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How to Improve Your Job PostS in 7 SURPRSING Ways

Today, you’ll discover how we increased job post applications by 2,000%, outperforming top headhunting firms. This is not just a number - it’s a testament to humanity's desire for meaningful career opportunities.

Gone are the days of mundane, encyclopedia-like job postings. In this article I’m going to walk you through approaches that will elevate your job offer beyond the ordinary. 

Have you ever found yourself puzzled by low response to your job postings, despite offering attractive salaries and benefits? You're not alone. 

The solution lies in connecting with candidates on a deeper level. We will explore how to craft job posts that don't just inform but inspire; that don't just list requirements but create a calling.

The result? Candidates will hit the “Apply Now” quicker than an HR manager spots a typo in a CV.

This isn't about reinventing the wheel. It's about adding overlooked ingredients to the hiring process. 

Stop offering a job, start offering a way of life

Most recruiters are trying hard to differentiate their job offers with perks and salaries. But you know what they are not focusing on? Creating meaning. Don’t fall into the same trap.

It doesn’t matter how well you pay - if you don’t touch candidates’ souls, you’ll never get their attention. If you don’t create meaning, your job offers are exchangeable like everyone else's.

Think about it:

Which are strong brands you like to buy from? Why do you not buy from generic brand for these products?

Chances are, you admire the lifestyle they incorporate.

Offering a way of life makes your company radiate like a newly formed star, gravitationally pulling candidates in. It builds trust and credibility. Candidates identify with your company already before they have talked a single word with you. They are ready to invest time into your recruiting process.

So before we get to the 7 ways to master job postings, I’d like you to know this.

This is not the typical ChatGPT “please rewrite this article” advice you get. These are proven tactics that will even attract the top 1% of impact players you usually never see apply.

Let’s go:

7 surprising ways to improve your job posts

  1. Make your job offer subconsciously irresistible
  2. Make every word tell “We know you”
  3. Embrace humility
  4. Turn your job post into a landing page
  5. Help candidates imagine their new work life
  6. Avoid creating movie-set facades
  7. Advertise special and valuable benefits

1. Make your job offer subconsciously irresistible

Mediocre job postings speak only to the mind, exceptional job postings speak also to the soul. 

To make your job offer connect on a subconscious level you need to understand your employer archetypes and the candidate archetype you are looking for.

Determine your employer archetypes

We live “in the age in which many people crave for a deeper sense of connection to their work”, Margaret Hartwell.

Archetypes provide you with clarity about how to authentically build this connection with meaning and emotion. They help to multiply the power of your messages by connecting with your audience on a subconscious level.

When you infuse your job descriptions with your employer archetypes, you’re already ahead of 99% of all of your competitors.

So before you start heading over to ChatGPT to generate your job posts, do the groundwork first.

There are 12 archetype families and more than 48 positive archetypes at your disposal.

Take 7 minutes and head over to the Employer Archetype Assessement and determine your top 3 archetypes.

When you’re back, let me know. I’ll wait here and have a coffee in the meantime.

Pro Tip: Ask those players in the company that have the largest influence on your company’s culture to take the test (i.e. CXOs, Department Heads,...). This enriches your view on the dominant archetypes in the company.

Define your candidate archetype

“Don’t hire for experience, hire for skills” is what everyone is saying. Sadly, if you want to build a culture that supports your company’s strategy, this is not enough.

Our goal as recruiters is to find people that bring in problem solving approaches that complement the team, or reinforce those that are working brilliantly already.

Every archetype is a problem solving approach. For instance, if your R&D department is not producing results, do an archetype audit. 

If you find team members don’t embrace any of the “Rebel” family archetypes, you know why there is no innovation!

So identify what archetypes are missing or should be reinforced: these are your candidate archetypes.

Here is an example of a job post teaser that addresses the explorer archetype:

Calling all Product Managers

Calling all Product Managers

Join our base camp of intrapreneurial explorers 

You dream of working with a team of impact players to climb the summit of “impossible” and make the world a more green and sustainable place? Mediocre work does not fulfill you? You want to be free and live a life where you're in charge? Then continue reading.

2. Make every word tell: “We know you”

After being clear about your employer and candidate archetype, it’s time to set the foundation for making candidates feel heard, seen and understood.

