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Using LinkedIN in Local Government

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Angela Stubbs, Economic Development Officer at the City of Kingston.recently did an interview and a guest post on how they have been using LinkedIn.

Angela has championed the use of LinkedIn at the City of Kingston and in this post she provides some insights into her experiences with LinkedIn as a a social media tool from a local government perspective.

Strengthening Business Relationships
LinkedIn as a communication tool for the Economic Development department at the City of Kingston has been a useful addition to the suite of social media tools we use to strengthen our business relationships and raise awareness of business information and events.

Strengthening Professional Relationships
It enables me as an Economic Development practitioner to build and maintain professional relationships between key stakeholders and a business network that extends from our immediate municipality and outwards, to keep up to date and in a loop of communication.

Visibility with the City of Kingston Business Community
The key benefit from an organization’s point of view is that our activities are visible to all connections on LinkedIn and every engagement we make with others strengthens our department’s visibility. Key level team members are encouraged to create and maintain a LinkedIn profile and strategic groups have been established to target discussion and awareness of events with industry sectors and levels of management, for example, we have a CEO Round Table Group for a network that meets monthly, a Women in Business Network group that actively posts discussions and promotes business events, and an Industry Group that has access to business updates and opportunity to network online. Groups offer discussion forums and can become a place for people to meet up and have a closed environment to exchange knowledge and thoughts. You can also publish news regarding activities of specific interest to the members of that group.

LinkedIn also lets organizations create Company Pages, which other individuals can follow, which provides an opportunity to promote and market the services and features of the organisation. The Company Pages also let you publish updates about your organization, for instance projects you’re currently working on, events or new services, making it an interesting place to encourage key stakeholders to follow.

Sharing Content
To showcase specific project work and documents it is useful to explore the tools available under the “More” tab on Linked In as these provide the opportunity to upload pdf’s, PowerPoint presentations, word documents etc, through the use of packages such as Slide share or Box.net.

A Source of Wisdom and Idea-Sharing
Another tool on Linked In is the Questions and Answers tab which provides a place to pose a business related question and seek information globally. Within a 48 hour period you receive input from expertise around the world which you can review and filter according to relevance.
This helps to focus on specific topics you may be researching, or to gain more insight into a current trend or issue.

LinkedIn is a useful addition to the communication channels and network tools available to professionals and the City of Kingston economic Department has added this advantage to its everyday business.

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