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The most common corporate lingo used by job recruiters

We scoured over 6 million job listings in the U.S. to determine which stale corporate buzzwords companies use the most during the recruitment process.

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Whether you’re a recruiter for a Fortune 500 company or hunting for your dream job, it’s no secret that job postings can be full of cringe-worthy, eyebrow-raising buzzwords. With job listings looking for digital marketing “ninjas” with a “rock star” attitude, comfortable in “work hard, play hard” environments, you start to feel like you’re trapped in a fever dream of corporate jargon. 

Recruiters are resorting to corporate lingo and overused expressions to hook, line, and reel in those with an “entrepreneurial mindset”. Bored yet? 

Searching for the right candidate who fits in culturally and professionally can be a tough task to accomplish, which is why the pros at SimpleTexting wanted to take a deep dive into LinkedIn’s job database to determine which buzzwords are used the most in job listings and which states’ recruiters are the biggest culprits. Keep reading to discover the corporate lingo most commonly used in job ads. 


We compiled a list of 45 of the most “cringe” corporate buzzwords using lists from Forbes, Inc., and the subreddit “r/recruitinghell”. Next, we scraped the language of over 6.6 million U.S. LinkedIn job postings in November 2022 to find out which of the 45 business buzzwords are being used the most per every 1,000 job ads.

Then, we tallied the number of times these buzzwords were being used in job listings by state and industry, to find the states and industries where job hunters are most likely to be recruited with corporate jargon. Lastly, we replicated this process with corporate acronyms. 

The “cringe-y” corporate jargon most commonly used in job ads

Infographic displaying the top corporate jargon used the most in job ads

Often, corporate jargon in job postings reduces the clarity of job descriptions, confuses job hunters, and may discourage top talent from applying to open positions. We looked at over 6.6 million LinkedIn job postings in the U.S. and found that 43% contain corporate jargon! 

The top five corporate buzzwords used in job listings include:

  • Innovator – 82.06 job posts (per 1,000 ads)
  • Dynamic – 59.28 job posts (per 1,000 ads)
  • Team player – 36.76 job posts (per 1,000 ads)
  • Proven track record – 31.35 job posts (per 1,000 ads)
  • Empower – 30.71 job posts (per 1,000 ads)

Descriptors like “thought leader,” “change agent,” and “disruptor” landed the top 20 buzzwords used in job postings, along with common workplace clichés like “think outside the box.” 

Which state is most guilty of using jargon?

U.S. map displaying the states that use corporate jargon the most

Certain states are looking to lure in potential candidates by splattering their job listings with tons of corporate phrases and Silicon Valley-esque clichés. Climbing the corporate ladder isn’t always easy, but this buzzword list should clue you into what potential recruiters hope to spy on your resume and which states are keeping their eye out the most. 

The states where you’ll most likely be recruited with corporate jargon include: 

  • Virginia is the worst offender, featuring corporate jargon in 896 job postings for every 1,000 job ads. 
  • Vermont is the second-worst state, as every 885 job posts out of 1,000 featured stale lingo.
  • North Carolina turned to corporate phrases and terms in every 884 job listings (per 1,000).
  • North Dakota committed corporate jargon overuse in 868 job listings out of 1,000 job ads. 
  • Rounding out the fifth place is Illinois, featuring corporate lingo in 863 job posts for every 1,000 listings. 

Interestingly, states like Vermont and North Dakota have some of the lowest unemployment rates (as of October 2022), which may mean business buzzwords are working out for them!

On the flip side, Arizona and Indiana are the states using corporate jargon the least. Recruiters in these states only used jargon in 575 and 577 job listings (per 1,000 job ads), respectively. Georgia and Michigan follow as the next states least guilty of leaning on corporate lingo in their job postings. 

Which industry is most guilty of using jargon?

Certain industries are making headlines for all the wrong reasons, like overusing cringe-y expressions in their LinkedIn job ads. You’re most likely to find corporate lingo in job postings related to the marketing industry, as over 1,027.41 posts (for every 1,000 job ads) contained words like “thought leader,” “leverage,” and “disruptor”.

Other culprits include the finance (946.75 job posts per 1,000 ads) and technology (679.29 job posts per 1,000 ads) sectors

Getting the lingo right on your resume could be the first step to getting your foot in the door versus a door slammed in your face. While this might be the first step in landing your dream job, bringing a bit of life and personality to your tech resume could also work to your advantage. 

On the other hand, sectors like healthcare use less flowery language in their job posts, which makes sense due to the rising demand for workers needed in this industry. This may mean job recruiters are simply cutting to the bone when it comes to job postings, avoiding trite terms and phrases. 

Need help on the hiring front? No matter which industry you find yourself in, discover how to attract top talent and learn how to cater your job post to industry-specific trends.

The most common corporate acronyms used in job ads

lt: U.S. map displaying the most common corporate acronyms used in job ads

HR professionals can’t seem to get enough of certain acronyms now either, which are making the rounds on job sites like LinkedIn and Indeed. The top three most used acronyms are listed below: 

  • SQL, which stands for “Structured Query Language” was used in 150.80 job posts for every 1,000 listings. 
  • HTML, which is shorthand for “HyperText Markup Language” appeared in every 100.62 job posts (per 1,000 listings). 
  • CRM, which stands for “Customer Relationship Management” was found in every 76.76 job posts (per 1,000 listings). 

Closing thoughts

In this rigorous job market, recruiters need to stand out from the competition to attract qualified applicants, in part by writing job postings that use clear, engaging, and genuine language. 

Sacrificing substance for “style” in job ads can feel off-putting or even untrustworthy to some jobseekers. In your job postings, opt for a clear, authentic summary of roles and responsibilities targeted to your audience and leave the over-used, corporate lingo behind. 

Check out our ultimate text recruiting guide to learn how SMS can help you recruit the best and the brightest. Or, if you’re interested in business texting for your employees, try it for free today. 

Dani Henion
Dani Henion

Dani Henion is the content team lead at SimpleTexting and is continuously looking for ways to make text messaging strategies and tips more accessible to SMBs. When she's not writing or planning new SMS content, you'll find her decorating elaborate sugar cookies or thrifting in Atlanta.

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