I believe that what makes LinkedIn special is the actual content. I would like to propose a more "content driven" LinkedIn where users feel that it's more engaging and relevant towards their own interests. Business sites do not need to be "stale", and it could be a layout that is both professional and attractive.
LinkedIn's branding colors are very similar to Facebook and Twitter, using mostly pleasing blues and oasis lagoon shades. Blue is very traditionally used with tech companies, as it presents a very calming and pleasing effect. I've noticed that LinkedIn also uses a lot of light and dark colors with few points in highlight yellow. I want to keep their branding the same, but explore it a bit more. I incorporated more yellow into the page, because it can be the color to really make LinkedIn stand apart from both Facebook and Twitter.
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I decided to go with a more "gridlike" style, because the "in" symbol in LinkedIn is encased in a rounded square. It represent a more natural progression. Also, this page is full screen from top to bottom with different animations loading for the quotes and photos of influencers. The data on the right side should be live and active.
Let's start from the Top
I was inspired by the ease of Facebook Graph Search—why not implement something very similar here on LinkedIn? Users should be able to search for a colleague, influencer, company or simply by skillset. If I want to see all the "designers" in NYC, I should be able to search that very easily.
I've boiled down 4 main objectives for the main page: ACTIVITY, DISCOVER, PROFILE, and JOBS. Activity is basically what you see here on the top – a personalized grid-based, responsive content viewer. I should be able to see relevant content and sort very easily between Popular Industry News to Featured Influencer to Follow. Each "widget" should be easily removed if you decide it's not relevant to you.
I've placed the "status update" and friends updates below the fold, because I believe that people don't come to LinkedIn to update their friends on the best dinner they ever had last night or to announce their recent enagement. Strictly more professional, business oriented, quality shares of content, articles, or insights.
With larger images and a smaller focus on your friend's comments and posts, it allows users to spend more time on the actual content and not the distractions. The upper right corner of the posts show number of comments, likes, and shares. Of course, any widget item could be deleted or hidden. This will help the clutter and sorting of your daily news.
Here I am showing an example of how it would look with a bit less "in-your-face" content. It should probably scroll to the right when you mouse over to get more news. This is also more traditional, because it brings the "status update" bar above the fold, making it easier to share throughout your network.
Upon clicking any content, I want to bring a better reading experience for all the articles. Something that is clean, easy to read, and enjoyable.
Lastly, I want to present one concept for the profile page. I want to mix the traditional resume look with a more content driven, modern feel. I want to allow bigger images that can ultimately showcase your work, projects, or anything you want for that particular job you had. Instead of the stale bullet points in resume building, I suggest illustrating such points in more of a storytelling format. Some jobs cannot be simplified into bullet points, and it would be more engaging for users to read a good review on your experience versus listing the typical points to sell your worth.
Along with that point, I think it's would be a nice feature to include "Ask a Question", where a potential candidate could ask for advice. They should also be able to see if they've written any blog posts/articles in the past regarding their experience. I think some examples of great insights could be the range of salary offered, the interview process and how the company operates.
I think this could be an excellent selling point for people to log into LinkedIn and check out their content on a daily or weekly basis.
Let's talk about endorsements
I don't know why they're so buried on the bottom of your profile. I think the skillset list is one of the most important points related to job search. It should be above the fold and close to the top for everyone to see. I also believe that each section of the page should be "widget-ed" and customized to display anything you want. There should also be templates that you can revert back to, if you wish.
I would like people to envision their LinkedIn Profile as a location for their own self-branding and professional page for their careers. There are so many more options to explore, but sadly I have ran out of time.
Here's the final side-by-side comparison.
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