As a startup, small business, or hiring manager, narrowing down the type of candidate you need for a new or open position is challenging.

What do you need in a new employee? You need to be able to answer this question thoroughly before you begin considering applicants.

One of the first things you need to do is create a list of the qualifications, skills, education, and experience you’re seeking, and condense those key attributes onto a job ad or job post.

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Creating an effective job post will help decrease the number of applicants who apply. On average, 118-120 job seekers apply to a job posting, but only 20% receive an interview.

Related: What You Need to Include in Your Screening Process

You’ll use these as guidelines while writing and preparing your job post for internships, temp positions, short term contract work, and full-time positions. Answer the following questions as you create your list:

  • What are the duties and responsibilities of the job role? Start with broad categories and then move into more specific explanations.

Example: Will assist editorial department with weekly newsletter and blog posts. Duties include proofreading, editing copy, writing two blog posts a week, and creating the weekly newsletter layout.

  • Are there any pre-requisites for the role? Which requirements are mandatory and which are desired?

Example: Must have a bachelor’s in English, Journalism, Communications, or a related field. Master’s degree preferred, but not required.

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  • Did you specify you’re an Equal Opportunity Employer? Did you clarify you do not guarantee or promise applicants employment?
  • Does any of your language indicate candidate preferences based on age, gender, race, or any other social identities?

Example: Do not write, “We’re seeking a hardworking petite and young female employee.” Instead, write “We’re seeking hardworking candidates who are ambitious, goal-oriented, and self-motivated.”

Now that you have several questions to answer and things to check off your list, write your job ad. Have two or three extra pairs of eyes proofread it before submitting to ensure there aren’t any typos or potentially discriminatory phrases.

Happy job posting!


What are your tips for creating job posts? Do you have a process you follow every time?


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