LinkedIn is a large, public network that strives to bring all the professionals in the world together.  Essentially LinkedIn is a business-oriented social media, however with much more of a purpose than Twitter per say.  The company was created by a man name Reid Hoffman, and was launched on May 5th, 2003.  Hoffman is now chairman of the board for the company, with a man named Jeff Weiner as acting CEO.  As of June 2013, LinkedIn had acquired over 259 million users in over 200 countries.  The companies servers are located in California, and support about 5,000 to 10,000 employees.  In January of 2014, LinkedIn measured countries based on their amount of users.  The United States of course, came in first with 93 million, a strong 29.9%.  Interestingly, India came in second, with 24 million users.  The country of Brazil finished third, with 16 million users.

LinkedIn has many different aspects that can be helpful in the business world.  All the websites opportunities are based on a person’s contact network.  Users can find jobs, people and business offers, through the recommendations built-into the server.  Employers can list jobs and search for potential candidates as well.  Individuals seeking jobs can review the profile of hiring managers and discover which of their existing contacts can introduce them.  Users can post their own photos to aid in identification, and can also follow different companies and receive notifications about the new joining and offers available.  Users can “save” jobs that they would like to apply for, in addition they can also “like” and “congratulate” each other’s updates and new employments.  Users can see who has visited their profile page as well.

LinkedIn also supports the formation of interest groups, and as of March 29, 2012 there are 1,248,019 such groups whose membership varies from 1 to 744,662.  The majority of the largest groups are employment related, although a very wide range of topics are covered mainly around professional and career issues, and there are currently 128,000 groups for both academic and corporate alumni.  Groups support a limited form of discussion area, moderated by the group owners and managers.  Groups also keep their members informed through emails with updates to the group, including most talked about discussions within your professional circles.

In retrospect, it is obvious that LinkedIn is a phenomenal company.  The sheer amount of different business aspects that are helpful for professionals in the workplace is staggering.  There is the opportunity to search and reconnect with colleagues and classmates.  Learn about other companies.  Leverage powerful tools to find and reach the people you need.  Tap into the knowledge of your network.  Discover new opportunities.