How To Find Unemployed on LinkedIn

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Not everyone who has lost their job and is looking would openly put this information on their LinkedIn profile, but people many do. Here are some ways to search for LinkedIn members who have said that they are unemployed.

Searching for people with no present job is not possible with any LinkedIn account. We can try to find those people by X-Raying. Those members, who do have a current job, have the word present on the profiles; the current job dates look like this:  – Present (4 years 5 months). Here is the X-Ray string, that excludes employed people: OR -pub.dir -present <add keywords>

Searching this way, we’ll miss the profiles of people who are not working but have the word present in a different profile section. (If you were wondering, there are about two million profiles containing the keyword present; that is about 0.5% of all members). We’ll also miss public profiles, for which users have adjusted the settings not to show their jobs. But the majority of profiles with no present job will be visible to Google. Here’s an example search: OR -pub.dir -present recruiter sourcer “greater new york”

If we are searching for profiles in a different language, we would need to adjust the search accordingly; for example, X-Raying for profiles in Russia would look like this: OR -pub.dir -“настоящее время”

However, the majority of unemployed people are “employed” in LinkedIn’s “speak” (and do have the word present on public profiles): they choose to put the word unemployed or its variations either as their current company name or current title. (LinkedIn doesn’t offer an “unemployed” status. It does have a special type of account for people who are looking for work but it doesn’t have a search function to find them. Not very helpful…)

Due to those members’ entering an employer’s name that means they don’t have an employer, LinkedIn has lots of “companies” with the name including unemployed; there are other “companies” with names like “looking for a new opportunity”, etc.

So here are some searches for unemployed people on LinkedIn:

Of course, we can also search for “open to new opportunities” and the like in the keyword field.

Note that we won’t be able to search for company = “not currently employed” (or anything containing the word not, even if it’s NOT capitalized). We can’t search for phrases that include short words that LinkedIn search ignores. Similarly, we can’t search for company=”in transition”. Another “company” or job title to search for would be available, but be prepared to also see everyone who is “not available” in the results – there’s no way to exclude not.

If LinkedIn starts allowing to search for those who are looking for new opportunities – at least for those who are paying for the “job seeker” account – I’ll update the post!

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