How to make your job post stand out from the rest

Looking to hire new employees soon? You’re not alone — our recent survey of 400 small business owners and 2,000 employees found that about one-third of employees intend to look for a new job in the next year or two, leaving many employers with open positions to fill. 

Those statistics combined with the labor shortage looming over the nation makes your ability to create a uniquely appealing job posting more important than ever. 

It’s not easy to rise to the top of the stack in the job market. But with a little extra effort, you can attract the strong talent you need to boost your business. 

Start with a candidate persona

Before you can create the perfect job posting, you need to nail down exactly what type of candidate you’re looking for to fill the role. A candidate persona, similar to buyer personas used by marketing teams, help you zero in on who you’re targeting for the job. 

The details of the persona shouldn’t usually include demographics, but instead specific attributes the perfect employee would have in terms of things like: 

  • Experience
  • Education level
  • Skillset
  • Goals 
  • Interests 

To get a better grasp on what you should be searching for, take a look at your most successful employees in the same or similar roles. Interview those team members and learn what it is that sets them apart. 

Once you’ve identified the characteristics needed for your open role, optimize your job posting to attract job seekers you want to apply.  

Highlight the right factors

According to our recent survey, job seekers are looking for certain things while hunting for their next position. The top 10 priorities include:

1. Company leadership
2. Pay
3. Great co-workers
4. Flexible work hours
5. A predictable work schedule
6. Company culture
7. Learning and development opportunities
8. Company commitment to sustainability and the environment
9. A short commute
10. Health insurance

Take these factors into consideration when building your job post. Highlight your commitment to solid leadership, emphasize the importance of company culture, and be sure to list any benefits you provide, like insurance, learning and development opportunities, and flexibility.

Pick the right job title

Your job title should reflect the role as much as possible, with no added fluff —serious job seekers aren’t looking to be the next “rockstar sales manager” or “bar maintenance warrior.” If you include buzzwords like this in the title, it may not pop up in searches for basic keywords. 

Make sure the title is in line with industry standards, meaning it’s common among similar businesses. This will make your title more searchable and result in more eyeballs on the post. 

Make sure the level qualifier in the title is appropriate for the actual role and pay grade. Including “executive” or “manager” when it’s not necessary will lead applicants who think they aren’t qualified to ignore the opportunity. 

Balance the responsibilities

Your list of responsibilities should accomplish two things: 

  • Clearly and succinctly lay out what the employee will be doing on a daily basis 
  • Sell the role with unique opportunities

It’s important to find a nice balance between the two goals. The description of responsibilities should accurately reflect day-to-day activities and duties—promising a plethora of excitement in the role and then failing to deliver on it could result in an uptick in your turnover rate. 

Still, you’re trying to sell the role and make it stand out from the competition. Additional data from the Manifest’s study found that 39% of job seekers prioritize jobs that speak to their passions, so capitalize on this by highlighting unique opportunities and interesting details.

For example, if you’re trying to fill a bartender position, maybe they would have the opportunity to create new beverages that might be added to the existing menu. If you’re looking for a retail storefront manager, you could highlight a chance to win a reward for exceeding sales goals. 

Make the list of responsibilities realistic, as brief as possible without losing any important details, and unique enough to catch the eyes of job seekers as they sift through hundreds of descriptions for the same position. 

Don’t overdo the qualifications

Including every above-and-beyond skill you think your employee will ever need at any point in their job is a mistake. Realistically, your new team member will likely only use about 60% of the “required” abilities from a day-to-day basis, and the rest can be taught on the job. 

If you have a giant list of qualifications, many candidates may incorrectly deem themselves inadequate and not even apply. Start with a simple list of only the necessary skills they would need walking in on the first day. Your team will get them up to speed in no time. You can also help them complete any certifications they are lacking after they start. 

Let’s say for example that you run a restaurant and are looking for servers who could double as bartenders. While previous bar experience could be beneficial, you can train them once they’re hired.  

Make it accessible 

The technical details of the post itself can make or break your hiring process. Making sure your job post is easy to view and read is critical. 

  • Formatting: Your text should have short paragraphs, bulleted lists, and simple headings. 
  • Device accessibility: An AIHR Digital study found that over 90% of job seekers do their actual job seeking on their phone. Keep your careers page mobile-optimized (here’s how to do that) and make sure all your images and text all look good from a phone screen. 
  • Writing style: Don’t use buzzwords, jargon, or internally specific language, including acronyms that people outside of your business might not understand. 

Consider using multimedia

To make your job posting truly stand out, take your paragraphs and reformat them into a presentation. As long as you still include the core text, you can get creative with images, infographics, videos, and more. 

Larger companies have led the charge in creative recruitment strategies. Their tactics can be easily applied to your local business. A few examples of great multimedia usage include: 

A multimedia tool is an impactful strategy for selling your job and catching the eyes of job seekers. However, be sure to include an alternative viewing method for those who are unable to see it. 

Boost your posting

Once your open position is up and running on all the top job boards, put a little juice behind it. Not sure how to do that? Homebase hiring has your back. 

Our hiring tool makes every step of the process easy and efficient. We offer customizable job templates, free online posting, and the option to boost your post. Then you can track all your applicants in one place and identify the best candidates with screener questions. Once you’ve narrowed it down, you can message applicants and schedule interviews—all within Homebase.

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