How Small Businesses Can Encourage Job Seekers to Apply to Open Jobs

Four out of five people go online when searching for a job, and 85 percent of people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. In other words, reviews matter.

In fact, the information job seekers glean from Glassdoor often comes out during interviews.

“Almost all of our candidates mention our Glassdoor page and/or reviews during their interviews,” says Ryan O’Neil, founder of Curate, a five-person software company. “They’ve said that based on what they’ve seen on Glassdoor, they love how people love our company.”

But getting people to apply may require some work. To increase your chances, try the following techniques:

1. Emphasize your perks.

As a small business, it can seem tough to compete with larger businesses that may be able to pay more or offer better benefits. But your company is attractive in ways you may never have thought of. To remain competitive, emphasize the perks of working at a small business, such as:

  • Flexible working hours
  • Closer relationships with leaders
  • Being able to influence the direction and success of the business
  • More say in how you operate
  • A tight-knit team

For job seekers tired of just being another face in the crowd, these perks could outweigh other factors.

And remember—you don’t just have to write about these benefits. Paint a vivid picture of your company’s culture with, well, pictures (and videos) featuring your team. For example, finder has over 20 photos of their modern office, delicious snacks, close-knit team, and fun events like trick-or-treating for Halloween:

finder Glassdoor profile office photos

2. Play around with the language in your job description.

Be thoughtful about how you frame your open roles. Just one bullet point could make or break a candidate’s willingness to apply. When writing a job description, remember these best practices:

Use “you” statements.

Help candidates envision what it’ll be like working in this role and contributing to your business. It’s also important to focus on the opportunity, not the immediate task at hand.

  • Instead of saying: “This person will report to the CEO and will be tasked with customer service.”
  • Say this: “In this role, you’ll report to the CEO, and work with the team to create better experiences for our customers.”

Remove gender bias.

Be mindful of keeping titles and job descriptions gender neutral. Words that may seem harmless, like “superhero” and “ninja,” are often considered masculine terms and can also make it less likely for qualified candidates to discover your role in their job search.

Aim for neutral, descriptive titles like “project manager” or “developer.” Diverse teams help your business thrive, so it’s important to encourage everyone to apply.

Keep A/B testing.

You never know which details will attract your ideal candidate, so if you’re having trouble filling a role, experiment with different titles and descriptions.

For example, if the candidates applying for your “marketing specialist” job are too junior, try changing the title to “marketing manager” and adjust the years of experience and qualifications.

3. Test out targeted ad campaigns on Glassdoor.

Targeted ads have a few huge benefits. In addition to advertising your jobs on competitors’ profiles (and preventing them from advertising on yours), you can make sure your ideal candidates see your open positions by targeting job searchers by location, industry, and role.

Before you begin posting and promoting jobs, do these three things:

Set a goal so you know whether your campaigns are working and worth repeating.

Is your goal to get your cost-per-hire under a certain amount? Hire as soon as possible? Retain employees for at least a year? Make your goal specific, like “I want to use Glassdoor to fill my three most critical roles within two months for under $5,000.” That way it’s easier to determine whether it was a success.

Keep track of important numbers.

This can include your:

Compare campaigns and recruiting methods to see which works best for your business.

Remember to consider the entire process when you compare campaigns and methods. If one ad got 100 applicants to apply, but only five were worth talking to, it might not be as effective as you thought.

4. Keep improving your recruiting and interview process.

If you get loads of applications but have trouble actually hiring people, something is up. Consider spending time on the following things to see if they make a difference:

Always follow up.

When a candidate writes a negative review on Glassdoor about their interview experience with a company, it’s often to complain about never hearing back. Not following up can hurt a company’s chances of hiring quality candidates. So if a job seeker took the time to apply, don’t ghost them.

Even if you’re not interested, let them know so they can move on—it only takes a minute to send a quick email. Copy these email templates so you can quickly respond in a variety of situations. And if you are interested, don’t take forever to respond. Chances are, other companies are interested as well.

Make sure interviewers are prepared.

The interview is one of the candidate’s first impressions of your business, and it can impact how they’ll review their experience on Glassdoor. Make sure everyone on the interview panel is prepped, has read the job description and candidate’s resume, has personalized questions, and arrives on time.

To keep everyone on the same page, consider creating a shareable document that outlines the role along with how each candidate should be assessed.

Ask better questions.

To weed out candidates who aren’t a good fit, ask questions like:

– Specifically, why are you interested in joining the team?

– What makes you a good fit for this role?

– Describe the type of work environment that makes you the most productive.

– What are the most positive parts of your current job, or the last position you held before coming to this interview?

– What is the most important thing that needs to be present at work for you to be successful?

– What have you learned about us that makes you stoked to join the team?

If the candidate researched your company, (Glassdoor allows past interviewees to share what questions they were asked), they should be able to share why they’re the right person for your team.

Learn More

The Ultimate Guide to Glassdoor for Small Business Owners