The indirect benefits for Perl on LinkedIn

In response to one of my posts about the Advanced Perl Users Group, @belden asked me how I find LinkedIn useful:


A better LinkedIn makes the world a slightly better place for me. Our ill-defined, disparate, and disperse community has many parts that can be improved and I spend a couple of minutes each morning moderating some LinkedIn stuff. Other people help out in other sites. There are a couple of things that I'd like to encourage.

I want to recruiters to see that CPAN Developer's Group badge and ask candidates why they don't have it. Even if that means the person only ever uploaded one module, that means they've gone through the process once, which I think is the biggest obstacle to sharing. Once they get over that hump, even if just to get the badge, they are a slightly better Perler. And, it's all about a long journey where each step makes them slightly better. If they are hiring better Perlers, I'm dealing with better Perlers when I show up.

I want to put it in the mind of Perlers that they can make a better labor market for themselves, now or later, by showing recruiters that there are many people who are part of the Perl world. Even if most of the Perlers aren't looking for situations, a situation might find them. There's very little that someone can do to verify what happened tat some job otehr than asking a someone else they don't know (and anyone can find three good references). However, there are thousands of people who can testify to someone's CPAN activity, module usefulness, and so on.

Even people not looking for a situation affect the job market by the skills and associations they present. Recruiters have wonderful tools to find people now. They aren't limited to the self-selected set of submitted résumés or the word of mouth of the small group of people they know. They see information for people who aren't looking for jobs. They see patterns in profiles, and each profile slightly changes their view. The way I present myself makes another person think a little bit differently about what they expect from other Perlers in the same way that the way you present yourself affects how people may think about me.

Marketers might call all of this "brand maintenance". It's just unorganized and volunteer driven, just like some other stuff we like. I don't have to do it all. I just have to do a little and trust that other people will do a little somewhere else.


I've been surprised by Perl people telling me that LinkedIn isn't very useful. I am routinely contacted about offers through LinkedIn. Recruiters heavily use LinkedIn to find candidates, particularly to find "passive" candidates who aren't actively looking or are afraid to reach out. Most Fortune 500 companies have a presence on LinkedIn.

The groups are also helpful. While I know that LinkedIn has done some work to combat keyword stuffing on profiles, if you've joined several Perl groups, you're more likely to show up in a Perl search than someone who hasn't joined those groups. And participating in those groups exposes you to people who never would have otherwise seen your profile.

So thanks for working to promote those groups. It helps everyone!

Everything we can do thats as trivial as adding yourself to a linkedin group, there's really no reason not to do it.

I have a recruiters FAQ project over here ( that could use a home and comments, for people interesting in doing thinks like using linkedin to help education recruiters.


Excellent article. The only reason I hadn't joined the CPAN group is that I didn't know it existed: problem solved. :-) I just took a few moments to update my profile appropriately. Good tips.

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About brian d foy

user-pic I'm the author of Mastering Perl, and the co-author of Learning Perl (6th Edition), Intermediate Perl, Programming Perl (4th Edition) and Effective Perl Programming (2nd Edition).