A job advert is essentially a sales tool to attract top talent. Using the same principles of marketing, your job advert will need to be drafted with your audience in mind, it will need to sell your business and highlight the benefits. A great job advert is both clear and concise and engages the audience. Dont mistake a job advert with a job description – the job description can be much more detailed, whereas your job advert draws attention.
Research by Ladders, found the average time to decide on the suitability of a position was 49.7 seconds when the job was not a fit, and 76.7 seconds when it was. Therefore, spending time to draft an engaging job advert is vital to find potential candidates that are a good fit for your role.
The anatomy of a great job advert:
1. Job title
This is your first opportunity to capture attention of potential recruits. It should clearly decripe the job role to enable readers to quickly assess their suitability for the role. Avoid using internal job titles or acronyms that are specific to your business, use industry-standard titles. Most importantly make sure it is searchable, use terms that your ideal candidate would search for.
2. Key information
Use this section to include key details that quickly convey important information to potential candidates. Include the salary band to avoid wasting candidates time. Describe the level of the role; is it an entry-level or a senior position, this will enable candidates to quickly understand if the role is suitable. Note the location of the role, and whether it is an office-based role, work from home position, or even flexible working. It is also an idea to include the application deadline here, this will help the potential candidate understand the urgency.
3. Company overview
Give the potential candidate a brief overview of the business. Don’t use standard marketing copy – make it relatable to each role. This section should engage the potential candidate, so make it short and snappy whilst ensuring it is informative. Include your businesses vision and mission statements to demonstrate your purpose. Explain your position in the market; are you an exciting start-up or an established market leader.
4. Role introduction
Provide a short introduction to the role, explaining the key activities. Include the function of the role, who they will be working closely with, what is the main objectives of the role? If this is a new role in the business, state that here. Try to focus on why the potential candidate should be interested in the role, describe the opportunities the role brings.
Outline specific tasks that the role would include. What does a day in the role look like? List the day-to-day tasks that potential candidates would be required to complete. Too much information can be overwhelming, so stick to the main priorities and relate them to the overall company objective. Use bullet points to break up text.
6. Who you are looking for
In this section provide the criteria and qualities you are looking for in a potential candidate. Specify specific skills and abilities you are seeking. Include your ideal level of experience, but try not to alienate recruits who could be a good fit, for example, if you are looking for a recent graduate, don’t specify that you need 5 years of relevant industry experience. If you require qualifications in order to fulfill the role to a high standard, state that here, but be realistic and don’t overestimate what is required to be successful in the role. You can also use this section to outline character traits that would fit well in your organisation – this is also an opportunity to demonstrate the values and culture within the business so that potential candidates can establish if they would be a good fit.
7. Benefits and perks
More than ever, candidates what to know what’s in it for them. It’s not just about the money, increasingly candidates are interested in how their employers can support them in a work-life balance. Do you offer any unique benefits? Do you have any schemes in place to support wellbeing? Are you offering learning and training opportunities? The job advert needs to sell the benefits to potential candidates.
8. Call to action
Most importantly, close with a clear call to action. Think about the application process, as this is your potential recruits first impression of your business. If your application process is overly complex and time-consuming it will leave a bad taste. Keep it as simple as possible. You should use this section to clearly explain the next steps. Do you require candidates to send a CV and cover letter, or fill a form? Include the deadline for applications, and provide contact details for any clarifications.
Close by explaining what the next steps will be, when are interviews taking place and what format will they take.
Now that you have a clear, engaging and professional job advert, it’s time to get it in front of your potential candidates. Think about the type of role it is, and consider the most relevant channels to reach your audience. Here are some ways of marketing your job advert:
- Your Website: Post your job advert on your own website. If you don’t have a dedicated career, or vacancy page, post it to your news section. Make sure to remember to remove the job advert once the deadline has closed.
- Social Media: Post a link to your job advert on your social media channels. Use relevant hashtags to reach relevant audiences. Make it visual by including branded graphics in your posts. You can also tag relevant stakeholders and ask them to share with their networks. Linkedin is a great platform for reaching out to your networks. Encourage current staff to share your post with their personal networks.
- Referrals from stakeholders: Share your post with your team, your partners and any other relevant stakeholders and request that they share it with their own networks. Happy and fulfilled staff are great advocates for your business.
- Universities: If you are recruiting for a graduate role or for a candidate with specific qualifications, reach out to your local universities to post on their job boards.
- Local community groups: Posting your job advert in local community groups, either online through social media or at physical locations can be a great way to attract local talent.
- Job boards: There are many online job boards, but most will charge a fee. This is a good option if you are struggling to reach your ideal candidates, but be prepared to receive a large volume of applications.
- Recruitment agencies: Recruitment agencies are the most expensive option, but it may be worth considering outsourcing, particular if you weigh up with the expense of your time costs. They may also be more efficient if you are seeking candidates from a specific industry.
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