How to approach hiring?

I was sent to Japan to work on recruiting so I’ve been thinking about it quite a bit. I tend to treat everything as a business so when I think I about hiring I go into marketing mode. What I’m curious about what people care about when looking for a job. My own personal experience is pretty non-existent as I’ve only ever applied for one job ever and I’m still here. What are people looking for? if we only have a postcard or a small ad to get their attention what do we include?

At Automattic our pitch seems to center mostly around our amazing work from home policy. While that is pretty great we’ve had people leave and go work back in an office. What did they find at their new job that made that trade off livable? Other things like good salaries, insurance, etc seem to be about the same anywhere. I don’t know if those are things that will get people to leave their current job for you.

I know for me if I ever left Automattic it wouldn’t be for more money or perks. I would only leave if I found a job that was more fun, let me do more of the things that I love. Is fulfilling work something most people are looking for? Is that something we can advertise? If so, how do you communicate that working here would allow you to do something that matters and that you feel is important. I don’t really know.

Maybe I just need more data. It would be interesting to hear from people why they have applied to Automattic and also to hear from people why they left.

For me it was all about the people. I needed a job and I meet some cool people at WordCamp SF 2011 and thought I wanted to work with people like this. The work from home thing was great as it meant I could at Automattic even if I lived in South Dakota but I think I would have been fine working in a office. I wasn’t particularly passionate about the work, back then there were only a handful of positions and it was the only thing I was qualified for. I had no clue how much Automattic paid, I didn’t really care about any of the benefits, so I guess for me it was all about culture. If that is something else people care about and how do we communicate that? Is it possible?

I’ll tell you right now that my time on the Akismet team was the greatest time in my working life. I didn’t necessarily always like what I was doing but the people I was working with were so great I didn’t care. So I’m rambling now but the basic point is I have no clue what to include in our advertisements and such but I’m going to keep trying different things until I find something that works 🙂 .

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