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LinkedIn Easy Apply: don’t do it – unless you do this

Mark Daniel //  0 Comments

Applying for jobs is hard work so what’s not to like about LinkedIn Easy Apply? Well, the clue is in the name – easy. Stop and consider this.


Think for a moment about the word easy.

What comes to mind?

Easy assemble. Oh yes, the joy of flat pack furniture.  Never as simple as promised.

Easy money. What a myth. There’s always a high price to pay in terms of effort, time, or sacrifice.

And LinkedIn Easy Apply. Simple, quick, but pointless – if you don’t use it the right way.

Let’s dive in.

What’s the difference between LinkedIn Easy Apply and LinkedIn Apply?

LinkedIn multiple images

LinkedIn Easy Apply and LinkedIn Apply are two different ways to apply for jobs on the LinkedIn platform.

Here are the key differences between the two:

Ease of Application

LinkedIn Easy Apply: As the name suggests, it is designed for quick and convenient job applications. Users can apply for a job with just a few clicks, without the need to submit a separate resume or cover letter. This simplifies the application process, making it faster and more straightforward.

LinkedIn Apply: LinkedIn Apply is a more traditional job application process. Users are required to upload a resume, write a cover letter, and complete application forms. This method allows for more personalised and detailed applications.

LinkedIn Profile Usage

LinkedIn Easy Apply: With Easy Apply, you use your LinkedIn profile as a virtual resume. It may pre-fill some information from your profile, and you might have the option to attach your resume if desired.

LinkedIn Apply: In a standard LinkedIn Apply process, you are typically required to upload a resume and may need to manually enter additional information not already on your profile.


LinkedIn Easy Apply: Offers no customisation. It's a one-click or few-click process, but you may have the opportunity to include a personalised resume depending on the particular employer or recruiter.

LinkedIn Apply: Provides flexibility for customisation. You can write a unique cover letter, tailor your resume to the job description, and provide additional information relevant to the specific job.

Quality Control

LinkedIn Easy Apply: Easy Apply applications may have fewer qualifications or screening steps, potentially leading to a higher volume of applicants, including those who may not meet all the requirements.

LinkedIn Apply: Traditional applications typically involve more stringent qualifications and screening processes, helping employers filter out less-qualified candidates.

Employer Preferences

LinkedIn Easy Apply: Some employers and job listings may prefer Easy Apply to attract a wider pool of applicants quickly.

LinkedIn Apply: Other employers may prefer traditional applications as they provide more detailed information and a better sense of an applicant's commitment and effort.

In summary, the primary difference between LinkedIn Easy Apply and LinkedIn Apply is the level of convenience and customisation.

LinkedIn Easy Apply is a faster and more streamlined process, while LinkedIn Apply offers greater customisation and a more traditional application experience.

The choice between the two depends on the specific job, the preferences of the employer, and the extent to which a job seeker wants to tailor their application.

How to use LinkedIn Easy Apply

It is pretty straight forward to apply for a job using LinkedIn Easy Apply:

Step 1

Log into Your LinkedIn Account:

If you don't have one, you'll need to create an account.

Step 2

Search for Jobs:

 Use LinkedIn's job search feature to find job listings that interest you. You can use keywords, location, company names, or industry filters to narrow down your search

Step 3

Identify Easy Apply Jobs:

Look for job listings that have the "Easy Apply" label or button. These are the positions that allow you to apply quickly through the Easy Apply feature.

Step 4

Review Job Details:

Click on a job listing to view the job details, including the job description, requirements, and other relevant information. Ensure the job is a good fit for your skills and qualifications.

Step 5

Click "Easy Apply":

When you find a job you want to apply for, click the blue "Easy Apply" button.

Step 6

Review Pre-Filled Information:

LinkedIn will pre-fill some of your information from your LinkedIn profile into the application form. Verify that this information is accurate and complete.

Step 7

Complete Additional Information (if required):

Some job listings may require you to answer additional questions or provide specific information. Make sure to fill in any required fields.

Step 8

Attach Your Resume:

You might have the option to attach your resume if it's not already pre-filled or if you want to include a tailored resume for the job.

Step 9

Submit Your Application:

Once you've reviewed and completed all the necessary information, click the "Submit" or "Send Application" button. Your application will then be sent to the employer or recruiter.

The problem with LinkedIn Easy Apply

The big draw of Easy Apply is that it is simple and saves you time.

You don’t need to go through the traditional lengthy application process and then bam, with just one click, you have applied.

It’s magical, isn’t it?

Or is it just an illusion?

