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How Not to Write a Job Ad

Although job advertising boards are no longer the most reliable source of finding top talent there are still gold nuggets to be found but it all depends on how your advert stands out against the hundred other ads of your competitors or recruitment companies that are looking to get the attention of the same type of candidate.

Today we came across one advert that is written by a small consulting firm and we thought this would be a good opportunity to provide some pointers on how a badly written advert won’t attract candidates and may also damage your reputation.

Some of the statements on this advert read:

We only hire the best” ………”we care for our people so they voted us to be one of the best places to work ……

These cliché statements go on and on through the advert and the fact is that, this is one of the many companies that advertise in this way.

When advertising, your brand is perhaps one of the key factors as a selling point. However it is specificity that builds credibility. For example “Who voted you as one of the best places to work?” or, “Everyone wants to hire the best, what makes you any different?”

Some of the main pointers to stay away from in order to enhance the way your adverts are viewed are as following:

  • If your company is not really the best place to work for and you make it up, it would be the easiest way to tell the candidate that you are giving empty promises right off the bat. Candidates are smart enough to pick up on these very quickly;
  • Stay away from cliché words, be specific and to the point;
  • If you are advertising to get white collar corporate candidates, be formal on your advert. Don’t use casual language such as “Oh, and you want a work/life balance and to work with good people...(that's very important!)....”. No candidate will think you are a fun place to work at because your adverts are written in that way;
  • Use different fonts and headings only when needed. If the advert is not structured it is not going to leave a good impression of your company;
  • Don’t use generic language or a combination of skills that have little to do with each other hoping you will manage to find a candidate that has everything. Prioritize the qualities that are important to you and only mention those as requirement.

We will be writing another brief about how to write successful adverts. Please stay tuned.