November 13, 2014

Job Posting Power Hints from Online Dating

Kyle, a Human Resources manager, had been single a few months when his friends encouraged him to meet someone online. Laughing his way through Amy Webb’s TedX talk on how she hacked online dating, he decided to jump in without an algorithm. At the end of his self- imposed 90 day “cyber dating probation period,” Kyle was flabbergasted about how similar online dating was to his experience posting jobs for his employer. It proved good fodder for a fun, anecdotal best practice for his local human resources association. The experience made him a better recruiter, more sensitive to the job seeker point of view, and more wise about life in general. Here’s what he shared with his peers:

A match made in the cloud

Online dating is now the second most popular way people meet someone. The most popular way respondents are getting jobs is through online job boards followed by company websites. The cloud is like the hot nightclub in town. It’s a no brainer, if everyone speaks the same language. Key words are imperative to vet candidates that are “your type”: familiar words; easily understood titles; bullet job details and compensation ranges.

Your Profile = Your Brand

Is your posting mundane? That’s what you will attract. You want a rock star online dating profile just like you would a posting for your perfect dream candidate. Ninety-one percent of candidates believe employment brand plays a key role in their decision whether or not to apply. What makes you attractive? Company culture and reputation for treating employees well.

Good first impressions

Employers can sound as desperate in an online job posting and make the same mistakes as a wounded ex-boyfriend or girlfriend. Candidates can be put off and may not give you a chance to go through entire recruitment experience.


Failure to portray yourself in an accurate and positive light online is one of the biggest barriers to a good fit. From ten-year-old profile photos to embellished company achievements, a lack of truth hinders progress. Allow them to evaluate the real you. If they say, “It’s not you, it’s me,” be ok with it and move on.

Playing Hard to Get

Hurt when someone doesn’t act interested and seems aloof? Job candidates are mistreated every day. They apply with no follow up, thank you or simple acknowledgement of their application. The risk you take is that if you are truly interested in them, they may have already run off into the sunset with someone else.

Be worth waiting…er – working for

A good candidate fit is the equivalent to getting married or other long-term relationship commitment. In the end, the effort and the wait pays off in longevity.

Written by Jim Annis, President/CEO of The Applied Companies, which provide HR solutions for today’s workplace. Celeste Johnson and Tom Miller, Applied’s division directors, contributed to this article.

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