Last March, I was approached by LinkedIn to participate in a pilot they were conducting for a new service, Profinder. I hadn't heard any word about this, but accepted their invitation to an informational webinar offered to invited potential participants. What I learned was interesting and raised my interest in this new tool.
Profinder was in its infancy and being tested in several markets around the country, with a late Summer launch expected in Seattle. The goal of Profinder is to create an online resource of vetted professionals in their chosen field. At the present time, there are 17 fields to chose from from home improvement to financial services to coaching. With just a few simple steps, you can submit an RFP request to vetted professionals in the particular field you are seeking assistance in.
During the pilot, I received a few submissions to review. While none of those that came my way were in my wheelhouse, it was encouraging to see that people were using the service. Now that the service is live in Seattle, I continue to get solicitations. As yet, none has matched my particular service offerings, but I continue to eagerly await each request and am confident some will eventually be a match as the service is more widely used.
A recent Forbes article interview Reid Hoffman, one of the backers of the new service. The article describes Profinder as "an online marketplace for matching LinkedIn users to skilled "white-collar" professionals. With freelancing on the rise, this is a great way for entrepreneurs to stay connected and discover new clients. As someone who refuses to use the "connect and solicit" approach that many people misuse LinkedIn for, I'm thrilled to see a vetted, secure means of connecting users with potential vendors. Congrats to LinkedIn for continuing to innovate!
Andrea made the choice to leave the corporate world in May 2013 to pursue her dreams.