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Hiring the right people is arguably the most important job of a business owner. But how can you hire the right people if you don’t attract the applicants you want?
If you fall short in one of the three areas below, not only will you be prone to getting few applicants, but you will also be prone to getting the wrong applicants.
Your Job Posting Is Ineffective
Writing a great job description is an artform that often gets overlooked. After all, a job posting is really an advertisement. As the advertiser, you need to sell your target audience (job seekers) on your product (your job). There are few important steps to do this effectively.
First, reach the right audience by using keywords and a representative job title. Think about which terms your ideal job seekers are using to search, then create a job posting that incorporates those terms. For example, we’ve found that job posting titles with extra or non-traditional terms (think: sales ninja, marketing guru) receive far fewer applicants than those without.
Next, go beyond outlining a job’s responsibilities and requirements, and include things that will really appeal to job seekers. When it comes down to it, employees want to set themselves up for a comfortable personal life and a fulfilling professional life. This means they want to make livable wages, have adequate health care, enjoy job security and room for growth, and receive recognition for the work they do. By including these important factors in your job description, you’ll do a better job of getting people to apply.
You Have Unrealistic Expectations
If your job posting is well written but still isn’t bringing in good candidates, then it’s time to review your candidate expectations.
Unrealistic expectations often arise when employers require too much experience or skill-sets that are too specific. They also arise when employers expect lots of candidates, but offer below-market compensation.
To determine whether you have unrealistic expectations, do a little research. Talk to colleagues and to others in your industry and browse similar job postings. Then determine where you can be flexible. Are there skills or software programs that you are willing to teach a new hire? Is it truly necessary for someone to have 7 to 10 years of experience, or is 5 years enough? Would you be willing to increase the salary or offer a signing bonus if you could get the exact candidate you want?
Once you answer questions like this, edit and re-post your job opening.
Your Job Needs More Visibility
If you have a stellar job posting and realistic expectations, then it’s possible that you’re just not reaching job seekers. With thousands of job boards out there and a growing recruitment trend in social media, getting in front of job seekers is an increasingly difficult task.
Consider diversifying your search strategy to get more visibility. How are your competitors and other companies advertising similar jobs? What channels did you use in the past to find top candidates? Have you encouraged current members of your team to spread the word on your behalf? And what other job boards, both general and niche, can you try posting to?
Getting more candidates is challenging, but if you follow the suggestions above, you’ll be well on your way to hiring your next star employee.
Ian Siegel is the CEO and Co-founder of ZipRecruiter. He started ZipRecruiter as a way to expedite the hiring process for internal hiring managers who did not have the budget for a third-party recruiter. ZipRecruiter has now been used by more than 100,000 businesses to distribute their job openings, and runs the largest job alert program in the United States.