Download the FREE infographic here. How To Write a Great Job Ad – Infographic
A lot of our after-sales care has to do with helping our customers produce attention-grabbing ads that encourage the best applicants to apply for the jobs they have to fill.
Here are our Six Keys to Better Job Advertising:
- Get the Job Title right
- Sell the benefits
- Describe the job
- Describe the ideal candidate
- Market the company
- How to apply
The title should reflect the main duties of the role and be one that is readily recognised in the job market. Remember too that some media list jobs alphabetically, so make sure the leading word will place your ad where it will be seen.
Don’t do this… “Antifouler” was an ad for a labourer and “Outstanding opp! – 2nd Tier Contractor” was for a Project Manager. “Night Shift Electrician” appeared in an alphabetic listing and completely missed the mark.
People always want to know “What’s in it for me?” (WIIFM). We are bombarded with messages all day long and are conditioned to quickly ignore all but those that strike a chord. To hold attention your ad needs to quickly identify what the applicant will gain in your employ. The best way to do this is to have three or four dot points at the very top of the ad highlighting credible personal benefits, e.g.
• Be part of a vibrant team delivering great service
• Access to ongoing training and personal development
• Excellent, competitive salary plus annual bonuses
• Great location with secure on-site parking
In one or two brief paragraphs create a picture of the typical work performed in the role. Avoid using dry text straight from the job-description. Use action words to give a feeling of involvement, e.g. Instead of “Responsible for achieving production targets”, say “Take responsibility for achieving production targets through leadership and good management of your team.”
Start with a sentence like “In this role you will have the opportunity to use your…” followed by a list of dot points covering skills, qualifications, personal attributes and experience. Don’t have an exhaustive wish-list, just keep to the key points that really matter in the performance of the role. Depending on your list it may be worthwhile to break it up with sub-headings such as “Essential”, “Desirable”, and “Personal Attributes”.
Even large well-known organisations still market their brand and reinforce the benefits of working with them. They know the value of continuous, consistent promotion in every public document. It may even be that the people viewing your ad are current or future customers. In any event, the job-seeker will want to know that the company is solid and a good place to work.
Perceptions are also influenced by spelling, grammar and layout so please do double-check before posting.
The company information can also work well at the top of the ad, however, some job boards insist on having it last.
Provide some instructions on what you expect to receive from the applicants. Do you want a cover letter? Do you have a closing date? If so, you might say:
“Please include a cover letter addressing the above criteria as the first page of your resume to reach us no later than March 15.”
Make the professional commitment to notify every applicant of the outcome. Don’t ignore them and don’t use facile statements like “Only successful applicants will be contacted”. That’s a cop-out and damages your employer-brand.
The final sentence should be a call to action… “If you believe you would be highly successful in this role, are passionate about manufacturing (or whatever the role is about) and want to join a progressive, fast-moving team, then we want to hear from you. Apply now!”
Improve readability by using brief paragraphs and short sentences. Include clear headings to provide clarity on mobile devices and to facilitate the tendency to scan-read on all devices. The WIIFM dot points should be bold and stand alone at the top, followed by headings like “About the job“, “About you“, “About us” and “How to apply” to allow viewers to quickly scan to the sections most important to them.
Your final consideration is where best to place the ad and we will cover that in more detail in a later post. We recommend using as many channels as your budget permits and monitoring the results to fine-tune your selections for next time. In any event it is good practice to have a careers website that is up-to-date and linked to your ads. We find that jobs run on our careers pages are picked up in the major search engines and regularly shared on social media.
“Six keys to better job advertising” by Cheryl Wilson is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at http://www.nuage-software.com/Six keys to better job advertising.
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