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How to develop your personal profile and build your brand

Social media has become a key driver of employment opportunities.

Companies, recruiters and HR professionals are consistently using platforms liked LinkedIn to find, secure and build their teams.

That is why it is important to create a ‘personal brand’ when leaving the ADF to help show potential employers and those in aligned industries what your strengths are, insight into your personality, and how you can help them succeed.

Developing your professional profile and brand

Social media platforms such as LinkedIn can be a great resource to gather open market intelligence on organisations or departments you would like to work for and give you the opportunity to connect with professionals doing the job you are interested in and understanding the employment progression pathway.

LinkedIn Statistics

  • 75% of people who recently changed jobs used LinkedIn to inform their career decision.

  • The #1 reason people change jobs is career opportunity.

  • The most important factors in accepting a new role are compensation 49%, professional development 33% and better work/life balance 29%.

  • LinkedIn now has almost 740 million members with over 55 million registered organisations.

In the civilian world, employers place a large emphasis on academic accreditations, certificates, degrees and qualifications. To increases your chances of success, it is strongly recommended that you commence any training or courses you need for your desired role prior to discharging (See Article Part 5 - Selecting the right RTO and avoiding buyer's remorse). This will enable you to be fit for purpose and job ready by the time you discharge from the ADF. By starting your qualifications while in uniform you are showing potential employers that you are taking tangible steps to reach your civilian goal.

The WPA program aims to assist transitioning veterans by working with you to identify suitable employment opportunities and use our training partners to help facilitate the courses and qualifications you need.

Industry networking

Once you have identified the types of tasks you enjoy doing (See Article Part 4 - How to prepare for civilian employment) and have a rough idea of the kinds of jobs you are interested in, it is important that you join some associations, networks or clubs associated with that job. By doing this, you will not only gain valuable industry contacts but get a better understanding of whether you are really interested in that type of work. These associations and networks will also keep you up to date with the current events impacting to your chosen employment field.

Social media screening

The increased use of social media gives you the perfect platform to build a strong personal brand, that is, tell people what you are doing and what you stand for. However, it has also given employers the opportunity to gain valuable insights into whether you will fit their organisation’s culture. Your posts, specifically images can have serious repercussions for your civilian career.

Generally speaking, employers will screen your LinkedIn to verify the content of your CV and work experience, while checking Facebook and Twitter to get a sense of who you are as a person. It is also important to have some social media presence as being completely absent from all platforms can make it appear that you have something to hide.

Social media use

Below you will find tips to aid you in developing your social media profiles, by using this framework you will build a strong, engaging profile that will be attractive in the job market.

What to avoid on Social Media

  • Posting or resharing political content

  • Posting anything related to excessive drinking or drug use

  • Posting about your security clearance or sensitive information

  • Commenting on race, gender or religious issues

  • Having inconsistent information about your qualifications

  • Bad mouthing previous employers or colleagues

  • Posting too frequently

What to do on Social Media

  • Highlight your strengths, by posting activities which display them

  • Post about your achievements or impressive things you have done

  • Show your interest in a specific industry aligned to the jobs you are targeting

  • Share industry related news online

  • Join social media groups aligned to the industry you want to work in

  • Present yourself as proactive and involved

Social media is an important tool for ‘marketing’ yourself to potential employers. We recommend a common-sense approach to what you include on your profile and what you post – think about how this content will portray you to someone who doesn’t know you well, or at all!

Need help creating your profile and building your online personal brand? Contact us to learn more:

Visit the WorkPath Australia Employment Program website to learn more about transitioning into your post-service career.​

Vertical Scope Group are proud to have partnered with Transformed, Australia’s leading Registered Training Organisation to help veterans seamlessly transition from the military. Transformed specialise in delivering nationally recognised, world-class training and offer veterans tailored study plans so that they can professionally upskill while still in uniform.
To learn more about how they can help you plan your civilian career please visit their website:

Previous articles in this series

Missed an earlier article? You can catch up on our series below...

Part 1 - Veteran Transition - Planning your Transition
Part 2 - How do I transition from the ADF? Planning your personal life!
Part 3 - What skills will matter going into 2022 for employment and what will the employment landscape look like?
Part 4 - How to prepare for civilian employment
Part 5 - Selecting the right RTO and avoiding buyer's remorse
Part 6 - Types of employment and questions to consider for veterans