Put yourself in candidates’ shoes. They have an infinite pool of job offers lining up where 95% make the same claims. 

For candidates an application is a risk. A risk to waste time. A risk that their current employer finds out they are looking for a new employer. So how do they know if your job offer is worth the risk? You have to make an offer that addresses how their life is going to get better.

In the next paragraphs you’ll find how we make sure the job posting tells, we know you:

Address universal motivators

Here are two questions for you:

1/ Do you know what makes work deeply fulfilling for them? 

2/ Are you aware of the conditions that unlock their best performance? 

Misunderstanding or neglecting these leaves potential talent unmoved and uninterested.

Here is how you can get out of the talent desert. 

The oasis? A framework backed by science I call MAP.

It originates from the book “Drive” of the best-selling author Dan Pink that describes what really motivates us.

There are 3 main factors (MAP):

Mastery:

Candidates hunger for growth. They need to see a pathway for development within your company. Show them how you support their aspirations.

Autonomy:

Today's workers insist on being key contributors, not mere cogs in the machine. They need equality and independence. Speak to them at eye level.

Purpose:

Everyone desires a meaningful contribution. When an employee's values align with the company's, work becomes a purposeful mission. Highlight your values and cause.

We've seen remarkable results by ensuring MAP is at the heart of our job ads. 

Highlight how your company will support mastery and autonomy of your future employee.

Also tell candidates how the future looks, they will be contributing to, working with your company.

Pro Tip: If your company does not support growth and autonomy of employees well, you need to first fix this. Otherwise you’ll create false expectations and your work will backfire.

Speak the language of your candidates

For candidates to relate to your job offer, you need to understand how their professional identity was formed. 

What did the education they underwent tell them about what they need to develop to be professionally attractive?

For legal positions we found out that “developing your attorney personality” feels very compelling for many attorneys. We got great results using that. So whenever we craft a job posting, we first do a research to find out what desirable identity do those professionals have that we are looking for.

We listen to podcasts and speeches and look for those desirable special keywords.

3. Embrace humility

Have you noticed that many employers suffer from a big ego? In job postings you can see it when the company is talking or boasting about itself.

The basic storyline of such a job offer goes as follows:

We are great, because we are big and the market leader. Become a cog in our well oiled machine, if you fit into how we’ve built our organization with management theories of the 90ies and fulfill these 100 experience and skill-based requirements, we are happy to consider your application. It can take a couple of months to get back to you, because we are busy being awesome. 

Ok, ok this was quite sarcastic, but you get the point. Only people without options will want to apply.

Mahatma Ghandhi supposedly said “When the ego dies, the soul awakes”. 

To get people really excited about applying, let your ego die and make it about your candidates.

Here is the storyline for a soulful job posting:

We know you are a great person and on your unique exciting journey of life. If you dream of a worklife that looks like [Enter Vision], we can support you building it. We’ll help you grow in a trustful environment. When you work with us you are contributing to [Enter non-greenwashed facts about how your company make the world a better place]. We’d love to learn about you. Feel free to get in touch.

Feels so much better, right?

Here is a 7 point checklist for making the job posting more candidate centric:
  • The post doesn't start with talking about your company
  • The part about your company its really short
  • The post relates with the vision of candidates
  • There is not a list of company values
  • The list of hard requirements is short
  • The tone of voice is inviting, not dismissive
  • It makes the reader feel awsome

To conclude, make it about them, not about you.

4. Turn your job post into a landing page

You know the saying, "Dress for the job you want, not the job you have"? The following applies for employers: dress for the candidate you want, not the candidates you have.

The way you present your job posting can play a major role in the way potential applicants perceive you. Standard text-only job posts are boring and harder to read. 

Turn your job postings into landing pages and deliver the archetypal vibes to attract the right candidates. 

Landingpage Screenshot

Example of a vacancy landingpage

Here are 3 aspects that will help you make your 

That means your job postings should not be formatted as plain texts. 

Integrate archetypal imagery and colors

“An image says more than 1000 words” is eternally true. 

Carefully select imagery that supports communicating your values. 

Adjust the shapes, colors and style to your dominant archetypes.

