An illustration of a job listing template, with a curved pencil, papers, and a green checkmark.


Give a quick elevator pitch on your organization. You may want to include:

  • How long your organization has been in operation
  • A brief description of your mission, as well as the services, programs, or products you offer


Prior to completing this section, you’ll want to have already landed on a job title for the role. When thoughtfully selected, a job title can effectively convey levels of responsibility and experience. Some organizations use manager titles sparingly, only for those who manage work and people. In other organizations and roles, it makes more sense to utilize “manager” when it’s a common title, e.g. Social Media Manager. Either way, get sorted internally first!

Next, draft a one sentence summary of the role so that job seekers can easily get a preview of what’s to come. This is also a good place to note to whom the role will report. Here’s an example from Idealist for a manager role: 

Reporting to the Senior Director of Client Relations, the Community Support Manager manages the community support team, coaching them toward results and growth, and ensures that all Idealist users understand how to best use the site.

Illustration of a dark blue background with doodle for an ad to post a listing on Idealist.


This section should offer a high-level overview of duties. No need to include everything; the details can come later.

Typically, positions at this level vary in terms of responsibilities. If they manage people, they may oversee their team’s work, or may collaborate at a high-level with other colleagues. Generally they’re directly leading work, and this section should reflect that.

In the Idealist example shared above, here’s how we listed some of the responsibilities:

  • Liaise with the Product and Tech teams to report bugs and advocate for site enhancements based on user and staff feedback.
  • Implement ways to engage new organizations through programming and other strategies.
  • Test new features and enhancements before deployment.
  • Provide excellent phone and email support to our community.
  • Organize and document team processes.

Who we’re looking for

It’s important to edit this section with an eye to what you truly need in this candidate, both in terms of skills/traits and experience.

Typically roles at the manager-level require 3-5 years experience in that specific work area, or more, and some amount of management experience (maybe 1-3 years). Depending on the role you’re hiring for, we suggest being flexible about how you consider past experience. For fundraising roles, for example, you could count years in sales as relevant experience for your next Development Manager.

One more thing to consider: only list your must-haves (i.e. skip the nice-to-haves). Nice-to-haves may cause some candidates to opt out of the process, often with implications for race/ethnicity, gender, and more. Take a look at your list of desired skills and experiences, and edit brutally!

Here are a few things you could include in this section:

  • Specific experience that you need in this role. It makes sense that someone in a communications role has written marketing materials before, though consider exactly what it is you’re looking for and how much of it you need.
  • Qualities that would make a candidate successful. For example, an Operations Manager will probably be successful if they are detail- and process-orientated. At the same time, watch out for wanting everyone to have a sense of humor; in most roles, this is not necessary in order to complete a task, but we’ve seen it spring up in descriptions time and again. While that’s nice-to-have, remember what we should do with nice-to-haves!
  • Experience with a kind of technology, like accounting software for a finance manager. Then again, consider the requirement. Do they have to know the exact accounting software already? Or can they train on the job?

Salary and benefits

Even if your state or city doesn’t require a salary range on job postings, we strongly recommend that you include it. This helps communicate what your organization can offer, and gives candidates an better understanding as to whether it’s a fit for them.

You should also document benefits, both the standard (medical, time off, etc.) and anything fun (bring your parakeet-to-work day!) about your organization.

Internal Idealist job postings include a brief snapshot of benefits, things like:

  • Specific paid time off, like vacation, sabbatical leave, time off to volunteer, sick leave, and parental leave
  • Specific health insurances offered, like medical, dental, and vision
  • Home office set-up allowance
  • Reimbursement for learning and wellness

Other important aspects of the role

Here are a few suggestions for what to include in this catch-all section:

  • Work environment. Normally, we’d advise this to be a space where you talk about your organization’s office environment and what candidates can expect in terms of equipment and facilities. However, as of this writing in mid-2022, many organizations are still working remotely. Be specific about what you require of the candidate, whether remote, in-person, or a hybrid work arrangement, and any specific days or times they might need to be at the office or other site.
  • Encouraging diverse applicants. It’s common to see employers encouraging diverse candidates to apply. Sometimes this is for legal compliance for federal contractors, and in that case you should refer to those guidelines. For all organizations aiming to build more equitable teams, we suggest that you post something authentic to your organization culture. In past surveys, job seekers have expressed frustration when this kind of statement seems like “lip service.”
  • Here’s a sample from our friends at The Partnership for Public Service: “The Partnership is an inclusive organization that fosters learning, collaboration and respect. We actively recruit for diversity in our workplace, believing that a range of backgrounds, perspectives and experiences contributes to our mission of revitalizing government. The Partnership for Public Service is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate against any applicants for employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, veteran status, disability; or on any other basis prohibited by law.”
  • How to apply. All parts of a listing should be clear and economic in language, but this section really requires it. Be specific in the materials you require––resume, cover letter, application exercise, work samples, etc.

Remember to check the listing to ensure that the application email address or link is typo-free. Maybe even do a test click just to confirm.

If there’s a date by which the application period will close, include that here as well.


Check out our other job posting templates for all of your organization's open roles!