Austin Beerworks made national news in May after the company listed an open bartender position. The job listing included benefits such as health care, paid vacation, sick days, and 401k matching. Co-founder Michael Graham declared on the company’s Facebook page that 100% of the applicants they scheduled for interviews showed up despite the employment apathy his colleagues in the hospitality industry were reporting at the time. “We’re seeing lots of posts about how nobody wants to work right now. Just wanted to share our experience…People want 𝘨𝘰𝘰𝘥 work.”
As great job candidates continue to elude many employers, it’s time to take a hard look at how you’re trying to reach them. Your job listing is your foot in the door. And what job seekers want to see in that description has evolved. Optimizing job listings to be indexed on Google for Jobs and other digital considerations are a big part of it. After all, job candidates can’t decide to act on your job post if they never see it in the first place. But let’s stick to human communication for the sake of this post.
To speak job seekers’ language right now, consider improving your job listings in these ways:
Know What You Want And Communicate Effectively
Some of the most common advice from relationship experts is learning to communicate what you want and need. Don’t make your partner guess. Your job descriptions should do this, too.
Requiring COVID-19 vaccines among employees? Have a plan to bring employees back to the office fulltime? State those details in the job listing. Job postings requiring vaccinations have nearly tripled over the summer. The best places to work in Austin unabashedly do it, as illustrated by a recent senior software engineer listing for Austin real estate tech startup Orchard:
“Our offices are open for our team members who would like to come in on a voluntary basis and for team members who work in essential in-office roles. As part of our commitment to health and safety, all employees currently working in our office spaces are required to show proof of vaccination. We anticipate making an official return to the office on a hybrid basis in January of 2022 and are excited to see one another in person. Until then, your interviews will all happen virtually.”
“It won’t make your opportunity universally desirable, but that’s OK. It will give job candidates who fit your culture and the role the opportunity to feel a connection,” The HT Group Vice President of Sales Claire Reese, CSP. “Almost 30% of new hires leave within the first 90 days of starting—which is a painful process that’s worth avoiding. How? By being open and clear about your culture and what you’re looking for in your job candidates.”
Spill (Some Of) The Beans
Career Plug’s 2021 Candidate Experience Report found that job seekers want to know more details about a role earlier in the hiring process so they can make informed decisions. For example, 39% of respondents now expect compensation to be included in an initial job post. “This is a huge – and easy – opportunity for employers to improve candidate experience while also creating a win for their applicant screening process, as job seekers will self-select…early in the process,” the report concludes.
“Whether to include compensation and other details in a job listing or not is a timeless debate,” Reese states. “What has changed over the years, though, is a job seeker’s ability to find out that information—and more—by other means. Sources like Glassdoor and Comparably have changed the game.”
In fact, 86% of job seekers check out these review and rating sites to decide where to apply for a job. So you can participate in the conversation, or you can ignore it, but make no mistake that the information is being shared with or without you.
Plus, Reese points out, that listing compensation may become law in an increasing number of jurisdictions. Take Colorado’s new equal pay law, for example, which not only requires a salary or salary range in job listings for employers with 20 or more employees but bans open-ended salary ranges like “$30,000 and up” or “up to $60,000.”
Listing details like compensation and benefits or being direct about your company culture may be far outside your comfort zone. And guess what? They should be. It’s not always appropriate, and the words you choose matter. Working with a recruiting partner can help you make sense of what to do.
“What you disclose or promote in a job listing isn’t one-size-fits-all,” advises Reese. “Withholding compensation, in particular, can be necessary and expected for dozens of reasons. But a recruiter can help you make the decision and avoid mistakes that will sabotage your chances of getting the applicants you deserve.”
The HT Group fills roles in Temporary Staffing, Executive Search, Technical Recruiting, and Retained Search.