Ask These 10 Questions Before You Post Your Next Job Description
Getting ready to post a new job online? Ask yourself these 10 questions first!
1. Where Should I Post the Position?
If you haven’t taken the time to think critically about where you want to post your job, then take your finger off of the trigger. There are hundreds of job sites out there, and it’s easy to fire off ads on two or three big ones. However, posting on a huge national job board like LinkedIn isn’t always your best option. Bigger boards will ensure a higher quantity of responses, but you will have to spend a great deal of time filtering through the unqualified applicants. Also search for niche job boards that carry the specialties, qualifications, or job titles that you’re after. Utilizing these will decrease the number of applicants you have, but almost always increases their quality.
The boards you choose will depend heavily on who you’re hiring. Take a look at the qualifications you require, and use them to guide your choice. Studies show that most people on the hunt for new jobs are often loyal to 1-3 specific job boards, and you don’t want to alienate yourself from potential fits. Limit yourself to 3 posting, and observe where you get the best results. Those are the kinds of job boards you’ll want to use in the future.
2. How Quickly Do I Need to Fill the Position?
Time is a huge factor in anyone’s hiring process. Top candidates are off the market in a couple of weeks, while many job postings remain active for a few months. How long are you willing to wait to find a match? The answer to this question will guide how strict you are about requirements, how quickly you plan to respond to candidates, and whether you should actively recruit for a position or wait for applicants.
If you need a high-level or complicated placement asap, consider using an external recruiter to handle some or all of the recruiting process. Recruiters often have connections and industry expertise that an internal team does not, and can help you find a great pool of candidates over the course of a couple of weeks.
3.Do I Need to Look Outside of My Current Connections?
Before you dive into the crowded world of online recruitment, make sure you aren’t overlooking anyone in your organization’s circle that fits the bill. Promoting from within an organization is a great way to keep your employees happy and make sure that you keep your culture strong.
Word-of-mouth and referrals from employees are another great way to find people that fit into your current culture. Ask members of the team with the open position for suggested candidates, and seriously consider their recommendations. Have employees post to their own social media accounts that you have an open position to gain access to their peer networks as well.
4. What Brand Message am I Trying to Get Across?
Employer branding is very important in today’s job market. You are trying to attract top candidates, and you want to portray your organization as a place they remain loyal to long-term. What does your brand offer that is special? Showcase it through your job description- but not through the title. Are you laid-back? Use your verbiage in the ad to convey a casual atmosphere. Is the team driven by problem solving? Ask analytical questions in the application. Make sure that you portray your culture accurately, and the good fits will find you.
5. Are All of These Qualifications Necessary?
If the job description you’ve written contains more than six necessary qualifications, then you are asking for too much. Don’t scare away perfectly good applicants by narrowing your search to a small pool of over-qualified applicants that might not exist. Limit yourself to 5-6 requirements, and consult the high-performers in the space to make sure you are highlighting the most important elements of a good employee.
You can still keep an eye out for those unicorns. Include up to 5 other “nice-to-have” qualifications that will help narrow down your shortlist, but be wary of overwhelming your audience. Above all, don’t forget that attracting the best isn’t only about quantifiable qualifications. Interview a range of people with varying qualifications, and ask yourself who fits best in the role and in the company.
6. How Will We Score Applicants’ Resumes & Applications?
As you’re crafting your job description, keep your scoring mechanisms in mind. Sit down with the hiring team, and make a concrete plan for how you are going to weigh experience, qualifications, and answers to application questions. Make sure the highest weighted elements are highlighted in the posting to help avoid having to sift through low-scoring applicants.
7. What Were the Weaknesses of the Last Person Who Had this Position?
This is a question that should weigh on your mind throughout the entire hiring process. Bringing in new employees is a chance to improve even the best work environment. Ask for honest feedback from the team, from peers, and during the current employee’s exit interview. Use upbeat language in the description to solve those weaknesses- “Attention to detail is a plus!” or “We love creative thinkers!”
If this is a new position, think long and hard about what will make someone extra successful in the role. What traits will help onboard them quicker, or what soft skills will help them succeed long term? Use these to craft your messaging.
8. What Are the Weaknesses of the Team?
Nobody and no team is perfect. Do an honest assessment of what is missing from the current group dynamic and try to supplement those weaknesses with who you hire. The last thing you want is a dysfunctional or sluggish work environment. This will lead to increased employee turnover and hurt your employer brand. Ask the team, their leader, and other employees that interact with them and figure out the best soft-skills to look for in a new hire.
9. What Will Make People Want to Share This?
There are roughly 3 million active job postings on LinkedIn at any given time. Your job is to cut through all of that clutter and speak directly to your ideal audience. One of the best was to do so is to make your job description memorable. An engaging post is more likely to garner attention, attract referrals, and gain shares across a broad network. There are no rules that say a job description has to look or feel a certain way. Consider what creative ways you can let your company’s culture shine through, and don’t be afraid to use them.
10. We Have Applicants, Now What?
Once the job is posted and starts gaining traction, it can be easy to get bogged down by the pool of applicants coming in. Starting out of the gate, you need to make sure that your team is clear on who will own the process and the final decision, and rely on them for instruction. You’ve established a scoring mechanism, but it’s important to also establish a clear line of internal communication so you can more efficiently reject candidates or move them along in the process. There are a lot of moving parts in the interview process, so consider investing in an Applicant Tracking System to help manage the process.
Have you defined what your interview rounds will look like? Make sure you set the standards here early on in the process so that you can quickly move applicants through the pipeline and find the right fit quickly.
Still unsure if your job description will help you find someone worth hiring? Go on the offensive by hiring 1H’s team of expert, on-demand recruiters to help attract and hire your next employee.