Jessica Miller-Merrell | , , ,| By
It’s a candidate driven marketplace. The job market including tech is red-hot, and the brightest minds in our workforce have options like never before. The unemployment rate for professionals is currently hovering around 5% – its lowest point since 2008. In the tech sector, unemployment is even lower below 2%. Good candidates are highly in demand with many experts predicting that this market is expected to dip any time soon possibly into 2017.
Economists at the U.S. Financial Reserve Board expects this trend to continue into 2017, with experts predicting that unemployment rates could continue to drop. Whatever the future brings, it is critical right now that we engage, relate to and build relationships with the right candidate audiences. Otherwise, we, as recruiters and also employers are missing a huge opportunity: the chance to employ the brightest minds – those who can drive revenue, build great products and services and are eager to take advantage of this growing marketplace.
This competitive job market is forcing talent acquisition leaders to spend more time sourcing candidates, driving employment brand programs and specific job posting assets for every job requisition and opening.
How to Write a Perfect Job Posting
When it comes to job postings, it’s a science and an art. Branding meets procedure. In order to reach and engage candidates, you need both to effectively engage and reach the right qualified community of candidates. I’m a fan of posting your job openings on a variety of outlets including job aggregators, job boards and your own career site to capture the attention of the perfect candidate community. The challenge is it that the job market is a moving target. It’s always evolving and changing.
In part 1, I already discussed the best job posting length which is 300-500 words. The job posting needs to be long enough to provide information for the candidate, hold their attention and also provide information for search engines and bots to index for SEO or search engine optimization purposes. I want to also make a quick distinction between a job posting, a job description and a job advertisement. They are three very separate things.
What is a Job Description?
A job description is a description of the responsibilities of the job. It is and was designed for legal purposes to identify if a candidate is able to perform the essential functions of a job. Your job description is not a marketing or branding document and should be treated separate from a job posting.
A job advertisement is like a billboard. It’s a quick snapshot designed to grab the attention of the candidate. A Twitter Job Ad is a job advertisement or a job ad in a magazine or a newspaper. It’s is short, specific and designed to drive an interested candidate to a landing page or individual job posting to learn more specific information about the job using a job posting.
With so much competition to get eyes on your job postings, it’s important to establish a standard process or expectation threshold in order to reach the right audience with your perfect job posting. I’ve found there exists 6 pillars to the perfect job posting. In this Part 2 series, I will discuss 2 of the 6 pillars that ensure a perfect job posting.
#1 – Showcase the Brand
Your brand is your reputation and allows you to communicate the core values and what makes your company a great place to work. Work with your employees to understand what keeps them sticking around the office and focus on these “brand characteristics” because they come directly from the point of view of your most valuable asset, your employee. Use media to help your showcase your brand and tell your employer story using videos, graphics, social media and other mediums both traditional and nontraditional to speak to your target audience. Considering embedding video in your job posting, adding a professionally designed graphic header that helps unify your message that aligns with your employee driven characteristics and benefits working for your company.
#2 – Correctly Represent the Job Opening
Be honest here. The biggest mistake in a job posting like an online dating profile is being someone you are not. Candidates are increasingly researching your organization using sites like Glassdoor, JobCase and Indeed to read reviews and gain insights into your culture and work atmosphere for the entire organization as well as specific business locations.
The single most important part of your job posting is the title. Like an email subject headline, it is the first piece of information your candidate will read. It should accurately describe the job, provide information about the skill set requirement and encourage the candidate to either explore or move along to another opportunity.
Examples of Good Job Titles:
- Lead Java Developer
- Assistant Store Manager, Houston, TX
- Java Software Developer: Web UI
- iCloud Java Server Engineer
- PPC Manager – Fashion/Apparel – Google AdWords/Bing Ads
Examples of Poor (and Actual) Job Titles:
- UI & J2EE Architect / Java Developer / Java Lead / Java Solution Architect. This job posting subject line includes too many variations, so it’s hard to know what the actual position is.
- IMMEDIATE HIRE – Core Java Developer. Terms like ‘immediate hire’ & ‘multiple positions’ are misleading and make the employer look desperate for a hire.)
- ETL-Guest Services. Don’t include acronyms that your candidate audience won’t search for or understand.
- 8863 iOS Developer. This job posting subject includes a random job number that is only understandable by the Employer.