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Asked by Supreeth Konanur on October 27, 2016

I recently graduated college and I have been working as a sales executive for the past 9 months. I plan to go back to school for an advanced degree in a few months. Is it okay for me to connect with my customers and colleagues on LinkedIn, even if I'll likely be looking for a different job to offset my college fees?

Answered by Ashlyn, Hiring Expert at Worthington Industries, on November 7, 2016

Hello!
Yes, it is always a good idea to link with colleagues and customers on LinkedIn even if you do not plan to remain in direct communication with them in the future. Building a network takes time, the more people you know, the more opportunities you can identify once you've graduated with your advanced degree. Best of luck!

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Answered by Ashley, Hiring Expert at Cardinal Health, on November 9, 2016

Congratulations on making the decision to go back to school!
It is completely acceptable to connect with current colleagues and customers on LinkedIn. I would actually recommend it to ensure you keep those connections going and to build your network. However, I would encourage you to also look into your company's policy on engaging with customers after you leave the company. You should check to see if you signed any sort of agreement that prohibits interacting with customers for any set period of time.

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Answered by Sara, Hiring Expert at Grace, on November 11, 2016

It is absolutely ok to connect with your customers and colleagues on LinkedIn. This networking platform serves as a tool to keep your network going. It is essential to build your network, and over the years you will find it will continue to grow. I have people in my network who have been colleagues, managers, neighbors, parents of my kids’ friends, customers, etc. You never know when you will need to reach out to your network to help you or for you to assist them. I still talk to colleagues that I have not worked with in years, and several of my job opportunities have come from networking. Keep in mind that if your colleagues and customers do not want to keep in contact or connect with you they do not have to. Everyone has been where you are now, starting out and trying to find out the best path for your career. I wish you the best of luck and continue to build your network.

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Answered by Lina, Hiring Expert at ADP, on January 30, 2017

Hello! Unless your company has a policy stating that you cannot contact or communicate with customers after you leave the company, you should definitely connect with both customers and colleagues on LinkedIn. Connecting with them will help you build your network which could help you find a job upon graduation. Hope this helps, good luck!

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