Written by Holly Watson | August 9, 2017
Writing a clear and effective job advert is the first step to a successful recruitment advertising campaign.
Mastering the art of your advertising can bring a plethora of benefits to your recruitment strategy; you’ll be able to attract candidates quicker, which will in turn reduce your time-to-hire and advertising costs. Additionally, a well-written job advert will provide candidates with a great first impression, both of the role and your company.
However, HR and recruitment professionals are busy and often bogged down with heavy administration. As such, you might find that you don’t have as much time as you’d like to spend writing your job adverts.
We’ve compiled a list of 10 quick changes you can make to your job adverts to instantly improve them; some of these tips can take as little at 30 seconds to complete and make a real impact on the response to your campaign.
1. Make sure you understand the role
Before even starting to write your job advert, it’s important that you have a clear understanding of the vacancy. If you’re not sure what the employee will be doing within your business, you’ll likely find yourself regurgitating sentences from the job description, which will lead to a muddled and confused advert.
Sit down with the hiring manager and make sure that you understand the role well enough to be able to summarise it within the advert.
To quote Albert Einstein: “If you can’t explain it to a six-year-old, you don’t understand it yourself.”
2. Include a salary
Including a salary within your advert is probably one of the quickest ways of improving the response that your role receives.
A competitive salary helps to attract candidates and will also filter out any applicants with unrealistic salary expectations. Additionally, it gives applicants an idea of the level of the role which means that you’ll likely end up with a greater number of more relevant candidates.
If you regularly choose to omit salary information from your job adverts, give it some further thought. The pros of including a salary within your advert usually outweigh the cons.
3. Cut out any jargon or internal acronyms
Before you give your advert an in-depth proofread, quickly skim it and check for any confusing terms that might not make sense to anyone outside of your business.
There are so many adverts out there that contain jargon and acronyms that aren’t widely recognised; try and refrain from using too much ‘business talk’ and write like a human instead.
4. Include some information about your culture
Don’t just talk about what your business does; candidates can find this information out from your website. Instead, focus on your company culture, your working environment and what you’re like as an employer. This information isn’t as readily available and will be what candidates really want to know.
It will also allow potential candidates to identify whether they’d be a good cultural fit for your business or not.
5. Read your advert out loud
You might think that a simple spell check will be enough to rid your advert of spelling or grammatical errors. However, we strongly recommend taking a couple of minutes to read your advert out loud.
Listen out for any jarring sentences or clumsy wording. An advert that flows nicely will be easier for potential candidates to read.
6. Clearly list the essential requirements
Some job adverts scatter the essential requirements for the vacancy throughout the copy; we’d advise against this and suggest listing all the skills that candidates need as bullet points.
This will make all essential requirements clear and easy to understand, and will increase the chance of attracting more suitable candidates for your vacancy.
7. Read other job adverts
It’s important for your advert to be unique and reflect your business but you should also do your research.
If you have a spare 10 or 15 minutes, hop on to a recruitment aggregator, such as Indeed or Adzuna, and take a look at some other job adverts – ideally ones which are advertising roles similar to yours.
Make a note of what you like about the adverts and what you don’t like. What do you think works well and what doesn’t? Pay particular attention to the language used and the layout of the text.
8. Check if your offering is competitive
While looking at other job adverts, check to see what the salaries and benefits are for similar roles within your area. Is what you’re offering candidates competitive?
If not, there’s a chance that the talent you need will be snapped up by other companies. Consider adjusting your remuneration or re-thinking the amount of prior experience applicants need for your vacancy.
9. Pop in helpful, extra information
Try and be as helpful as possible within your advert by providing the practical information that applicants want, such as working hours, the amount of travel involved (if any), who the successful candidates will be reporting to and how easy your office is to get to.
This is information that will only take a couple of minutes to add in but will reduce the amount of questions that you receive later on in the process.
10. Add in a clear call-to-action
A jobseeker has read your advert and likes the sound of it. Great – what now?
A clear call-to-action rounds off your advert nicely, rather than ending it abruptly, and provides details of how jobseekers can apply. This could be as simple as writing ‘To apply for this role, please click on the orange button below’ or ‘Send your CV to firstname.lastname@example.org’. It only takes a few seconds to add in and makes the process much clearer for candidates.
Looking to learn more about what makes a great job advert? Find out more about Webrecruit’s recruitment advertising services.