Looking for red flags during your job search saves time. Knowing what to avoid can help you land a satisfying role that you enjoy long-term.
Carefully reading the job description is one of the most effective ways to uncover red flags during your job search. This helps guide you toward roles and companies that provide satisfying, sustainable work. The longer you remain engaged and productive in a position, the more you can reach your goals and advance your career.
Discover the top red flags to look for in the job description during your job search.
Unprofessional Job Title or Language
A job description that includes a cute job title or quirky language is a red flag. Examples such as “word master,” “copywriting guru,” and “content wizard” are unclear in their meaning. This is unhelpful to you as a job seeker.
A lack of professionalism implies the company does not have a clear identity, wants to appeal to a lower maturity level of candidates, or is trying too hard to be fun. Using cute language also suggests the hiring manager does not completely understand the job requirements or that the duties and responsibilities are too great for one employee.
Vague or Long List of Responsibilities
A job description that does not clarify the role’s purpose is a red flag. Using language such as “wearing many hats” but not saying what they are or what the workload is like is a problem.
You must know the job duties and responsibilities and how they benefit the team and organization. Understanding how the position fills the company’s needs and what the expectations help determine whether you are qualified and should apply.
Unclear Schedule Expectations
A job description that does not clarify the work hours is a red flag. You must know when you will be working and whether you may have teammates in international time zones. This impacts when certain work would need to be finished.
If you were to have teammates in time zones a half day ahead of yours, you might need to work late at night to fulfill urgent requests. This makes work-life balance virtually impossible to maintain.
Vast Salary Range
A job description that includes a wide salary range is a red flag. For instance, a salary that may be between $40,000 and $135,000 would fit very different lifestyles. If this diversity cannot be explained, the company may be focused on hiring the best negotiators rather than the most skilled candidates.
Emphasis on Urgency and Stress
A job description focused on speed and time is a red flag. For instance, a “fast-paced environment” or “feverish pace” shows that the company expects the employees to constantly work at an unreasonable pace. You likely would need to be available at all hours, leaving minimal time for yourself.
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