When you’re job hunting, do you ever get that spidey sense that a job sounds too good to be true or that there’s something off about the job posting? You’re probably right! 

When scrolling through job listings, you have to be just as careful to avoid scams and bad jobs as you are when car shopping or browsing Facebook Marketplace. But there are clear signs that indicate a job post is either bogus, a scam, or not going to be a good fit for you. 

In this blog, our One Tech recruiters offer some useful advice on what to watch out for in job postings: 

  1. Spelling & Grammar Errors

  2. Too Many Job Qualification Requirements 

  3. Or No Qualifications Listed at All

  4. Years of Experience Required

  5. Job Description Is Vague

  6. Sensitive Information Is Requested

  7. Unpaid Training Involved

  8. Unspecified Salary

  9. Lack of Company Culture

Before you start filling out an application, look closely at the job listing or description because the role may not actually be the same as the description. 

Look out for these red flags!

1. Spelling & Grammar Errors

Think of it this way: if it’s expected of you to have an error-free resume and cover letter, then the job listing should also be spotless and correct. 

This is especially the case if you are applying for highly technical jobs like those in automation, engineering, software development, and AutoCAD. If a company posts a listing with poor grammar or typos, it probably isn’t a legit job or something questionable is going on. It’s likely not worth your time pursuing.

Few things are worse than getting a position and finding out it isn’t what it says it is, other than finding out a position didn’t even exist. Unfortunately, many companies create fake job listings to get personal information from people. 

Unless you are a freelancer and work with international clients who list English as their second language, avoid applying if you see extensive improper grammar or poor spelling.

2. Too Many Job Qualification Requirements

When applying for positions in the 21st century, it is important to show that you are versatile and can do many things. However, that is only true to a certain extent because you also want to show certain mastery of skills. 

There is only so much time in the day to work, so if you have to be fluent and actively use multiple types of highly specialized software for an entry-level position, look elsewhere. 

Also, consider the salary of a position with a ton of expected qualifications. If a company is requesting you know how to operate a lot of different systems but is only willing to pay at the entry-level position salary, this might be a red flag. 

3. Or No Qualifications Listed at All

On the flip side, sometimes a job posting will have little to no skill, training, or education requirements. This is exceedingly suspicious. Even if a job is not specialized, the listing should still list qualifications. 

If it looks like the job is available for anyone who applies, it’s likely either a scam or a multilevel marketing scheme. Either way, avoid at all costs. 

4. Extensive Years of Experience Required

Similar to jobs requesting numerous qualifications, be skeptical when applying to jobs that require 5+ years of work experience in multiple different trades. 

Applying to these jobs can be a waste of time unless a company is willing to train or compensate you significantly for your work, or you may not be a good fit without the experience. 

Again, if the position requires that much experience but the salary is only at entry level, this is a red flag that the company doesn’t compensate its employees fairly. 

5. Job Description Is Vague

A job posting with a vague description or unclear roles is a red flag for several reasons. Ambiguity in the job description indicates a lack of clarity and organization within the company, which suggests a chaotic work environment where roles and expectations are not well-defined.

It may also suggest that the employer is unsure about what they're looking for in a candidate. This can lead to unrealistic expectations, a mismatch between the job role and the tasks assigned after employment, or even employee burnout. You may be a “multi-purpose” or “catch-all” employee. 

Plus, vague descriptions make it difficult for potential candidates to assess whether they are a good fit for the position, leading to a waste of time and effort for both parties. 

In a well-structured recruitment process, clear and detailed job descriptions are fundamental in attracting the right talent and ensuring a good match between the candidate's skills and the job requirements.

6. Sensitive Information Is Requested

The accepted information requested on an application is your name, contact information, and a resume and cover letter. 

A job posting should not request you apply and provide sensitive info, like your social security number or a copy of your driver’s license. Be highly suspicious of a request like that early on in the hiring process. 

Also, don’t submit any personal information on a website that is lacking SSL Security. Look for the lock in the URL bar to ensure the site is safe to submit on. 

7. Unpaid Training Involved

Learning about unpaid training more often comes up in the interview process but should still be considered a red flag. Unscrupulous companies will sometimes try to get free labor out of people under the guise of unpaid training. 

Whether a company is upfront about this in the job posting or not, take it as a red flag and find out how long this training period lasts. One day might be fine, but a week or more is pushing on unfair practices.

8. Unspecified Salary

While money isn’t everything when finding a job, it is the only thing that puts bread on the table. Planning for job interviews can take a long time, so be skeptical when a job listing doesn’t have a salary range. 

Some positions even list prospective salary ranges, but that changes once the interview starts. Try to mention salary or pay within the first couple of times you communicate with a company to avoid wasting your time.

Keep in mind that job listings that don’t post a salary aren’t all bad. Oftentimes, the company will send you the salary in a follow-up communication after you’ve applied. 

However, if the job posting uses phrases like “unlimited earning potential” or “supplemented by bonuses,” you should be wary of it. 

9. Lack of Company Culture

People rarely go to work and are expected just to sit down and work anymore. It may seem odd to say this, but one thing employers have to understand when hiring new workers is that they are looking for company values to shine through in a listing. 

If you are an employer and really want to draw suitable candidates, be unique and thorough with your listing. Company culture is also signified through the perks and benefits of working for a business. Consider PTO, paid sick leave, maternity leave, weekend work, company retreats, and language use in a job listing as extensions of company culture.

As a job seeker, if you see postings that lack benefits or don’t cast the company in a good light, you should look elsewhere. 

Avoid Red Flags & Secure Your Dream Job With One Tech

To cut down on the time it takes to find your next dream job or to connect with qualified employees, work with One Tech Staffing!

One Tech specializes in connecting employers with skilled people in the engineering, design/CAD drafting, power and utility construction, medical device, automation, and manufacturing fields. 

Contact us today to help with your job search, or check our ever-expanding job board for potential employers and opportunities!