Women Are More Selective Job Seekers Than Men

As many of you know, last Friday was National Women’s day. Amidst all of the LI posts, our colleague Brian came across an interesting article detailing how women and men search for jobs differently.

As it turns out, women are about 20% more “selective” than men when it comes to which jobs they will apply to. It’s probably not too surprising that women are 16 – 18% more likely to land a job, as a result of applying to less jobs which are a better fit for their goals and experience.

So what does this mean? It means the spray and pray method of applying to jobs is not necessarily the most successful. If you are searching for a new job, you need to make sure you read the job postings and tailor your CV to that specific position. This is of course more and more relevant as you move up the chain into the most selective jobs.

One quick note, as Wayne Gretzky said, you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. So, being more selective is a double edged sword. That said, we see a trend more and more of candidates only pursuing the opportunities that strike their fancy the most.

What This Means For Companies

Beyond how these stats relate to the job seeker, I also think this should send a message to employers.

If a job seeker is “selective,” this means they are doing their research. So, that means if you don’t have information available in the places they are looking, then you are missing out on candidates who are being thoughtful about their career. In this study, that implies a disproportionate amount of female applicants won’t apply.

It also made me think if the spray and pray method doesn’t work for candidates, why do we think it works for companies? If your only method of finding candidates is by pushing stale, boring jobs postings out to job boards, you’re in for a world of hurt. If you want candidates to go deep and customize, then you need to go deep and customize. 

My advice: start making content that helps tell your company story and then strategically put that content in places that your candidates will see it. Make it easier for candidates to learn about your company and dig a little deeper to try and figure out where they are hanging out.

Phil Strazzulla

Phil Strazzulla

Founder at NextWave Hire
Phil is a founder of NextWave Hire.Previously, he was a VC at Bessemer.Phil is a self taught programmer and business nerd who studied at NYU and Harvard Business School.
Phil Strazzulla