To attract job seekers to an open position you need a great job description and a great job posting. You may be scratching your head thinking, “Aren’t these the same thing?” They’re not. While they are very similar, and one includes the other, the main objectives for a job description and a job posting are completely different and companies need to understand their distinctions to attract the best candidates.

Job Description vs. Job Posting

A job description is really what it sounds like—a detailed description of a job or position at your company. A job posting is the listing of that job description as an ad on your website or job boards. The biggest difference between a description and listing is a description is used internally and for posting externally. For example, when you write a job description you describe the position to the person who may apply for it, as well as to managers and your entire company. It is used for HR purposes and even compensation. When that description is used as a job posting, it becomes a marketing tool like a job ad. While a job posting will include the job description (or at least some portions of it), its focus is to attract top candidates to your open position.

How to Write a Great Job Description

As an internal document, a job description needs to contain all the necessary information about the position. It doesn’t need to be flashy; instead, it should be more informative.

A good job description should include:

  • Position overview: A short explanation of the position’s purpose and its responsibilities.
  • Key duties and responsibilities: Detail all of the actions critical to the position’s success.
  • Tools and skills necessary: Any knowledge the employee must have or develop to perform the work.
  • Physical demands: Specify if the position requires lifting, standing or sitting for long periods of time.
  • Qualifications: Certifications, years of experience, degrees or education level required for the position.
  • Scheduling requirements: State if the position requires overtime, weekend work or needs to be performed during normal business hours.
  • Levels of authority and supervision: Mention who the position reports to and/or chain of command.

Importance of a Job Description in Terms of HR

A detailed job description does more than just recruit candidates. HR uses these formal documents to conduct performance reviews as well as to determine compensation levels, succession planning and development—and even to maintain compliance. For example, if an employee is failing at a specific part of their job, a manager can refer to the job description to see if the employee’s responsibilities have changed since they started. Or when considering development opportunities, a job description can quickly tell a manager what skills or certifications are necessary to perform a particular position. Job descriptions can also signal managers of any skills gaps as companies can easily categorize employees to see the number of employees in each department.

How to Write a Great Job Posting

Writing a great job posting involves taking your formal job description and turning it into something that will attract the attention of job seekers. While you want to incorporate design elements like video, images, links, map and testimonials, the posting also needs to include information that attracts the right candidate.

Along with outlining the positions specific details, like critical duties and responsibilities, a job posting should also include:

  • An attention-grabbing headline or position description.
  • Direct language that doesn’t leave room for applicants to think they might get the job even if they don’t meet the requirements.
  • An example of what a typical workday or workweek will look like, clarifying expectations for potential applicants.
  • Your company’s culture, including highlights about your values and what you offer your employees.
  • Inclusive pronouns, avoiding the use of all-male pronouns.


Why Awesome Job Postings Attract Top Talent

An awesome job posting is the first step to receiving a great resume. Often companies waste time sorting through stacks of applications because their job posting doesn’t include the right information. When your job posting includes specific information about your company and culture, along with a detailed list of the responsibilities and qualifications a job description provides, you will attract candidates with a better understanding of what the position requires.

attract top talent

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

A great job description is just one part of the recruitment process. Your job description and job posting work in tandem with an easy application process, candidate-focused interviews and unique company benefits to provide a positive candidate experience. 

A positive candidate experience influences both the function of attracting top talent and that of retaining them to empower your team. When you use specialized tools for recruiting, finding team members who are driven, skilled and excited for success will be strong contributors as you watch your organization accomplish its goals. 

Arcoro’s modular Applicant Tracking System allows you to publish your job posting to leading national and niche boards and social media sites with a couple of clicks in our which is designed to automate compliance with federal hiring regulations. Its email templates and screening helps you quickly sort through any unqualified candidates and review applications in batches. Candidates will appreciate how easy it is to use since they can apply on their mobile devices with no login required, improving the candidate experience. Contact us today to see how it can transform your recruiting process.