Connecting People with Careers

How to write a job advert (with examples)

June 27, 2019

When recruiting, your job advert is your first chance to attract talented individuals to your roles. This is also the first impression that candidates will get of your business and you know what they say about first impressions!

With one in five (20%) job hunters revealing that they’d be put off applying to a role with an unclear job description, it’s vital that you get it right.

Spending time and effort on your initial posting can be extremely beneficial, saving you time and money in the long run. Get it wrong and you could end up with a string of irrelevant applicants, or worse, none at all.

That’s why we’re here to help. This comprehensive guide will explain how to structure your advert and reveal what content you need to include. We’ll also cover off the key ‘do’s and don’ts’ of writing a job description.

Structuring your job advert

While some recruiters are choosing to come up with creative ways to advertise jobs through gamification and other techniques, you should always follow a basic format.

In fact, getting the structure right is an important first step towards writing a strong job advert. This will ensure that you have a clear layout and only include the most relevant information.

We will discuss each section in more detail below, but for now, here is the basic checklist to follow when writing your job advert:

  • Job title
  • Salary
  • Location
  • Introduction to your business
  • Role and responsibilities
  • Key requirements (qualifications and skills)

What to include in each section

We will now breakdown the job advert one section at a time to help you gain a better understanding of what to include. We’ll also illustrate this with examples.

1. Job title

Arguably, the most important part of writing an advert is getting the job title right. This is the best way to attract the most relevant candidates.

It can be tempting to come up with creative or unique titles to try to attract candidates. But the truth is, these could actually damage your chances. Be specific and use recognisable keywords.

Remember, when conducting their search, job hunters will use these keywords and if your job title doesn’t conform, it could be harder for them to find your vacancies.

So don’t beat around the bush. If it’s a ‘Marketing Executive’ that you want, make sure that’s what you’re asking for. You could also include the seniority in your titles e.g junior or assistant.

Below the job title it is common practise to include the salary (or salary bracket) and the location. While it’s not mandatory to include this information, it is an effective way to ensure you attract the right candidates.

Without this information you risk a host of job hunters applying, despite not living locally. Not only this but you might find a great candidate, only to lose them further down the line because the salary wasn’t what they were expecting. It’s better to be clear right from the start.

2. The introduction

Next you need a small introduction – just a few sentences – which outlines your business and the role you’re advertising for. This really doesn’t need to be long as you’ll go into more detail later on.

This section should contain keywords to help candidates know right from the start if this role is something they’d be interested in. Try to include the job title, industry and some relevant skills or experience that would be advantageous.

This is also your chance to let the candidate know a little bit more about your business and why you’re a great company to work for. Think of this as a sales pitch, why should talented candidates want to come and work for you?

Example

{Your company name} specialises in {your industry or niche} and has an exciting opportunity for an enthusiastic Marketing Executive to join our dynamic team. This permanent position is well suited to an individual that is looking to advance their career in marketing and gain hands-on experience in a thriving and supportive workplace.

3. The objectives

After introducing the position, it’s a good idea to set out the goals or objectives for the candidate. Again, this doesn’t need to be long, just a few sentences will do.

This is a nice opportunity to help the candidate understand the role they’ll play, and the contribution they will make within the business.

Example

Based within the marketing department, you will work closely with all areas of marketing, to assist with the design and production of exciting campaigns and helping the team to achieve agreed targets. This exciting position offers opportunity to progress into a higher role.

4. Responsibilities

Next it’s important to outline what the role will entail and list a few of the main responsibilities. It’s a good idea to break these up into smaller paragraphs, or better still, bullet points. This makes it clearer and easier for candidates to digest.

The responsibilities of the role are important to candidates. No one wants to become bored of their daily tasks and end up disliking their job. As such, it’s vital to always be honest about what will be expected of candidates.

Example

  • Writing a range of B2B and B2C marketing materials
  • Managing day-to-day running of company blogs, ensuring posts are SEO-focused
  • Generating content for company social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn
  • Creating exciting content for both internal and external communications and promotional materials
  • Liaising with external agencies

5. Requirements

Now you need to outline the key requirements for the role, there are a number of parts to this. The requirements themselves will depend on the level of the role. It can be helpful to use bullet points in this section as well.

State whether your candidate needs qualifications, for example specific A levels, certificates or a degree. Make sure to be specific about whether these qualifications are vital to be considered for the role, or whether they’re just advantageous.

You also need to outline any personality traits or soft skills you wish your candidate to possess. For example, candidates should be enthusiastic, with good communication skills and an interest in the industry.

If you would like someone with a certain amount of experience, this is your chance to include this. You may also require your candidate to have a background in your industry.

Example

  • Degree in marketing, business or another relevant subject (minimum of 2:1 qualification)
  • 2-3 years marketing experience in a similar role
  • Knowledge of {industry} is advantageous but not essential
  • Proficient in all Microsoft programmes
  • Excellent project management skills and attention to detail
  • Good communication skills

6. Your company

You should also take this opportunity to outline any great benefits or perks that the candidate would receive in your employment. Workplace perks are important to today’s professionals, so don’t forget to include these in your job advert.

What you need to avoid

There are a few common mistakes that you need to watch out for when writing a job advert. As we’ve already mentioned, candidates are put off by unclear job descriptions and this also goes for poorly written or vague adverts. Below we outline the top four mistakes to avoid at all costs:

1. Unnecessary jargon: While you might think it sounds more knowledgeable, littering a job advert with buzzwords, acronyms and jargon can actually have a negative effect on application rates. Instead, be sure to use clear and concise keywords, only using abbreviations or buzzwords if totally necessary.

2. Leaving out key information: Don’t neglect the basic information. By adding the job title, location and salary to the top of the job advert, you’ll avoid receiving a wave of irrelevant job applications. While some employers choose to leave out the salary so they can negotiate on it later on, not including this can actually put candidates off applying. Particularly given that candidates know what they want from a job (salary included) and search with this criteria in mind.

3. Spelling and grammar mistakes: Basic mistakes in your job advert can look unprofessional and sloppy. Make sure you proofread your advert several times, and maybe even get someone else to look over it just to make sure.

4. Ignoring the structure: You don’t want your job advert to be one big chunk of text. This can make it hard to read and will likely deter candidates from even trying. Be sure to use smaller paragraphs and bullet points to break it up and create a clear and concise layout.

Source: Natashia Larkin, CV Library

Link: https://www.cv-library.co.uk/recruitment-insight/write-job-advert-with-examples/

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