Irresistible Job Postings and How to Write Them

Friday Feb 5th 2016
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Every small business owner wants to hire the best people. But how do you attract the right candidates? It all starts with writing a great job posting. These five tips can help.

By Larry Alton

Attracting great talent to your small business is no easy task. The hiring process begins with job postings that must compete against myriad higher-paying, more-attractive listings. This may seem intimidating, but it's not impossible. When you pay attention to the verbiage, the structure, and the content of your job postings, you can and will get noticed by the right candidates.

According to an infographic from Roth Staffing, candidates reportedly spend an average of 49.7 seconds reading "questionable" job descriptions and approximately 77 seconds considering "promising" job postings. In other words, you normally have less than a minute to make a positive impression.

Most candidates typically regard a job search as a time when they need to impress employers. However, the roles are flipped in the beginning. At the front-end of a job search, you—the employer—need to impress the candidate. This status changes once you have your choice of multiple candidates, but don't assume that you're in control quite yet.

5 Tips for Writing Great Job Postings

How to Write Outstanding Job Postings for Small Business

How can you attract good job candidates to your business? If a consistent recipe for success existed, no business would ever have trouble filling its roles. The truth is that getting your job postings noticed requires a healthy blend of company-specific strategies and proven techniques.

A job posting may seem like a small component of the hiring process, but it's the portal through which the majority of candidates will apply. Make sure you consider all of the different elements involved and keep the following five tips in mind. By crafting a job posting that gets noticed, you'll earn access to better talent.

1. Choose the right job-listing sites

Before you can even focus on writing the job posting, you need to choose the right job-listing sites for effective distribution and engagement. After all, if you disseminate your postings on the wrong job sites, you waste your time and yield little to no return.

While national job-listing sites such as Monster and Indeed are great for posting jobs, you may also consider including smaller niche sites that cater to very specific audiences. For example, the website Built in NYC specializes in connecting New York City-based startups with job-seekers. There's also a website called MetroAtlantaJobs which, as you may guess, helps connect Atlanta residents with local jobs. Nearly every major city has dedicated job sites like these.

Including smaller, geo-specific websites in your listing strategy lets reach a highly-targeted audience that's more likely to engage with your postings.

2. Keep the job title simple

Titles are very important. While it may sound like a good idea to go with a trendy term like "Marketing Ninja" or "SEO Wiz," ambiguous titles like these actually turnoff most job seekers. Odd job titles also make it hard for job hunters who use search engines to find listings.

"Stick to advertising for more traditional job titles, which will increase the ability for your postings to show up in search results on job boards, search engines and social media sites," says Mary Lorenz in an article she wrote for CareerBuilder.

3. Include salary ranges

Job seekers want to know about compensation. While you may be unwilling to provide an exact figure, there's no excuse for not including a salary range along with possible bonuses, commissions, and benefits. These items are very important to candidates, and listing them will increase applications.

According to the Roth Staffing infographic, 65 percent of candidates say a bulleted list of benefits makes them more likely to apply for a job. And if you're looking for high-level candidates, most top performers won't even consider a job posting if it doesn't include information about compensation.

4. Use the right keywords

While some people will find your job listing directly, most will run across your posting by using search engines. In order to cater to this audience, include the right keywords, titles, and phrases that job seekers use to search for openings. This will increase the number of people who see your job listings.

5. Employ a traffic strategy

Finally, make sure that you actively drive people to your job listings. Don't assume that once you post a listing people will click on it. Share the listing on your social media accounts, send out the link to your contact list, and let people know that you have an opening. The more traffic you drive to the posting, the greater the pool of applicants from which to choose.

Larry Alton is an independent business consultant specializing in social media trends, business, and entrepreneurship. Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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