July 27, 2015
Writing a job post sounds easy. Anyone can do it, but not everyone can do it well. A well-written job post can mean the difference between a flurry of job seekers clicking and applying and the dreadful stillness of little to no activity – or worse yet, the wrong type of activity when unqualified applicants apply.
How can you make sure the job seekers you want to hire find your job posts? Here are 10 proven secrets you will want to use to write a highly effective job post.
Secret #1: Write an Informative Job Title
The job title is the first thing job seekers see. They will make a snap judgment and either move on or read the details of your description. This means you will need to make sure your title gives the right first impression by choosing words that most effectively convey what the position entails. For instance, instead of simply stating “sales representative,” “cook,” or “receptionist,” be more specific by detailing what sector or industry the position will be in. Write “cook – cruise line,” “sales representative – pharmaceutical,” or “receptionist – legal.”
Secret #2: Describe Why Your Company is Great
With more than eight million job postings on the web competing for people’s attention, your job post is more than just a list of requirements. It is an advertisement that needs to capture job seekers’ interests. Emphasize the most enticing aspects of working for your company. Highlight the great perks. Show them why they’ll love your company.
Secret #3: Explain the Position in Detail
After reading your job posting, applicants should clearly understand all aspects of what the position entails. The posting should encompass the full scope of the job—not just everyday duties but also the larger role the employee will play in your organization.
Secret #4: Tell Job Seekers What You Are Looking For
If you are looking for certain skills, experience or traits, then include those in your job posting. While some job seekers may ignore your requirements, chances are that if you are clear about what traits you are looking for, you will significantly cut down on your work later by not having to sift through piles of unqualified resumes.
Secret #5: Be Clear
The best way to be clear with your job post is easy: use simple wording. Even if the job is complex, your posting doesn’t have to be. Using words that are easy to understand will help get your message across more quickly and effectively. In fact, utilizing big words often makes the job posting harder to understand.
Note: This rule doesn’t apply to widely-used industry jargon that applicants are expected to understand in their role.
Secret #6: Group Information Logically
A long or complicated-looking job posting deters people from reading it. Organize your posting in a way that makes it simple to read and easy for job seekers to refer to when fine-tuning their resumes or cover letters. This can be easily done by adding sections such as “Required Skills,” “Education” and “Job Responsibilities” to distinguish one section from the other.
Secret #7: Make It Actionable
Now that you have captured a candidate’s interest, direct that interest towards action. Tell the candidate how to receive more information and give them clear instructions on how to apply.
Secret #8: Write For an Online Audience
Search engines are the primary way people find things, so you need to make sure your post ends up as a top search result. To do this, use keywords that are associated with the position you’re looking to hire. For example, you may be looking for an “administrative assistant,” but other people commonly refer to the same position as an “executive assistant”. In this case, you should make sure to include both of those terms in your posting as long as they are relevant to your job opening.
Secret #9: Ask For a Second Opinion
Two (or three or more) heads are better than one when writing a job post. As you begin your process of writing, ask for the opinion of others in your company — this can be the hiring manager, supervisors and/or coworkers. In doing so, you will likely gain new insights on how to write a job requirement or even pick up the keywords that unlock a job’s “attractiveness factor.”
Secret #10: Test Your Job Post
With your content now informative, engaging and easy to understand, there’s one last litmus test to make sure your job post is a winning one: do a sanity check. Sometimes you’ve been looking at something so long that you can’t imagine it any other way. Put your posting away for a few days or longer, if possible. When you look at it again, ask yourself these three questions:
- Would I be excited to apply for this job?
- Does the posting tell me everything I need to know to apply for this job?
- Is the posting as concise and informative as possible?
If the posting answers each question, wait no longer and post away.
Over the next few months, we will explore these secrets in greater detail. If you found any of these pointers to be helpful, you won’t want to miss what we share next. Stay tuned.