How to Write a Great Job Board Posting

Employment listings written well separate the valuable job boards from the ones that don’t deliver.

Applicants want to learn something about how they'll spend a typical workday.
Applicants want to learn something about how they’ll spend a typical workday.

If you want to host a custom job board on your website, or if you ARE a job board/ career site, you want it to be effective because when companies advertising on the job board get results, you get a stronger revenue stream. By educating companies who use the job board on your website, you help them fill job vacancies, you help job seekers find good jobs, and you help your site remain relevant, sticky, and lucrative. Here are 5 steps involved in creating a great job board posting.

1. Get Into the Right Frame of Mind

Before you write a job description, think about the person you want to respond to it. How does this person spend his or her time? What kinds of things is this person interested in? Give some thought to the star employees you already have. What traits do they have in common that make them a good fit for your company? When you write your job board posting, you want quality over quantity. You’re far better off writing a posting that draws 10 well qualified candidates than one that draws 100 candidates of whom only a few are good candidates.


2. Writing the Job Description

It isn’t easy to write a job description that’s brief enough to make job candidates read it, yet detailed enough that they know what to expect on the job. However, good job postings do just that. Be specific when you describe your future employee’s duties. It’s better to say, “The person fulfilling this position will spend approximately 40% of the work week doing X, and approximately 60% of the work week doing Y,” than “Duties include X and Y.” List key responsibilities in bullet points if at all possible, and keep your list to around five points. Describe each responsibility with an action verb in the present tense, such as, “Analyzes market data,” or “Creates graphics for each week’s feature story.”

3. Be Specific About Candidate Qualifications and Requirements

Don’t say, “Must be a good communicator,” because this is too broad. Be more specific, as in, “Must have written communications skills necessary to write weekly press releases.” Don’t say, “Must be a team player.” Instead say, “Must meet with accounts managers weekly to allocate short term assignments.” Job seekers want to know what they’ll be doing on the job. Knowing that they will be briefing department heads every Monday is much more informative than knowing that they must have good presentation skills.

4. Job Ad Details that Matter

If the job has physical requirements like regular lifting, include them so that those with physical limitations will know up front if they can perform required tasks.
If the job has physical requirements like regular lifting, include them so that those with physical limitations will know up front if they can perform required tasks.

Don’t forget about Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) regulations when writing job board postings. Many job board posting tools alert you if you miss any required EEO categories. If the job has physical requirements, like being able to lift 50 lb. parcels, say so. This information is important for those with physical limitations who need to know if their limitations might keep them from performing their duties. If a background check or drug test is required, state this. Finally, have a clear call to action telling job seekers how to apply, what to include with applications (resumes, references, cover letters, etc.), and what the deadline is for applying. Don’t forget to include necessary contact information.

5. The Final Sanity Check

If you have time, let your job board posting sit overnight and read it afresh the next day. You can often catch mistakes you wouldn’t notice in the thick of the writing process. Read the posting out loud, and correct any convoluted or run-on sentences. Before posting, ask yourself these questions:

  • Would I want to apply for this job?

  • Does the posting tell me exactly how to apply?

  • Is this posting more persuasive than competitor job postings?

As a final check, honestly ask yourself, “If I replaced our company name with a competing company’s name, could they use it as written?” If so, you haven’t differentiated your company from the competition well enough and need to address this before posting.

When you use the next generation in job site technology to draw repeat traffic and monetize your website, you want the companies using your job board to write effective job postings. By helping educate them on writing postings that get results, you benefit not only your own site, but employers using your job board and the applicants looking for employment.

Photo Credits: Ambro /, stockimages /


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