Write Better Job Postings to Attract the Best Candidates

July 2nd, 2012

Every story starts with a great opening. As a hiring manager or supervisor, you should consider that the story of each of your employees gets its start not when you bring them in for interviews, but before that, as they read your carefully-crafted job postings.

Even with jobs that are available on the “quiet” job market – where job postings never make it to the newspaper or other open forums for the general public – most of the time, job postings are written and evaluated by potential new employees.

Now that it’s summertime, here are some tips from Olympic Staffing to give some sizzle to the next job postings you write.

Think “Keyword Rich”

With the explosion of websites that aggregate and republish open job postings, it’s important that you think like your potential applicants and include the keywords that they will be using to search through hundreds and thousands of job postings. Include notable certifications, licenses or industry experience, but make sure that the core job functions of this position are also adequately represented.

No buzzwords need apply

Do not include the dreaded buzzwords that circulate in the business world. You don’t want to hire a thought-leader or visionary; you are interested in effective communicators or experienced project managers. Test your job postings with existing employees; this will be a good gauge of whether your writing matches up with the real world of your industry.

Be thorough, but not exhaustive

At Olympic, we have seen every type of job posting, from sentence-long summaries to two-page long dissertations. Strike a balance between those two extremes by aiming for a complete description of what you are looking for in this position and in what your company is about; do not write an exhaustive laundry list of all possible tasks and projects.

Include salary, or at least a range

Save time by including the salary range for the position in the job posting. You will weed out the employees who simply won’t accept that salary, and indicate to qualified applicants where you pay in the spectrum of employee compensation. You will lose those applicants in the interview process anyway, so include a range or state something to the effect that you pay an industry standard or by some other quantifiable measure.

Corporate culture matters

The best job posting descriptions include a statement on corporate culture. Give a potential employee a sense of what working there is like. Is business casual the standard of dress? Do you offer on-the-job training? Paid time off? Office picnics? These intangible benefits are real enough to make a difference to your best candidates.

Hiring managers rely on Olympic Staffing throughout the recruitment process, which includes the writing of effective job postings. If you are looking for more tips on how to attract candidates through better job postings, please contact Olympic Staffing today.