In today’s workforce, having a LinkedIn profile is indispensable. The culmination of social media as an important source for news and entertainment has shifted even into job searching and recruiting.

According to an annual report by Jobvite, 87% of recruiters utilize LinkedIn to find potential job candidates. You should not only be on LinkedIn, you should have a full profile – complete with every honor you’ve received, every volunteer position you’ve held, and every skill on which you’ve been complimented.

To all this, you may groan.

“LinkedIn is so time consuming.”

“I’m happy in the job I have. Why would I dedicate time to LinkedIn if I’m not job searching?”

Yes, LinkedIn is time consuming. Yes, you may be happy where you are. Is that an excuse for having a blank profile? I’m afraid that is where you are wrong.

I’m going to pull an intelligent-sounding Ralph Waldo Emerson quote out of my hat to show you why. As he once said, “The world is all gates, all opportunities, strings of tension waiting to be struck.”

That word, opportunity, is what I want to point out. When it comes to LinkedIn, people associate that word with job searching. If you’re active on LinkedIn, you must either be a recruiter or looking to move on to the next job opportunity. But it’s so much more than this.

LinkedIn is the true embodiment of the “social network” title. It was built to create connections (literally) between professionals, share insights and accomplishments, and open the online arena for opportunity.

When you have a profile and you complete with every accomplishment of which you’re proud, every goal you’ve met, every skill you’ve learned – you are contributing to your chance at opportunity to network, meet new people, make new connections, gain insights, and learn about what you can accomplish.

So, don’t sequester your LinkedIn usage to job searching. Think of it as breaking those “strings of tension waiting to be struck.” Show people what you’ve done. Connect with other professionals that could teach you new things. Share your insights on topics of interest. Open those gates for yourself.

(You should listen to me – I got the job I have today largely because my LinkedIn profile. Just sayin’.)