Consider the fact that every job posting you read during your employment search has been systematically and meticulously constructed to attract just the right fitting candidate for the position.  By the time an employer has the made the decision to publish a job posting, there has likely been a great deal of time and thought put into the requirements of the position itself, whether it is a newly created role or one that has been recently vacated.

Therefore, you should give careful deliberation to each job description you read, realizing that nothing has been included randomly or simply by chance. When perusing employment postings, job seekers must remember not to make assumptions or skim too quickly, for that matter.

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Read on for some guidelines to keep mind while scouring the help wanted boards:

Skills match.  Many times, a job seeker will read a posting that sounds like a great opportunity — and for the simple reason that it falls within their general line of work — their first reaction to immediately apply.  However, it’s important that job seekers dissect the list of required skills and be sure they are, at the very least, congruous with their own.  Start with the strongest, most obvious skill matches, and don’t forget to consider the soft skills as well.  A role which requires an analytic or investigative employee may not be a match for the creative, innovative worker, and vice versa.

Culture signs.  It actually is possible to glean a general idea of a company’s culture from their job posting. If the job listing includes the name of the company, then you should find it easy to do your own research via LinkedIn and their company website.  However, in the case of those who omit their company name from the posting, job seekers must try their best to read between the lines.  Some employers will go as far as to include phrases such as “family atmosphere” or “quiet work environment”.  Job postings that convey the size of the organization can also provide you with a window into what you can expect should the job become yours; so apply accordingly.

Keyword identification.  In this data-driven job market, job postings that are not chock full of keywords are far and few between.  However, key descriptive words can easily be used to your advantage.  Work the most applicable ones into the appropriate portions of your resume to increase its chances of being viewed by a hiring manager.

Compatible timelines.  If a job posting strongly indicates the need for the role to be filled immediately, and you do not plan to be available to begin a new job for another month, chances are this may not be the opportunity for you.  While many employers are willing to wait an extra few weeks for the right employee, having certain positions remain open for too long can cost employers valuable resources. Conversely, if an employer advertises a job opening with a more distant availability date, be sure you are willing and able to hold out the allotted time.

Job search


Remaining cognizant of these four basic markers when reading and interpreting job postings will allow you to apply to your best suited jobs with confidence and certainty. 


Fred Coon, CEO


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