Take a look at your brand archetype cards for inspiration.

Make your tone of voice special and consistent

Your tone of voice is essential for creating the intended vibe. 

The words you select need to be consistent with the values you want to portray. Again, you can use your archetype profiles to fine tune your wording.

If you use AI to write your copy, feed it with instructions about your tone of voice.

Here is an example:

Tone of Voice: Aim for a tone that is direct, engaging, empathetic, and positive, resonating with individuals who may be experiencing challenges in their work. Talk like a humanist and take a humanist perspective. 

Style: Make the writing style clear and straightforward, using common language to discuss complex issues. Employ questions to provoke thought and encourage interaction. Include pattern interrupts to motivate the reader to continue reading.

Whenever I use AI to write the copy I always go through the results and adjust them to my tone of voice.

Pro Tip: Stay away from jargon. Jargon is what everyone uses, so you are not sticking out when using it, too. Jargon kills your vibe.

Leverage social proof

Humans are social animals. If something turned out to be good for someone else, we tend to assume it will be good for us as well (even if it isn’t).

We can actively use this “social proof” to gain trust and credibility of what we say. 

But what is social proof exactly?

To get more clarity, I put together 6 employer social proof types for you:

  1. 1
    Employee-generated content
  2. 2
    Awards and recognitions
  3. 3
    Leadership endorsements
  4. 4
    Partnerships with reputable brands
  5. 5
    Industry expert features
  6. 6
    Employer success metrics (i.e. satisfaction, retention)

Enriching your job postings with at least 3 trust signals will boost your conversion rates significantly.

Now we are going to dive into a special job that your vacancy landing page should accomplish:

5. Help candidates imagine their new work life

Stimulating the imagination of candidates is like a golden ticket to multiplying the gravitational pull that job posting visitors experience towards the apply button.

When people envision how it feels, sounds, looks and smells like to work at your organization, they already develop a relationship. And if values match, candidates then already start identifying with your company - isn’t that amazing?

Here are 3 things that facilitate dreaming

Leaders’ story quotes

Often top level leaders don’t appear in recruiting until the late interview stages. That’s a big blunder.

When leaders talk, candidates listen very carefully - they know this is a person that is influencing the organization’s culture and their potential job heavily.

What works very well, is when we include leaders’ personal quotes that address common employee pain points. 

Here is one that we used to make clear, that we take work life harmony seriously.

“Having worked at crappy workplaces where my health deteriorated, I decided to do things differently as an entrepreneur. At Monetizing Individuality we put wellness before profits.”

Founder, Monetizing Individuality

So when we start a new project, I’d always like to know the background stories of the leaders that inform about why the culture is like it is.

This is talent attraction gold.

Employee testimonials

According to a Dixa study, 93% of customers first check online reviews before they buy consumer products. 

Potential candidates demand the same information. They could check your company profile on Kununu and Google for more information about your company. 

But since we live in the age of goldfish attention spans, it’s better to present them reviews right away in the job posting. 

These testimonials serve to create trust and credibility. They underline that what you claim is true. The more specific and personal your employee testimonials are, the more powerful.

Ask immediate co-workers of the vacancy to talk about what they love about leadership, comradery and their work. Also ask them to tell you what they are working on improving in the company. 

Here are two new text-based examples:

[FirstName LastName], the COO, in the company, helped me transition from a technical role to a managerial position, guiding me through each step with practical advice and support.

As a new father, I was looking for a job with flexibility. [CompanyName] offered me a four-day workweek and the possibility to leave in case of an emergency any time, which has been a lifesaver for managing childcare and my career.

Always address one pain point in each testimonial.

Also imagine creating video testimonials. They’ll have an even stronger impact.

Feature the life of employees

Until now we’ve talked about how to make candidates imagine their potential new work. An important thing is still missing: What do your employees do when they are not working?

People often think of themselves as different, sometimes even as weirdos. And yes, everyone of us does things that seem weird to others. I sometimes like to start dancing and twerking in the supermarket. My wife is not a fan, but I love it (sorry, not sorry).

When we show what a diverse range of things our people are up to in their spare time, we signal that we cherish individuality. As a consequence potential candidates feel they will less likely be judged, reducing the emotional risk of exposing yourself to a recruiting process.

