relevant and help you meet your professional goals. 

This means working backwards and setting a clear goal for LinkedIn, and then identifying who would be running any related searches.

A good practice is to reflect on the terms they will be searching.  Be sure to include those relevant terms in your headline.

Here’s an example: Human Resources Specialist | Recognized as Top 10 in my company | Helping Recruit and Retain Top Talent

Step 4: add your industry and location.

Adding your desired industry and location is probably one of the easiest ways to get closer to All-Star status.

When editing your LinkedIn profile, make sure to enter your postal code, city and your country.  These details should match the location where you would like to work. 

For example, if you are living in Alberta, Canada but looking for work in New Brunswick, Canada, you should list New Brunswick as your location.

Many Recruiters will search for job candidates on LinkedIn using the industry and location settings, so if you leave this blank, you’ll be left out of the results.  This is also the case if your location details do not reflect your targeted location.

Even when searching for remote candidates, Recruiters will often narrow this to a specific geographic area.  For example, they may need candidates in a specific time zone.

Step 5: Complete the experience section.

According to Forbes, LinkedIn members with current positions are discovered 16 times more in recruiter searches and their profile views increase up to 29 times. 

The bullet points here, just like on your resume, should be achievement-based and targeted towards your desired job or field. 

For the experience section, you will need to include your most current position plus two prior positions. 

Make sure to include your key accomplishments from those roles. You can describe this in bullet points, under the job title.

If you have a well-written resume, you can copy and paste some of the bullets you have already written.  Make sure to revise any copy paste errors as formatting might not look as nice on your profile.

Make sure to omit any irrelevant information from your LinkedIn profile, just like you would from your resume. 

For more on this, check out the post things NOT to say on a resume in Canada.

Step 6:  Add at least 5 skills to help achieve All-Star LinkedIn status.

All-Star status requires at least 5 skills in your skills section. LinkedIn reports that users with five skills or more are contacted up to 33 times more by recruiters

Adding skills to your LinkedIn profile may sound easy, but you want to be intentional about the skills you choose. Of course, you’ll want to include skills that you’re good at.

It is also important to add skills related to the keywords employers are using to find candidates. 

One way to find which keywords go with your role is simply by looking through 5-10 job postings on LinkedIn. When reviewing the job postings, you will start to notice words in common across postings.  Those reappearing skills are the ones you should include in your skills section.

Step 7:  add your education.

Make sure to complete the Education Section of your LinkedIn profile.  This section will allow you to connect with fellow school alumni. 

By adding your school information, LinkedIn will be able to recommend new connections, based on your school.  This makes it easy to add new connections, because you will have something in common.

The Education Section can also be very useful if you are a recent graduate or international student just starting to build your network.

Step 8:  write a compelling about section.

The About Section of your LinkedIn profile might be the most difficult to complete. 

It may take you some time and energy to craft a compelling About Section.  This section of your LinkedIn profile is your chance to market yourself to employers or clearly articulate any other LinkedIn goals you might have.

It is normal and likely that your about section will change over time.  For example, once you land a dream job your LinkedIn goal may change from seeking employment to building your personal brand.

When it comes to creating a strong LinkedIn About Section, consider including the following elements.

  • An opening statement
  • A summary of your most impressive skills
  • A few bullet points focused on your achievements
  • Explain why someone should get in touch with
  • Your contact information (email address and phone number)

Here is an example, using my LinkedIn profile.  In the About Section, I explain my purpose for being on the platform.

Step 9:  Get 50 + connections. 

To reach All-Star status on LinkedIn you will need at least 50 connections.

You can connect with others by sending them an invitation or by accepting their invitations. You can also jump start your connections by allowing LinkedIn to match you up with people from your email address book. 

Another way to start is simply by using the search feature to your previous employers and connecting with past colleagues.

Establishing connections and interacting is a core part of LinkedIn. As an underrepresented professional, international student or new Canadian, connections will also enhance your overall brand and credibility. 

Conclusion: LinkedIn All-Star status can help you get hired.

Achieving LinkedIn All-Star status can be an incredibly effective way for underrepresented professionals, international students and new Canadians to stand out in their job search and careers.

This is especially true as LinkedIn continues to report growth year over year.

At, we’ve seen the power of LinkedIn.  You never know who might see your profile or who you may impress with a post.  The person on the other end could be a Hiring Manager or a Recruiter.

Shauna Cole

Shauna Cole is the founder of She is a Human Resources Consultant and Instructor at the University of New Brunswick. She’s been featured by CBC, The Canadian HR Reporter, CareerBeacon, The Maritime Edit, Jobscan and more. She founded to connect underrepresented job seekers with employers who value diversity. Join her on LinkedIn or watch her videos on Youtube.