“With just one click, you can now endorse your connections for a skill they’ve listed on their profile or recommend one they haven’t added yet. Think your connection is great at programming AND project management? Let them know!”
Just getting up to speed on endorsements? If you search for endorsements in the LinkedIn help center, you’ll find the following definition:
“An endorsement is a one-click way for your connections to endorse the Skills & Expertise listed on your profile. There is not an automatic way to request an endorsement. A written recommendation is not included with this feature.”
In contrast, recommendations have been around for quite a while on LinkedIn and are arguably one of the most important features in building and communicating your professional brand. Reading third-party recommendations can give further insight into your professionalism, work ethic, and overall character. LinkedIn characterizes recommendations by stating the following:
“A recommendation is a written statement of recommendation from a connection. You may request recommendations from your connections, as well as proactively recommend your connections.”
So here’s the main difference between LinkedIn’s endorsements and recommendations. Endorsements are a quick and easy way to highlight a connection’s skills. They are unsolicited; in other words, you cannot automatically request an endorsement. Recommendations, on the other hand, represent written statements from your professional contacts. Recommendations can be both solicited and unsolicited.
There are differing opinions from LinkedIn experts as to whether or not endorsements carry much weight. After all, anyone you are connected to, whether they know you well or not, can endorse your skills. Recommendations take time to think about and write and generally speaking, most of your connections will only recommend you if they know you well enough to do so. So remember, the next time someone asks you to recommend them on LinkedIn, they are more than likely referring to the written recommendations, not a one-click skills endorsements.