Despite high unemployment, some employers are finding it more difficult than expected to hire new employees right now. As strange as this may sound, part of the issue is how easy it is to apply for jobs.
To explain, let’s start with an example. With the prevalence of not just job boards but also phone apps candidates use to apply for jobs, it’s become easier to apply for any given vacancy. In fact, it can sometimes be done in as little as one click.
This simplicity may mean more applicants, but it also means the applicants are less likely to read much about the job before deciding whether it’s interesting enough to click on. Employers have a few precious seconds to not only gain prospective applicants’ attention but also say enough about the job so applicants want to click.
Employers also don’t want to make the job so simplistic and broad that none of the applicants are qualified or interested once they learn more, further complicating this issue.
Here are a few tips to get past that first 2-second scan and get the right employees to click “apply”:
- Ensure the headline says a lot about the job itself and the ideal candidate. For example, “customer service position” doesn’t say as much as “enthusiastic people with customer service experience wanted immediately.” The headline may be the only item the applicant even reads before making a snap judgment. Make it count.
- The post itself should be descriptive in terms of the experience and skills needed. This allows those who gets far enough to read the whole thing to have a better understanding of whether they’re a good fit.
- The job post should also say something about what it’s like to work for the organization. This can help those who read through to get an idea of what the organizational culture is like and see if they would fit in.
- Put the salary right in the title. Including salary information upfront is something many organizations resist, but it can help employees self-select. In other words, candidates who are not willing to work for the offered wage will be unlikely to apply (and neither of you will waste time). Meanwhile, candidates who would have assumed it doesn’t pay enough will now know whether it’s an acceptable amount and may apply.
- Include urgency in your job post. This may mean indicating that interviews are happening immediately, or it may mean indicating a need to hire quickly. Either way, making the post seem both urgent and likely to get candidates an interview will go a long way toward enticing people who are looking for a quick start.
- Consider paying to sponsor your job post. The exact process may differ depending on which job board you’re using, but sponsored posts usually are seen by more people. In many cases, they’re also better targeted toward individuals who are more likely to have the qualifications you’re looking for—and thus may be more likely to apply.
- Ensure your post has the types of keywords candidates search for. This will ensure it comes up more often in search results and is seen by more people.
What has your experience been? What else have you done recently to make your job post stand out and be the one that gets clicks?
Bridget Miller is a business consultant with a specialized MBA in International Economics and Management, which provides a unique perspective on business challenges. She’s been working in the corporate world for over 15 years, with experience across multiple diverse departments including HR, sales, marketing, IT, commercial development, and training.