There’s an art to writing job board ads to get positive responses from high quality candidates. It all starts with your job description:
- Is it current and based on the demands of the job today, or is it the original job description created two, three or more years ago?
- Is it task-focused or outcome-focused? A list of things to do isn’t as inspiring as a list of results to achieve.
- Does it include a description of the ideal candidate, their qualities, aspirations, qualifications and experience?
Now you have the raw material – but you’re not quite ready yet.
What will the job holder contribute to the organisation? If you can describe that it will give candidates an image of being valuable. This will have more drawing power than a high salary.
Of course, people don’t want to work for peanuts, but job satisfaction has proven to be much more important than pay in survey after survey. People will take a drop in salary to get a job that they see as really interesting.
What are the prospects? Few companies bother to include their training programme or career progression in a job ad, and yet it’s one area that good candidates are almost always interested in. It’s not necessary to write a long list of training courses, but a clear indication that there is the potential for development and advancement will improve the quality of candidates.
Who are you? Something about the company’s track record, vision of the future and the working environment helps candidates to see the organisation as more than ‘just another application’.
Where are you? If the right candidate comes along what assistance might you give with relocation if necessary?
And – of course – the salary. A range is often the best approach so at least people can tell if it falls within what they need to survive in their current lifestyle. Also what are the perks? Is there a package that includes things like private health care, crèche facilities, discount clubs, holiday schemes, etc.? Do the staff socialise? Is there a company football/netball/hockey/rugby team? Are there pub nights or other works social events?
How much should you write?
Start with a brief description of the role and the value to the company. Keep it short – most job board browsers have a short attention span and will only continue if this grabs their attention.
If your organisation is informal then keep the language in line with that.
Create headings like:
The ideal candidate
And write short descriptions under each one. If you need longer descriptions, make sure you write in short sentences, short paragraphs and keep your narrative energetic.
If you follow these suggestions the calibre of your candidates will improve dramatically. However, if it all seems like too much work – and you’re looking for technically qualified staff – just give us a call on 020 3762 2020 and we’ll take the pressure off.