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Secret LinkedIn Filters for Corporate Recruiting Teams

Secret LinkedIn Filters

Disappearing LinkedIn Filters

It is not easy to find the people you want on LinkedIn. That is by design. As LinkedIn has monetized its offering, users have seen incredibly useful search filters disappear from view. Due to that limitation, members resort to entering random keywords into the search box, only to discover that they are applied across all the text in a LinkedIn profile. The imprecise search results seem to take forever to sift through.


Turns out, LinkedIn intentionally makes it hard to filter its search results without upgrading to more expensive, premium subscriptions. They do it to drive revenues. As a recruiting research practice, we’ve done what most dedicated sourcers do to work around LinkedIn limitations.

For example, when LinkedIn returns little-to-no results when we are logged into our premium seats, we check Google search results. Frequently, what LinkedIn has removed from sight without a higher-level license Google reveals — quite simply because the profile they are hiding is a public profile.

LinkedIn Offices Secret LinkedIn Filters
LinkedIn Headquarters Sunnyvale. Photo Credit: LPS.1, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Secret LinkedIn Filters Exist

LinkedIn explains that the Search bar is at the top of any LinkedIn page you’re viewing. It allows you to search for people, jobs, companies, posts, and more. You can click any suggestions that appear in the dropdown list as you type or submit your search to see the full results. Those are the filters you can see. But those aren’t the only ones. There are invisible filters that LinkedIn keeps from view. But just because you can’t see certain LinkedIn filters, doesn’t mean that they’re not there. Better yet, you can use these filters for executive search and candidate sourcing.

LinkedIn Filter Hack

When LinkedIn returns too many search results. You simply use secret LinkedIn filters.  All you need to do is learn what the hidden search operators are.

Secret LinkedIn Filters

Hidden LinkedIn Filters

Consummate sourcing archeologist Irwina Shamaeva has been digging into LinkedIn and has unearthed Secret LinkedIn Search operators. The operators do what the drop-down filters would do if they were there to use. She has served them up to the sourcing community in her recruiting industry blog Boolean Strings. You can search LinkedIn using the following 10  search operators that you can now use with a free or premium account:

  1. headline:
  2. skills:
  3. industry:
  4. seniority:
  5. spokenlanguage:
  6. profilelanguage:
  7. yoe:
  8. startyear:
  9. endyear:
  10. geo:

To learn how the operator works, check out Irina Shamaeva’s three posts: Two Undocumented LinkedIn Search OperatorsThree More Operators!, and Adventure Continues (Five New Undocumented Operators). If, as we did, you like what you read, you order her eBook “Sourcing Hacks”, covering hacks for searching any industry.

If you are grappling with a challenging executive search and want to avoid hitting the wall, check out our blog post: Why Headhunters Fail.

We invite you to check out our most popular blog post UPDATED! What Your LinkedIn Member Number Means (and How to Find It). We welcome your comments. Perhaps you can help us solve the Mystery of the LinkedIn Member Number uncovered by one of the commenters.

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