Writing effective job postings

Partly free advertising for my pals at TheLadders and partly because they give some good advice about writing job postings (not to be confused with job descriptions...there's a subtle difference). Pasted with their permission, of course.  


If you are a job seeker, you could pretty much substitute the word "resume" for "posting" in many of the recommendations below. There's a little yin-yang thing going on there. Recruiter or job seeker, they are worth checking out.


Hello Heather,

Here at RecruitLadder, we know you have one thing on your mind the first week in January: finding the perfect candidates for your $100k+ positions! So, we’ve put together a few tips to make sure your job postings are as effective as possible.

1. Save your job postings in Microsoft Word before you post them on our site. This way, you can post jobs whenever it’s convenient for you and will always have your most frequently used postings on hand.

2. Start strong with an “attention grabber” or “hook” to pique candidates’ interest and entice them to read further. Successful recruiters on TheLadders.com swear by this format:

1.     “Hook”

2.     Company Description

3.     Detailed Job Description

4.     Bulleted List of Application Requirements

5.     List of Qualities that are Preferred but Not Required

6.     Bolded List of “Deal Breakers” or “Candidates Need Not Apply If…”

3. Identify your goal. Is your objective to reach a broad audience and receive as many applications as possible? Write a more general job description that could appeal to job seekers across functions. Or, would you rather receive a few targeted applications? Be specific and use strong language which will identify and zero–in on your ideal candidate.

4. Choose your words carefully. The verbiage you use in your job descriptions dictates who will apply for your positions. Choose powerful, attractive words when writing your job description. Be sure to use the appropriate level of tone, commensurate to the candidates you’re seeking.

5. Be detailed. The more information you present about the position and hiring company, the more targeted responses you’ll receive. Presenting an attractive company description will encourage candidates to apply to your position.

If you need to keep the hiring company confidential, be sure to include a descriptive Company Headline like “Fortune 500 Pharmaceuticals” or “Prominent International Bank”. Or, if the job doesn’t require a specific location, label it “Virtual / Travel” to ensure that your job is seen by all interested candidates.

Place the position’s specific requirements in the job description to encourage just those who are qualified for this job to apply, so you’ll only hear from the perfect candidates!

Remember: a good job description contains the necessary information. A great job description gives job seekers every bit of information they need to decide whether or not they’re right for the position.

6. Highlight key information. Don’t be afraid to use bolding to call out your most specific requirements and guidelines for application. Place your application instructions and strict requirements at the end of your job description, right above the “apply” button -- make it impossible for job seekers to miss.

Now that you have the tips, get out there and start posting your $100k+ positions and searching for great candidates in our database!

Recruiter Relations Team

PS Learn more about RecruitLadder Premium! Join us for a complimentary, informational product tour this Thursday, January 3rd at 2 pm EST. Register Now

Comments (2)

  1. stone says:

    Our friend at Microsoft, Heather Hamilton, likes what we have to say about effective job postings….

  2. Simone says:

    These are really useful. There is so much emphasis on candidates sending through resumes with typos and how these discredit the person in the eyes of the recruiter. In the same sense a job ad can do the same for the company. Why would you go work for a company where they do not pay enough attention to the recruitment process to do a spell check on the job ad.


Skip to main content