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Related article: Tips for Compliant Interview Processes and Documentation

As a recruiter or HR professional, you’ve got a big responsibility on your hands. Not only must you keep current employees engaged and productive, but you also need to constantly be on the lookout for top talent. Your first step in doing so, after you’ve identified a need within your company, is to post the job. Online job postings are one of the most powerful tools in a recruiter’s arsenal. With just a few clicks, your posting can reach thousands of qualified candidates. Here are some tips to keep your online job posting accessible, timely, and above all, searchable to ensure the right people find it.

1. Define the job. The job description should include the job title, the appropriate department name, and the person to whom the new hire reports. The first paragraph should encapsulate the job expectations, with a bulleted list of duties and responsibilities following. This will be the most important part of your job description, because the information here will determine who finds your job posting in searches. Include specific key words that you know the right person searching for your job will enter, such as entry-level marketing associate, or executive administrative secretary.

2. Refrain from using general, pre-fabricated job descriptions Resist the urge to use a job description you’ve written in the past. Job descriptions are always changing and the language must be accurate according to now, not the past or the future.

3. Get the hiring manager’s input If you’re in HR and you’re writing the job posting, it’s crucial to get in touch with the prospective candidate’s direct report in order to get an accurate and current snapshot of the work environment. Collaborating with the hiring manager will not only lead to capturing a better depiction of the job, but will also help establish a solid rapport with internal teams.

4. Always include key categories Job title, job description, whom the person will be reporting to, length of employment (full-time, part-time, contract), and qualifications, including education and experience. You’ll want to pay special attention to the education and experience portion. Never include a preferred age, gender, or race within your description, and always ensure you’ve got the proper education requirements listed. It’s important not to exclude anyone unless higher education is really an essential component of the job, and always be mindful of Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO). Most online job posting tools will alert you if any of these crucial categories are missing.

5. List background-check requirements, if applicable. Many companies require a background check, and some a drug test, before a candidate can be given the green light. If your company also requires a credit check, be sure and include this (although many companies are eliminating these due to the EEOC deems it discriminatory). Check with your internal legal team.

6. Don’t forget physical requirements There are many excellent candidates with disabilities or veterans that are disabled who will need to know how physical a job can get in order to ask for accommodations. If the job requires long periods of sitting or standing or if heavy lifting is necessary, make sure this is spelled out clearly.

7. Use specific language For example, instead of saying, “must be a good communicator,” try: “must have experience writing persuasive documents.” Always include specific computer programs required instead of saying, “computer literacy a preference.”

8. Emphasize must-haves in your qualifications to avoid an influx of unqualified resumes you absolutely require the person have clocked three years on the job, bold this within the qualifications

9. Run your job description by a legal adviser You’ll want to make sure you’re communicating your requirements without discrimination or prejudice. Most corporations have a business mandate to establish hiring practices that reach candidates regardless of race, color, or national origin. For many, this diversity recruiting process is dictated by EEO regulations. Establishing a diversity recruiting strategy; however, has larger implications than meeting EEO requirements and, in many ways, can help recruiters achieve their business goals.

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