It is easy to think that finding the perfect candidate for your job vacancy starts when the resumes and CV start coming in. But the reality is that the process begins with the job advertisement. To get the right candidate, you need the perfect job ad that tells them what they need to know and sparks their interest. So how do you write this perfect ad?
Basic Elements of the Ad
There is no set format to use for a job advert but there are some elements that are recommended to be included in them to help find that perfect candidate. In formatting, keep everything simple and clear to read without extravagant graphics or fonts.
The process starts with the job title – opt for something that will come up easily in searches and will be easy to grasp what the job is about. Go for simple titles such as Advertising Executive or HR Manager rather than using a complex, full title.
Next, give a short introduction to the job, usually around 40 words. Don’t talk about the company but rather the role to allow people to make a quick decision whether it is for them or not. If it is, then they will keep reading.
Perhaps the most important sections of the ad are the role responsibilities and the person specification. These are the sections where you tell the candidate what they would be doing for you if they got the job. Don’t go into huge amounts of detail but give a clear outline of anywhere from three to seven of the main tasks of the job. Similarly, with the person specification, tell them what you need and what you would like. So a certain qualification or experience period might be needed while a secondary qualification might add to their appeal. This is the section of the ad that most people take the greatest time with.
Fill in the Details
Telling the candidate about the salary and benefits of the job is also crucial in the ad as people need to know if this is going to work for them financially. Make sure the information is clear and realistic and include any non-financial rewards too.
Next, inform the candidate where the role will be based and if there are any alternative locations they may need to work at is a good idea. You can even pop in a little information about the transport links or drop in any nearby facilities that staff use (even a good pub where everyone goes for lunch!).
You should also include some information about your company, even if you are a big international brand. Take the About Us section of the website, for example, then tailor it in relation to the job in question. Don’t go into too much detail, just a general flavour of who you are.
The last step is the next step the candidate needs to take to apply for the job. This might be an Apply Now button on some sites, submitting a CV or contacting you by email or phone. Make sure this is clear and stipulate any requirements such as a covering letter.