How to Optimize Job Postings to Reach More Qualified Job Seekers

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In order to reach the candidates needed to apply to open requisitions, staffing companies must focus more than ever before on improving visibility for job postings. With changing algorithms in search engines commonly used by job seekers, RPOs in particular have to look for ways to optimize posted jobs to reach the right targeted candidates.

How Staffing Companies Can Enhance Their Job Postings

With this in mind, here are seven best practices to consider for your job postings:

1) Include keywords like job title, city, state, and other common terms. Search engines scan your content for commonly-searched job keywords and phrases, like titles and responsibilities. The more people who click on your content while searching specific job description keywords, the more likely your content will get boosted to the top of future searches. Your postings should be original to your site and not a copy paste from your client’s posting. Otherwise, search engines view it as duplicate content and it will hurt the posting.

Job seekers and search engines look for clarity, and that begins with how information is organized in your job posting and on your careers page. Describe the position in one to two sentences, create lists of responsibilities and requirements and explain what your company does (including your culture statements and employee value proposition).

2) Make it easy to apply. Using a big apply button at the top and bottom of the job posting will increase your likelihood to have a job seeker convert by applying for a job posting you have listed. If a candidate has to search or is confused about how to apply for your job, they’re going to move on.

3) Bullets are your friend. Long paragraphs won’t hold the attention of today’s workforce. We’re used to seeing information in news feed or Twitter-friendly bits and bites. Editing a paragraph heavy job posting down to an introduction and bulleted lists of (1) requirements, (2) responsibilities and (3) perks means that you have easily scannable content a job seeker is more likely to respond to.

4) Consider including salary ranges and information. Google and other aggregator sites are now featuring postings that include this information first. Additionally, if you hesitate to include salary details because you don’t want to weaken your negotiating position or be upfront about less-than-competitive pay, you might want to reconsider. In a 2016 SHRM study, 74% of surveyed applicants said they want to see salary ranges in employers’ job postings. Applicants who don’t see a salary range might not even bother applying for your position: A SMART Recruit Online study found that postings that included a salary range received 30% more clicks than those without one.

5) Add video and images to make your job posting more appealing. Video platform Ongig did a study on video job descriptions and found that video job ads get a 487% increase in engagement over text ads. That’s not a typo. Creating a simple video to accompany a job posting can amplify your engagement by nearly 500%. It’s personal, it gives a job seeker a realistic snapshot of the company culture, and it ranks higher in search (as well as on social platforms).

Additionally, search engines are looking for more than compelling text. They have a tendency to value pages that have visual elements. Your (client’s) careers page should include photos and video. Including multimedia on a careers page helps you give a clearer picture of the company and boosts your metadata (the language that search engines use to read websites). Adding valuable metadata to your web pages shows search engines that you’re focused on creating a thorough resource.

6) Encourage employees to share. When using an auto scheduling or posting tool for your employees or asking employees to share on their social networks, this will increase the reach. Get proactive: don’t just post and pray for candidates to start rolling in. It may take a little more time, but sharing your job on the right social networks will help get it in front of the right candidates. So will setting up an employee referral reward or incentive program.

7) Use paid advertising or targeting. Talroo, in particular, has a set of tools to help elevate visibility for your job posting and hyper-target qualified candidates. The technology exists and it won’t break your recruiting budget, so using data-driven talent attraction solutions allows you to optimize a paid campaign in real-time, amplifying what’s working and turning off what doesn’t.

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Using data to inform talent decisions isn’t a new concept. But what is new is the volume of data available and the speed with which it can be analyzed. What’s new is that data can be used to predict hiring outcomes, not just track them. According to LinkedIn Talent Solutions Global Recruiting Trends 2018 report, 50% of companies report using data to build better candidate offers, 41% are using it for workforce planning, and 38% to assess talent supply and demand. These data points are the most important to focus on for reaching more qualified job seekers.

The current talent marketplace is competitive for any company. Staffing agencies and RPOs have to work harder than ever before to reach candidates and fill requisitions because we are truly only as good as our last placement. Using these practices to optimize your job postings can help do more for your staffing company in the digital space, freeing up your recruiting team’s time to focus on high-touch tasks like client SLAs, personal candidate outreach, and one-on-one time with hiring managers.

Topics: Staffing Essentials

Updated February 19, 2019