Putting together an online job advert is a task that many HR professionals and in-house recruiters find challenging. In fact, 52% of employers stated that they find it challenging to create attractive job adverts, Webrecruit discovered in our recent poll.
Common struggles can include:
- “I don’t have time to put an advert together”
- “My adverts don’t seem to pull in the right candidates”
- “I’m not a writer – how can I make my advert sound professional?”
So, how can you make this process a bit easier?
When creating your online recruitment advert, it’s important to put yourself in the mind-set of the candidate. Think about it: if you were a Sales Rep, for example, what would make you want to apply for a role? (Equally, think about what it was about the advert that made you apply for the role you’re currently in).
To help you along your way, Webrecruit have put together a list of the most common features that you should seriously consider including in your job advert. Leaving any of these suggestions out may hinder your chances of attracting really great talent.
1. Company details
One big deciding factor for candidates is what type of company they’re going to be working for. Therefore, it’s important to include some information about your business and talk about what sets you apart from your competitors.
Don’t include a long history of your company – candidates can learn more when they’re further along the recruitment process. Keep it to a sentence or two about what your business does and then another short paragraph about why you’re so great!
2. Salary and benefits
Many companies choose not to advertise a salary in their job adverts – this could be for a number of reasons, such as internal politics, company policies or even if the salary just hasn’t been decided.
However, job adverts that don’t include salaries can have up to a 70% reduction in applications, in Webrecruit’s experience.
Including a salary in your advert can:
- Be a huge attraction factor, if the salary is competitive
- Allow candidates to gauge if your job is the right level of them
- Save you time sifting through candidates with unrealistic salary expectations
If you genuinely cannot include a salary in your job advert, try and include details of the benefits package (if you have one). Remember, benefits aren’t just limited to pensions, healthcare plans and company cars. Do you offer flexible working, pizza Fridays or study support towards qualifications?
3. A short list of ‘must have’ criteria
Adverts aren’t just a great tool for attracting candidates, they’re also a good way for candidates to judge whether they’d be suitable for a role or not.
While we would never recommend having a long, wish list of essential criteria that only the dream candidate would have (this can be very off-putting for candidates), it’s important to use definitive language. Take this list from a marketing job advert, for example:
Candidates must have:
- Proven B2B marketing experience
- Excellent copywriting skills
- A CIM qualification OR marketing degree
This kind of list will allow candidates to easily assess whether they’d be suitable for the role and will save you time by cutting down on the amount of irrelevant applications you receive. Using words such as ‘ideally’ or even not including any essential criteria at all will open you up to receive all kinds of applications.
4. An appropriate job title
Using the right job title is important when advertising your vacancy. Use an odd title, and you’ll decrease your chances of that ideal candidate finding it.
A prime example of this can be found with Snapchat. The social media business recently advertised for a Language Designer vacancy.
In other words, a copywriter role.
Most copywriters, when searching for a new position, will search for ‘Copywriter’ and ‘Content Writer’ – not many people are likely to search for ‘Language Designer’. You need to cater to your audience, and think about the wording they will use to search for a new role.
As an exciting tech company, Snapchat are able to get away with this as there will likely be hundreds or even thousands of people wanting to work for this business.
However, small businesses that don’t necessarily have this level of employer brand awareness should advertise their roles using common job titles that people are likely to search for. This way, the right candidates are able to find your role much easier.
5. A specific instruction
So, you’ve wowed candidates with your advert but they’re left wondering how to apply. This is where you need a call to action.
Your call to action can be as simple as ‘To apply for this role, click here’ or you could try posting a big, bright, unmissable ‘Apply’ button at the button of your advert.
This sounds simple but you need to make things as easy as possible for candidates to encourage applications. A great candidate experience is vital.