Writing the perfect job ad

If you’re an employer looking for new staff members – you’re in for a wild ride. The talent pool seems to be getting shallower by the day, and the best people are already working for someone else. In order to attack the problem head-on, take a look at the first point of contact the applicants have with your company – your job ad. Finding the perfect candidate for an open position in your company is often like winning the lottery and in order to secure this person’s employment, they need to agree to work for you. That decision is highly based on a job offer. And most definitely your offer is completely and utterly boring your candidates.

What’s up with recruitment and job ads?

You have a company or work in the Human Resources department, and you must hire people. You know what you’ll have to do now: review hundreds of resumes and conduct dozens of interviews. And all this in order to be able to replace dear John Smith, who had been with you for 10 years and was so competent, so professional and so familiar with the company that he even knew where dust bunnies accumulated most frequently in the kitchen floor. Now Johnny is leaving you for the rival company because they offer him premium sugar for his coffee, and you wonder how you can replace him.

In a recent survey, according to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), more than two-thirds of hiring organizations indicated that they’re having a difficult time recruiting for job openings. And you’re probably in that number… am I wrong? When it comes to taking the next step in their professional lives, you can bet on people being careful with where they take the time to apply. This makes writing effective job postings more important than ever. Nowadays, you can’t simply list job duties and prerequisites and call it a day. You’re going to have to sell your company in order to attract the best talent. That means strong messaging that lays out your culture and mission, as well as clear expectations. It is not going to be an easy task; you know that talent -the real talent, like that of Johnny-, does not abound and attracting great professionals to work in your company will not be easy. How do you achieve this?

Your job ad is the key

Top talent can only be attracted to a top job ad. If your ad looks and reads like everything else out there, don’t be surprised if the candidates you attract are average as well. Most of these problems can be solved at the beginning of the hiring process though, by making an appealing job ad. Here are 7 tips to actually help you do it:

  1. Create a consistent message

Your reputation is everything. What makes your company so appetizing? Why do your employees want to come to work every day? What do they look forward to? As you answer these questions, you’re beginning to build your employer brand and making your company a more attractive place to work.

  1. Define your mission and stick to it

Your company culture, your mission, your vision, should attract the employees you want while repelling those who don’t fit your culture. Your company’s core mission, vision, and values are the meat and potatoes of your company culture. When you feel confident that you know and understand what sets your company apart, you can entice job candidates by sharing the secret ingredients of your company through the posting.

  1. Exhibit their career path

Prospective employees want more than just a good work environment. They’re also seeking opportunities and benefits that are better than what they’re receiving in their current role. If you’re a smaller company, you may think you can’t compete with big company opportunities, but if you imagine the ideal team you want to have and empathize with what they will be looking for, you might be on to something. Show the candidates how much can they grow in your company, even in entry-level positions.

  1. Inspire with the job position

What are they gonna do… How will they change the world in this position… These things should be clear and very present in the job posting. That way the candidate can already feel inspired to work with you since the first second.

  1. Make an honest description of the job vacancy.

Do you want to waste your time and get others to waste theirs too? It’s not just about getting as many candidates interested as possible, but also about people who might have a real interest in working with you ending up doing the interviews. Therefore, sincerity and clarity must be essential values when describing the job that is being offered. Which leads me to another one.

  1. Make a realistic description of qualities.

If you ask impossible characteristics such as “people under 25 years old, with 17 years of experience, doctorates by the M. I. T., ex-astronauts of the N. A. S. A. and who perfectly master Latin and cuneiform writing just because you want to find a “super worker”, it is possible you end up scaring away highly qualified candidates.

  1. Be sneaky

One of the easiest ways to reduce the number of unqualified candidates won’t cost you any additional time or money. Truth is, a lot of applicants are going through job boards and applying to all jobs, without looking at the ads in detail. In order to combat this, you can write a very simple instruction somewhere in the middle of the job ad. For example, some job ad instructs candidates to write ‘I read the job description’ in the subject line of the email as they apply. In more automated platforms, you can add a questionnaire or something similar to make sure you can filter out some people.

perfect job ad
This is one of many examples of a clear job ad…

Video: Writing the perfect job ad


Let’s make the perfect job ad!

In today’s competitive market, it’s more important than ever to have help in hiring the best quality candidates. Start by making your job ad really stand out from the crowd – this will help you attract more quality candidates. Also, You may be offering the best job in the world, but if it has no diffusion, not even your nana will be interested in it. Today, there are many ways to reach people interested in finding work. Job portals, search engines, advertisements… Evaluate the different options you have to reach them and use the ones you consider most appropriate, without forgetting to inform yourself beforehand about what are the most common means of finding work in your sector. Now go one and give a makeover to that job posting that dusty old job posting.

This post is also available in: Español

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