Ask employees for pictures and videos of the activities they love to do outside of work. 

6. Avoid creating movie-set facades 

Remember the old movie-sets of villages in the wild west? You know the ones where you looked behind the facades, there was no house? Don’t do this with job posts. 

Never underplay challenges and never set unrealistic expectations. 

If you do, it will backfire:

  • You waste time
  • Low employee retention
  • Candidates waste time
  • Bad word of mouth
  • Employer brand image suffers

See job postings also as a tool that helps you cut the chaff from the wheat. 

Let’s talk about “impact players” for a moment. That’s how I like to call the creme de la creme of employees. The movers, the innovators, the creators. The ones that we all would love to have in our companies en masse. 

What do they want from an employer? They don’t want to join a company in which everything is already perfect. They want to work at a company where they can have the most impact.

So what do you need to convince them to come? 

Here is the essential requirement:

You need to have a 100% commitment to creating positive leadership practises. That means your company has a clear leadership development plan and an allocated budget for leadership and culture building coaches.

Aside from your 100% commitment to positive leadership, I urge you to communicate honestly what lifestyle you offer and what aspirations you have as an employer:

1. Talk about the company’s growth and improvement areas:

Talk about how the company is growing and evolving. If there are known challenges, frame them as areas of ongoing improvement and how the candidate can contribute to this process.

2. Set realistic expectations:

Be upfront about the day-to-day realities of the role. If the job involves challenges or routine tasks, mention these in a constructive way.

3. Be specific about role requirements:

Be clear about the skills and experience required, and especially address the values they should live.

4. Be honest about work-life harmony:

Provide a truthful depiction of work-life balance within the role and company.

5. Mention support and resources available for challenges:

Highlight the support systems in place for employees to manage work challenges, such as mentorship programs, training, or team collaboration.

6. Reflect company values and culture accurately:

Ensure that the job description accurately reflects the company's values and culture without exaggeration.

7. Invite questions and clarifications:

Encourage candidates to ask questions or seek clarifications during the application process to ensure they have a clear understanding of the role.

7. Advertise special and valuable benefits only

This is a sad mistake that you see in job posts all the time: advertising pseudo benefits or benefits that everyone else offers as well.

As an employer you want to be refreshingly different!

Here is a list of benefits to avoid:

😣 Hot drinks
😣 Open doors
😣 Fruit basket
😣 Casual fridays
😣 Flat hierarchies
😣 Parking spaces
😣 Water dispenser
😣 Company parties
😣 Individual training
😝 Timely salary payment
😣 Common coffee breaks
😣 Good public transport connections

If your office has a water dispenser or a fruit basket? Great! But, don’t advertise it. This is so standard that it’s not in the slightest noteworthy. At the worst, it raises the question, if you charge employees for fresh air?

Then there are what I call “pseudo” benefits: i.e. common coffee breaks, timely salary payment. 

Never advertise with standard or pseudo benefits: It makes readers feel you have nothing to offer, so you need to advertise something that’s invaluable or made up.

If you feel the pressure to use any of these benefits, stop. Focus on creating more value with the power of archetypes, instead.

Start improving your job posts today

As we’ve explored, elevating your job posts is not about beating your competition by offering more and more benefits. It's about creating a narrative that resonates with your ideal candidates, making your offer not just a job, but a lifestyle.

Let's recap:

Transform your job postings from mere announcements into compelling stories that speak to the soul of your ideal candidates. Focus on making each word count, addressing candidate motivations, and connecting candidates’ life journeys to your unique company culture.

Remember, every job post is an opportunity to attract 'impact players' – the ones who can truly make a difference in your organization. So, inject your posts with meaning, and watch as the quality and quantity of your applicants soars.

Now, go ahead and start transforming your job postings. Watch as they become not just openings, but gateways to exciting, fulfilling careers.

Whenever you're ready, here are 2 ways we can help:
  1. 1
    Integral Recruitment Consulting & Service: Win impact players and create high-impact teams
  2. 2
    Employer Brand Archetype Assessment (free): Take 6 minutes to answer 16 questions and you'll immediately get your individual employer archetype profile.
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