How language changed in tech jobs in 2016, fastest movers: gender identity, systems engineering, security clearance, minimal supervision, written communication; biggest losers: linux, hardware, process improvement, subject matter expert, fast-paced environment
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Tech job language in 2016

Because Textio analyzes tens of millions of job posts with their outcomes every year, the engine is constantly learning the language patterns that make job posts work to attract qualified, diverse candidates.

This creates a rare opportunity for us to measure the way language is changing in real time. Everything I dreamed of in early in my career, on steroids.

Last year we published the top winners and losers in tech jobs in 2015 — the particular phrases that performed overwhelmingly better (or worse!) at the end of the year than they had at the start. We publish interesting data tidbits several times a week, but among them all, this remains one of the most popular blogs in Textio’s history.

We’re excited to bring you the 2016 list. The biggest winner of the year, gender identity, didn’t show up often enough in 2015 to be statistically predictive in any direction. But thanks to the tech industry’s increasing awareness of the complexity of gender and the value of inclusive hiring, equal opportunity statements with explicit callouts for gender identity show up 14 times more often at the end of 2016 than they did at the beginning.

And these jobs are fast fillers. Jobs containing gender identity fill more than three times as fast as they did at the start of the year (and significantly faster than average). Gender identity is not alone, either; sexual orientation and marital status are also big gainers this year. Bottom line: inclusive hiring statements are hot, and getting hotter.

Other big gainers this year include security clearance and minimal supervision. (We love the juxtaposition of these two on the list.)

The losers list contains one veteran from last year. At the end of 2015, jobs containing subject matter expert filled much more slowly than average. At the end of 2016, they’re faring even worse: jobs with this phrase are four times as likely to be the slowest fillers at your company.

Other terms that don’t fare well this year include hardware (remember when IoT brought the internet down for a day?) and Linux (hey, we’re a Mac shop, and based on job post effectiveness, it turns out everyone else is too).

Thanks for another great year, Textios. See you in 2017.

Fastest Movers of 2016

  1. gender identity
  2. systems engineering
  3. security clearance
  4. minimal supervision
  5. written communication

Biggest Losers of 2016

  1. Linux
  2. hardware
  3. process improvement
  4. subject matter expert
  5. fast-paced environment
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