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Want a new job? You can now say so on your LinkedIn profile.

LinkedIn promises your boss won’t find out.

Actor Stephen Root as Milton, a character in the movie Office Space who loves his red stapler. Twentieth Century Fox

LinkedIn is a good place to find a new job. It’s not a good place to alert others — namely recruiters and hiring managers — that you’re trying to find a new job.

LinkedIn wants to change that. On Thursday, it announced a new feature called Open Candidates, which lets users indicate they’re open to new job opportunities. Users can also add details about the types of jobs they’re interested in, and in which cities.

If you already have a job, the idea of alerting people online that you’re open to a new one sounds like a bad idea. What if your boss finds out? But LinkedIn says this isn’t a problem. The info is only visible to recruiters that work at other companies and pay LinkedIn’s $9,000 annual fee for the premium recruiter service.

The hope is that letting people add this signal to their profiles will increase the number of job openings they see and help recruiters better identify people who are actually open to new opportunities versus simply guessing.

“The big challenge job seekers have today is that their profiles are an indication in general of where they are now, not necessarily where they want to go,” said Eddie Vivas, head of product for LinkedIn’s talent solutions business. “The ability to signal those things is big.”

LinkedIn announced the new product at its annual Talent Connect conference, held this year in Vegas. (At last year’s event, in LA, the company showed off its redesigned mobile app.) It also announced redesigned Career Pages, or LinkedIn-hosted versions of a company’s website, complete with job listings and corporate videos.

LinkedIn has been beta testing Open Candidates for months and says one million people have already used the product. It will roll out to all recruiters on the site beginning Thursday and will make its way to users over time.


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