How Long Do Job Seekers Spend Reading Job Postings?

May 07, 2013

A sample of job seekers were asked how long they spend reading job descriptions before deciding whether to pursue them or not.

  • 44% claimed they spent between one and five minutes
  • Another 19% said they spent 10 minutes.

Then those same job seekers were followed using “eye-tracking software” that showed how long they actually spent with each job description.

  • Candidates spent 49.7 seconds before dismissing a job as poor fit
  • They also spent only 76.7 (1min 17sec) seconds with a posting that matched their skills and interest

The job posting has approximately one minute to convey the information required and grab candidate attention and interest.

Some additional findings of interest include:

  • Candidates spend a lot more time reading the job description and company description than reading the actual job requirements
  • Their eyes frequently skimmed over the job description, not often reading the whole thing in its entirety

When developing your ad, short, direct bullet points will enhance the job sell opportunity, long or over extended job postings will not be read in full and job posting fatigue will lead to less people applying.