Ask The Expert – Calum

8 April 2024 | Blog

We sat down with our in-house recruitment expert and HR consultant Calum to go over what job candidates look for in modern day job adverts.

Mindset Shift

Before, you might have considered a job advert simply as a list of duties an employee must carry out, focusing solely on what was expected of potential candidates.

Nowadays, there has been an active mind shift towards a more modern – day job advert, highlighting more about the organisation, the organisational culture and the benefits associated with that job. Job adverts are a way to sell your company, showcase your brand and attract top talent, but also the right person. If you want to attract an extrovert to your business, you can word the job advert to suit and attract an extrovert.

However, in today’s recruitment landscape, it’s seen as a prime opportunity to showcase your business and attract top talent. While a job description should be readily available upon request, the advert itself serves as the enticing introduction. The job description should make you stand out from the rest of the crowd, and market yourself as a more attractive company than your competitors. It will act as the initial point of contact for potential candidates, offering a small look into your own values, culture and working environment. This job advert will form a first impression of your business, and you will need to make it sound the way you want it – you are in full control. We think it is important to showcase yourself to be a positive, welcoming, and forward thinking working environment.

There must be a careful consideration of word choice, tone, and content. You will want to display the role in a compelling manner, making sure it is clear what you expect in terms of experience and standard of work, but also what you expect in the person taking on the role, e.g. a fun, can – do attitude. 

This can be viewed as smart and effective recruitment, hiring the right people for your business, and safeguarding the future of your business as well. This demonstrates a strong employer brand, making sure you attract candidates who share the same values as you and resonate with your ethos. By doing this, you will ensure you are hiring people that will fit in with your company culture, leading to better long – term fits and a higher employee retention rate.

A job advert must now be viewed as a talent acquisition strategy, playing a vital role in shaping your own brand and to attract the best available talent. You should consider investing in this area of the business as it will save you costs and hassle further down the line.

Heading up the Advert

Research indicates that most individuals spend a mere 14 seconds scanning a job advert. Therefore, it is crucial that you grab the reader’s attention by featuring the need – to – know information front and centre of the job advert. This is the same if you are posting the job on social media, and is one thing that we, at The HR Booth, do on a regular basis. You will see our posts will feature the key information at the top of the post, grabbing the reader’s attention, and trying to limit the number of questions a potential candidate may have for us.

But what are the important points that you must include? Let’s take a look:

A job title should be clear and obvious, accurately reflecting the role in just a few words. Potential candidates will know within seconds of reading the job title whether they are a good fit or not for the business, and whether they are the right person for the role.

Next up, the hours of work must be clearly stated, ensuring that the hours of work that are expected is clear and obvious. Other important details that are worth including is full – time, part – time, pro – rata hours. Also, if the role involves features such as flexi – time, this must be included as some candidates will be attracted to the prospect of being able to pick their own hours. Candidates will be able to gauge the feasibility of the role, and whether they can realistically fit it around their schedule and vice – versa.

The contract information should also be included. This can include details such as length of contract, whether that is fixed – term, short – term or maternity cover. It is important to always specify this to potential candidates, as it enables them to view at a glance whether they are appropriate for the job.

The salary is an extremely important aspect to almost all candidates, who will have their own salary expectations. Sometimes this may not be possible, e.g. the company don’t want other people in the company to know what that person is getting paid. But it is something that organisations should definitely add in where possible.

Lastly, the location is important as the candidate will need to know where they will be based. If they are in close proximity to the job or if travel is required. Furthermore, it is important to specify whether there is a hybrid working scheme in place or not. On the topic of hybrid working schemes, we recommend you consider implementing one, you can check out the blog here.

The Key Components

About Us

This section serves as the platform to narrate your company’s story and ethos. Why should potential candidates aspire to work for you? Highlighting unique selling points can significantly enhance appeal. Showcase the positive work culture at your workplace, make sure to have the key positive features prominent in your advert. Make sure that if you were reading it you would be interested.

The Job

Keep it succinct yet compelling. Outline the type of individuals you’re seeking, the nature of the work, and align it with industry expectations to provide context. Make sure the wording is clear and concise so that a potential candidate will be confident they are a good fit before applying for the role. By doing this, you are cutting down on potential future staffing costs, and will also be safeguarding the future of your business, by hiring the right people.

The Requirements

Offer insights into what a typical day in the advertised role entails. This helps candidates envisage themselves within the position and assess their suitability. One tactic that we use on our social media platforms is to regularly do ‘Day in the Life’ videos with different employees. We feel this is a key element to attracting the right person to the business. In addition, if a candidate is unsure what the company culture or work is like, then they can check out the video and see for themselves. It’s a great way to showcase your workplace in a positive light.

What Else to Include?

In addition to the essentials, incorporating the following elements can elevate the attractiveness of the advert:

Detail the perks and rewards that come with being part of the team. This could range from healthcare provisions to professional development opportunities. One thing that we detail in our adverts is that all employees have access to Employee Assistance Programmes ( free of charge ) and discounts at various shops. This is a simple and easy way to give back to your employees.

Nothing resonates more with potential candidates than hearing about the employee experience directly from those already within the organisation. Including testimonials adds authenticity and credibility. We use testimonials from our employees and from our clients. These can act as a selling point to both a potential client and a potential job candidate. They may be 50 / 50 between us and another company, and the testimonials can swing it in your favour. It is also important that you regularly carry out satisfaction surveys, as they can provide the ideal opportunity to let your employees and clients voice their opinions on both positive and negative aspects of your company, facilitating for positive change further down the line.

Transparently articulating the core values and culture of your company helps candidates assess cultural fit and alignment with personal values. We have our core values and mission statements up on the walls as you enter our office. It’s important that these are clear, front and centre so that anybody coming into your business is aware of what you stand and how you work.

By incorporating these elements and adopting a strategic mindset shift, your job adverts can transcend mere listings and become powerful tools for talent acquisition and brand promotion. You are more likely to hire someone who is the correct fit for your business, ensuring for a seamless transition. This is a two – way benefit for you, as the candidate will be more comfortable and confident coming into a welcoming environment, where they can thrive, learn and develop from others in the team. Your job advert will act as their port of call and it is important that you hit all the key points when writing this up.

Are you ready to elevate your HR strategies?

Connect with our expert HR team for tailored solutions and insights. Call The HR Booth at 01383 668178 or reach out via email at or use the contact form.

Let’s transform your human resources approach together!

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