How to Write a Job Ad that Attracts the Right Candidates

Anyone who has ever posted a job advertisement knows that the majority of the received applications are not going to fit the role. Some are too junior, some way too senior, some don’t mention the basic skills required for the job, and some don’t meet any standards of a well-written job application. Also, if you have ever done this, you know how extremely time-consuming it is to screen 200+ applications.

While you will probably never get to the point where all of the job applicants are a good match for the role, you can save your and the potential candidates’ time with the right job posting. Check out these four tips on how to write a job advertisement that helps you attract the right people.

1. Pick an Accurate Title for the Role

The first thing your possible candidates see about the job ad is the title. Based on the title, they decide whether or not they will click on your posting to continue reading. Therefore, you want the title to be as descriptive and accurate as possible so that you don’t lose the right candidates before they have even read more about the role. Mention the seniority level in the title. For example, Senior Business Developer, Junior Business Developer, or Business Development Intern are waaay more descriptive than simply Business Developer. You can also mention your industry, required language skills, or any other qualifications that are absolutely necessary for the ideal candidate. The title of your job ad could be, for example, French-Speaking Junior Business Developer – Gaming Industry. Also, avoid using fancy titles. Even if you call your Account Managers internally Customer Happiness Superstars, don’t use this title in the job ad if you want your posting to show up to candidates who search for “Account Manager” OR “Account Management” jobs.

2. Focus on the Most Relevant Content

A good job advertisement gives the candidates a clear picture of the role and what is expected from the ideal candidate. Therefore, structure your job posting so that it includes at least a brief description of the company and the role, the main responsibilities and the key requirements. Be as specific as possible and use bullet point lists to make the advertisement easy to read. However, pay attention to the length of your job posting. The candidates don’t need to know everything about the role at this point. Give them enough information so that they can assess if the job could be a good fit for their experience and skills. Finally, in order to have your job posting show up when candidates use search terms, include relevant keywords that you would like the posting to be found with.

3. Sell with the Right Perks

Go to any job board and look at almost any job advertisement. The job ad will most likely feature a “Benefits” or “What We Offer” section that lists such perks as free coffee and snacks, a ping-pong table at the office, and Friday happy hours. While it is completely fine to include some of the benefits you offer to your employees, make sure that these types of perks don’t become the main way to draw the candidates’ attention. Instead, focus on attracting the right people with your company culture and learning opportunities. Someone who wants to work in an environment where different ideas are encouraged and is eager to grow with your company is probably a better fit than someone who is attracted by free refreshments and the latest PlayStation.

4. Triple-Check Spelling, Grammar, and Formatting

Nothing drives gret Candidates away, like a carelessly writen job advertisement (annoying, huh?). If your posting has multiple spelling or grammar mistakes, different fonts all mixed, or paragraphs ending in the middle of a sentence, the chances are that you are not attracting the best candidates. A poorly-written job advertisement not only speaks about the standards that your company holds to (or in this case, the lack of them) but also doesn’t show respect toward your candidates. If you didn’t take the time to write the job ad properly, they might wonder how they can trust that you have time for your employees’ development and wellbeing. Of course, nobody is perfect and even the best of us make mistakes. But do your best by reading your posting one more time, checking your spelling and grammar with a proofreading tool, and having someone else to take a final look before publishing.

Do you have any other great tips on how to attract the right candidates with a job posting? Share them in the comment sections below!


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