How often do you hear, “If I update my LinkedIn profile or start becoming active people will think I’m looking for a job!” Ten years ago, I would’ve agreed with that statement. Today, as someone who answers questions about how to write an executive resume and more, I disagree wholeheartedly. Here’s why it makes sound sense to stay on LinkedIn even if you have a job:

LinkedIn has approximately 500 million users all over the world. Even taking into account that a few million make up recruiters, career coaches and people trying to make a sale – it’s not likely that more than half are actively job hunting. That means countless are happily employed, open to options and using LinkedIn to grow their networks.

Below are 4 reasons why only using LinkedIn during a job hunt is a mistake – one that you might regret down the road:

#1 If You Stay on LinkedIn, The Network You Build Now Will Be Invaluable Later

Ever heard the saying “Dig your well BEFORE you take a drink from it?” This applies to your LinkedIn network. Unfortunately, it’s all too common to hear of someone who has lost their job, and then starts frantically trying to reach out to people they either don’t know or haven’t talked to in years.

While there are always people willing to help and offer advice, those people are much more likely to be amenable when you’ve introduced yourself months/years before and kept in touch.

The Bottom Line?

Use LinkedIn to build a strong network of quality connections by staying engaged, keeping in touch and being active. The social equity you’ve built will reap rewards when you need it the most.

#2 Recruiters Want the Best Candidate, Not the Best Job Seeker

Recruiters are not paid to find unemployed or those actively job hunting. They are paid to hire the best person for the role. This means they search among competitor companies, and those with the right experience, and work to convince them that they should consider the role.

According to LinkedIn, 70% of the global workforce is comprised of passive talent (with just 30% being active job seekers).

The Bottom Line?

Unless there is nothing that might entice you to consider an alternative role, if you stay away from LinkedIn, or ignore the quality of your profile, you reduce your chances of getting “found” and the ability to have options should the time come that you need them.

#3 Unlike your Resume, It’s Easy to Update Your LinkedIn (and you’ll be grateful!)

Most people only update their resume when they are ready to start hunting. Once the job search is done, the resume gets saved to a drive only to be opened and dusted off the next time.

For whatever reason, people tend to be better about at least putting some bare-boned information about what their role entails on LinkedIn, and often include a highlight or achievement from time to time.

It stands to reason, therefore, that when it comes time to update your resume, if you stay on LinkedIn your profile may serve as an excellent reference point.

The Bottom Line?

Keeping an up-to-date LinkedIn profile will make updating your resume much less painful!

#4 If You Are Always Active, No One Will Be the Wiser

If you are always active on LinkedIn and make it a habit of engaging with others, sharing articles of interest and liking the posts of others – while it’s likely you will ramp up your activity slightly – it’s not likely that you will set off any alarm bells.

Who knows? Your company may appreciate your efforts at positioning them (and you!) in a positive light.

The Bottom Line?

When you make LinkedIn engagement a habit, it will be much easier to keep a job search under the radar.

The ROI of Staying on LinkedIn

It is clear that LinkedIn is no longer just for job seekers.

By building and maintaining a strong network today, remaining engaged and active on LinkedIn, and keeping your profile up to date, you’ll be strongly positioned should the time come to job hunt, and who knows? You may attract the attention of a recruiter for a role you never considered!

Previously appeared on Ivy Exec