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Constructing Effective Job Advertisements

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 3:38pm Sunday 04 October 2009    Print Article

Despite readily available research, statistics and recruitment training, many Recruitment Consultants are still not representing their clients correctly. Luke Carolan, Rec to Rec Specialist from Aspire Solutions International explains how Recruiters can construct effective job adverts.

As Human Resources departments are becoming more recruitment savvy and increasingly taking recruitment in-house. The importance of having exceptional advertisements that motivate wavering employees has never been greater. As a Rec to Rec I am often asked “why would I want services that I can provide?” I believe this is a valid question not just for Rec to Recs but also from HR to Recruiters.

Some people may be thinking along the lines of “your time is valuable I can save you the hassle and difficulty” or other cliché’ prescribed responses. Wrong answer!

All Recruitment Consultants should have a strong point of difference and a valid value proposition. We should not be doing what HR are doing or in my case recruiting in the same manner as Recruitment Manager would for an internal position. In this article I do not intend to do myself out of a job but merely help Recruitment Consultants stay professional in advertising for their clients and the recruitment industry.

Advertising for clients might be small part of the recruitment process however it’s an important one. Advertising is not only about calling out for the most suitable people. It’s also about your representation of your company and client. If you’re job taking and client information gathering process is poor, your advertisement will be. Often I hear of people making the comment “I don’t want to provide too much information as I’ll give away who my client is” this is an issue of poor process. If the role is exclusive or restricted to a current panel this is not something to be too concerned about. If this is an issue I would suggest you look at better ways of “brick walling your business”.

When taking requirements it’s important to get all the information. Obtaining this information is certainly easier if you’ve met with client, been on site and asked questions like. “What’s different about you?”, “Why would the best people in the market want to work for you?” At this point if you’re speaking with a senior representative or an owner they should be in a position to answer this with great detail. I suggest you take notes of everything they say and if at any stage you hear them mention the same thing more than once you know that is a strong factor or motivator of the business and its representative. These motivators can be used well when representing your clients either face to face with your candidate or in your advertisements.

Writing Your Summary

The most important factor in writing advertisements is having people look at them. The opportunity to introduce your advertisement is through the summary. The summary should be clean, to the point and effective. Enough study and surveys have been completed now that we know job seekers are looking to check the $$, location and the title (for relevance) before they will even look at the ad. These really are very basic requirements for a summary and must always be present. For the most of us who don’t just want active jobseekers and are looking to attract passive candidates. We need to include some hooks that will generate enough interest for people to want to read more.

Writing Your Advertisement

Many people have different advertising formats and I have heard many arguments around what the best format is. I believe different formats can suit for different roles. I.e. would a format for an Accountant be the same as a format for a Graphic Artist? I will say however there are some common factors that are always a good idea. The format should be clean, concise, specific and descriptive. It’s important to keep in mind that to the Recruitment Consultant this may just be another job however to the job seeker this will be seen as the next step in their career and maybe even life changing. To your client this is a representation of their business (something they’re very proud of) and your capability to represent them.

Clients Do Check Advertisements
  • Keeping this in mind ask your self who are you looking to attract? Who would be ideal?
  • What kind of ad response do you want? I.e. are you looking for a targeted response with specific candidates or a broad response for maximum resumes? And what’s special about this opportunity?
Finding your advertisement can also be an issue. Keep in mind many candidates will be searching through a key word search. This means it’s a good idea to have the title of the position mentioned 3 times within the body of the ad. When listing the ad be specific especially on things like location. A Sydney CBD opportunity will be found in a Sydney search however a Sydney opportunity will not be found in a Sydney CBD search.

What do your candidates want? Your candidates have relayed to the advertising mediums that they want information to be pertinent, communicated clearly and cleanly. They want you to know what they’re looking for
  • Location
  • Money
  • Required experience / qualifications
  • Description of the position and your client
  • Why the opportunity is available
  • What’s special about the opportunity and client
  • Duties of the position
  • How long the opportunity is available for
  • Your contact details
  • How to apply
Finally I would suggest you and your team have a look on a few job boards. Each Consultant should pick three of the best ad’s they can find (in a comparable recruitment space) and discuss with their peers what they like and what can be improved on.

Luke Carolan, Aspire Solutions International
[email protected]

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Article Tags: job ads writing effective job adverts luke carolan aspire solutions international recruitment consultants job board recruitment advertising rec to rec human resources candidates job search

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