Well, I would argue yes, it’s an illusion, because you are fooling yourself if you think you are giving yourself the best chance of being considered for an opportunity.

This is why.

Never as good as a normal application

Sure, your application is submitted but all the employer or recruiter sees is your LinkedIn profile in the first instance.

This includes:

  • Your LinkedIn profile picture
  • Your LinkedIn headline
  • The number of jobs you applied for
  • Your four most recent work experiences (job titles + company)
  • Your education
  • Skills you listed and relevant keywords
  • Your contact information

Hardly enough to convince them of your suitability but then of course you do have the option of submitting an accompanying resume too.

But here’s the thing.

It’s not the first thing they see because LinkedIn is all about their profile not your resume.

If you haven’t convinced them with your profile, they are not going to view your resume.

So, naturally, a traditional application with a targeted resume and a great cover letter will always outperform your basic LinkedIn application.

You get lost in the crowd

If you tell someone who wants to get fit and lose weight they can choose either the easy way or the hard way to get a result, which do you think they will choose?

That’s right, easy wins hands down.

The same is true with getting a job.

It’s hard work targeting a resume, writing great cover letters, and making direct applications, so it’s much easier to use something like LinkedIn Easy Apply.

This means that if you use Easy Apply you will be against so much more competition than you would have normally.

Recruiters typically spend just 7 seconds scanning a resume.

When they are screening Easy Apply applications its even quicker because typically there are so many to get through.

This of course means less opportunity for you to get shortlisted for an interview.

When is LinkedIn Easy Apply a good idea?

Now this may be a bit controversial because there are many coaches and consultants out there that say “go ahead, do it if you aren’t that bothered about the job.”

What, why?

It makes no sense to me to waste your time plus that of recruiters and employers if you don’t really want the job on offer.

Typically, when people are not that bothered about a job, they don’t respond to recruiters or employers if they reach out to them in response to their application.

This is especially true if they get many responses.

Be careful though because if you do this, your lack of response may be recorded in their Applicant Tracking Systems.

This means that later, if you see a job with them that you really want, you could already have a red flag against you before you even apply.

The only valid reason I can see for using LinkedIn Easy Apply is when that is the only option given to you on a LinkedIn job advert.

This can happen with volume recruitment for positions such as call centre, factory, or start up project staff.

Still want to apply using LinkedIn Easy Application?

LinkedIn multiple images

I get it, I really do, because sometimes life is hard, and tedious, and throws us many challenges.

You may be working more than one job to pay the bills, balancing study with work, or caring for children or dependent relatives or loved ones.

Perhaps you are in a toxic job where overtime is somehow unofficially ‘compulsory’, so you have very little free time.

Whatever your reason, if you feel LinkedIn Easy Apply is a lifesaver for you because of how quick it is, this is what you need to do to make sure it will work for you.

Create a perfect LinkedIn profile

This is the first and potentially only thing they will see, so make sure it is all singing and all dancing.

Here is an article to help you do this.

Target your resume

As discussed, there is a big danger of the employer or recruiter never seeing this but, just in case they do, make sure you have it optimised it for the job you are applying for.

If you are unsure about how to do this, this article can help you.

Reach out separately to the employer or recruiter

If the job advert gives details of the person who posted the position, reach out via an invite or an InMail.

Make sure you include an appropriate and professional message though explaining who you are and which job you are interested in.

It is very frustrating to receive random messages without context such “interested in your job” because they are likely to be recruiting for many positions at once.

Most people won’t think of doing this so you will have a leg up on your competition.

Check if the job is advertised on a company website

If it is, apply there too.

Explain that you have also applied via LinkedIn, but you are very keen, so you didn’t want to miss out on such a great opportunity.

Again, most people won’t do this, so you are maximizing your chance of getting a response.

Take note of extra instructions

Sometimes recruiters and employers will ask for you to do more than just Easy Apply. This could be emailing a cover letter or resume directly or answering extra questions.

Take note and action their requests because what they are really gauging is your level of interest and attention to detail.

Key takeaways

LinkedIn Easy Apply is a quick and convenient feature but it will never be as good as a conventional application with a targeted resume and a cover letter explaining why you are great fit for a role.

However, if you still want to use it or you are truly short of time, make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date and full of key words and experience because this will make or break your application.

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About the Author

A global resume writer and career coach, Mark is known for his honest, direct, and hard-hitting advice, helping people manage job applications and succeed at interviews. Now based on the Sunshine Coast in Australia, he is the co-founder of Real Life Career Advice and a prolific publisher, contributing to several industry magazines and his daily career advice blog to his 45,000 LinkedIn followers.

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