The Comprehensive Guide to Job Postings

In the search to hire talent to fill an organization’s vacant roles, Human Resources and leadership need to partner together to develop a strategic plan. In that plan, emphasize the importance of crafting appealing job postings. Also apply deliberate attention to the quality and content of those postings.  A job posting is meant to capture the attention of the job seeker and entice the person to apply to the vacant position. This can be challenging for a variety of reasons.  The most prominent being a job seeker scrolls through a myriad of openings trying to determine which job posting(s) is the right one for them to apply.  

A job seeker’s goals are fairly standard. They want to find a role that meets their compensation, work-life balance and skills needs.  If key information is omitted, or a message is incorrectly communicated, prospective talent might not even apply for that role. Or any that the company offers in the future for that matter.  Companies cannot afford to miss out on valuable talent so keep these essential items discussed below in the forefront when creating job postings.

Utilizing Your ATS

Imagine yourself as a job seeker. There are dozens of job boards that have thousands of job postings to sift through so use the company’s Applicant Tracking System (ATS) to post to the most relevant and niche job boards for the role. What will trigger frustration for a job seeker?  Job posts that share minimal information about the role, pay and benefits which does not give them direction as to whether the role will be fulfilling to them. What will catch the job seeker’s attention to motivate them to read through the whole job posting? 

Casual language mixed with formal speech can be a fine line when balancing mundane info with captivating content. Ultimately, job post writers need to focus on what will convince the job seeker to submit an application for the role by personifying themselves as a prospective job seeker.  Keeping those ideas in mind while writing the job description, and in particular thinking like a job seeker, will make an impact in writing job descriptions that are relevant to the job seeker population. 

Accurate Job Postings

Most job descriptions that do not catch the interest of job seekers have content that is lacking something. One of the biggest faux pas of a poorly written job post is that it does not accurately or clearly describe the role of the position. Avoid jargon and buzz phrases that fluff the job post but do not provide clarity.  Put yourself back into the role of job seeker – do not assume that the job seeker knows exactly what the role entails because you, the job description writer, know.  Human Resources and management can fall victim to the familiarity challenge. 

Job description writers are ingrained in the work culture and have heightened understanding of the role and the culture. This makes it challenging to write for those who have zero familiarity with the company and its culture, and specifically the vacant role.  It is helpful to those who write the job description to solicit feedback from other employees. This ensures that the content gives an understanding of what the role entails for those without inside company knowledge. Include the details of the role so the job seeker understands the daily, monthly and annual goals for excellent performance. 

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Job posts can often include subtle and not-so-subtle language components that deter groups of people from applying.  Make sure job posts use gender neutral language.  Men can be preschool teachers, and women can be engineering managers, but often those roles are innately perceived as fulfilled by a specific gender.  Gender Decoder  can be a useful resource to scan for unconscious bias towards groups. Individuals with disabilities are capable of employment but are often underrecruited. The ADA offers a handy resource to guide language so job posts are inclusive for individuals with disabilities. Ensure that individuals of all ages are encouraged to apply. Thoroughly check job posts to ensure that a few undesirable and non-inclusive words do not repel a large number of prospective applicants.   

Engaging Job Postings

While a job description should be factual of the role and include basic facets of information, the post needs to be engaging and reflective of the company culture.  A job seeker is looking for a place to belong while doing the job. This is recruiting. Recruit prospective job seekers by sharing about the company’s purpose and culture.  Why does the company do what they do?  How  do they focus on their employees and customers?  What makes the company so special that the job seeker must apply?  If those questions are not answered within the job post, the higher the chance of prospects skipping over the post. 


A job posting is an advertisement for a vacancy within an organization. It is meant to be a persuasive piece to entice job seekers to apply to it.  Careful attention must be given to making the job posting attractive. Time is of the essence for Human Resources. Although it might take more time to write a thoroughly inclusive job post free of bias which includes a plethora of relevant details about the role.  The time it takes to write in such detail will be worth it to attract additional qualified candidates.

Carefully written job posts will lead to more hires. These hires have higher employee satisfaction due to the lack of “surprises” when they are actually doing the job in the culture they thought they applied to.  Happier employees lead to increased retention. Taking more time to write a detailed and comprehensive job post can save money and time. New employees who feel their role matches what they applied for are less likely to leave. This decreases the need to hire for that same role again in the near future.


If your organization is unsure of how to create engaging job posts that attract candidates and lead to happy hires, contact ExactHire to discuss Full Service Hiring. Let our team of SHRM certified professionals write job posts that are engaging and inclusive. Those posts will then be promoted on nationally known job boards to reach a multitude of job seekers. As applications are submitted, our team will screen the applicants in accordance with your preferences for the role, conduct initial phone interviews, and then hand off qualified candidates to you for a final review and hiring decision!

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