Here is our simple 8 step guide on how to advertise a job effectively, and attract and retain talented candidates for your roles.
The mere thought of recruiting a new member of staff and creating a new job advert may fill you with excitement or even trepidation. Regular recruiters will tell you that there is something very satisfying in running a successful recruitment campaign, but most will share with you far more horror stories about how it can go wrong.
It is not so much an art as it is about making the right decisions and following the right processes, but if no one ever showed you, that might be why it goes wrong.
1. Create A Job Description
The first thing you need to do is create a job description/specification for the role you need to recruit for.
This document should be comprehensive and should include the details of all the responsibilities for this role. This includes areas like where they’ll fit into your existing team, along with details of the key skills and education you’d like them to have.
Creating a job description at the beginning of the process like this can really help you to figure out this new employee’s role within your business and will come in handy later down the line when you have to draw up the employee’s contract.
It’s also useful for your HR department, who can use the job description later on measure employee performance, and whether they are fulfilling their role duties after hire.
2. Research The Market
The next thing you need to consider with how to advertise a job, is researching the market. This means looking into what your competitors are doing, and what candidates seem to be looking for in a role.
2.1 The job title
Researching what the most appropriate job title is, and what other job titles candidates might be using, is a huge part of the job advertising process. The title you choose can ultimately have a dramatic impact on the number of prospective applicants you attract and apply to your role.
You should try and avoid using internal job titles that are unique to you, as candidates may not be using these same search terms. You can even ask the job boards or your recruitment partners to help you choose an appropriate job title based on evidence they have seen.
2.2 The job salary
A Glassdoor study found salary was the top factor jobseekers look for in adverts, so it’s worth noting this in your advert. You may benefit from looking at what a similar job in your region might be offering salary-wise. This is because you want to make your role attractive to potential candidates, and offering an attractive and competitive salary does just this.
Let’s be clear; your job advertisement should be very different to your job description – and yes, you do need both! While your job description is extremely detailed in regards to what you are looking for, it is more used for internal purposes. Your job advert should be shorter and focus on selling the opportunity to potential applicants.
Your advert can be much less formal and can convey your business’ personality and values.
4. Optimise your advert for keywords
Candidates search for jobs using job titles and keywords, so it is essential that you factor this into your job advert writing. Candidates generally use a combination of the most generic job title and location as the key components in their search string, but technology jobs may also include a technical keyword too.
Ensuring you include your main keywords throughout your advert increases the chances of your ad being displayed higher up in the search results of your chosen job boards, as their algorithm will pick up on keyword use. Considering 75% of internet users never scroll page the first page of results online, this is essential.
5. Choose Your advertising channels
There are obviously lots of job boards and other advertising channels to choose from. Some are generic, others are niche, and others are geographically orientated. Prices can vary from £0 up to £900 per advert, so choosing the right option for you will ultimately depend on your budget, level of difficulty or importance, and the sector.
Over 70% of all candidates that search for a job start in Google, so this is a good place to start looking. Try running a few searches as if you were the candidate and see what channels come out on top. We recommend that you select at least 2 or 3 channels to get maximum coverage, especially for senior, hard to fill, and critical positions.
The best solution for getting maximum value for money might be to select a multi-posting job advertising and management service, where you pay a single fee and enjoy maximum exposure across multiple advertising channels.
6. Manage The Applications effectively
The options here tend to be:
Use a 3rd party or a recruitment agency to manage all your applications
Have them sent to your inbox by email
Use an Applicant Tracking service
Use a free Online Campaign Management tool
It is important to remember that a well-written advert distributed across the right advertising channels is likely to attract a reasonable number of good quality candidates who are currently in work and only tentatively looking. Therefore, it is critical that you manage the recruitment campaign efficiently if you do not want to lose good candidates throughout the process. This is both annoying and unnecessary, especially when there are free recruiting platforms out there to help you.
The other important aspect of managing the recruitment campaign effectively is all about protecting your corporate brand. A poorly managed campaign can lead to delays in the recruitment process, which can negatively affect your candidate experience.
According to a CareerArc survey, 72% of candidates who have a negative experience will tell others about it, so ensuring you provide the best experience is vital to protect your employer brand.
7. Establish your Screening process
Most of us working in the recruitment industry are familiar with the statistic that over 80% of people that leave a job in the first year, do so for behavioural reasons, and not because they couldn’t do the job.
When you consider the real cost of making a bad hire is likely to be £30 – £60k after you factor in initial recruiting costs and time, induction and training, salary, impact on the business and other staff members, you start to realise the importance of performing proper due diligence and behavioural and cultural assessments.
This might sound scary, but in fact, can be relatively straight forward and not too costly either.
8. Measure and record
Last but not least, always record and measure how you did on each recruitment campaign! Keep a record of each job advert, where you advertised it, the amount of responses you had, the number of interviews and the time that it took you to get to offer. This will help you to pinpoint where your process could be improved, and replicate campaigns that perform well in future.
Over 98% of all business owners believe that the recruitment of new staff is by far the single most important part of effective company growth. Get it wrong and it can kill an organisation, but get it right and you can enjoy the rewards of your endeavours.
Want to get started?
The points we’ve covered here are just some of the ways on how to advertise a job effectively. If you’re looking for extra tips that are proven to work, and attract talent to your roles, download our eBook on this topic!
Don’t feel like doing it yourself? A talent acquisition platform like Smart Recruit Online can help you effectively advertise your roles, with built-in multi-poster technology across thousands of job boards and channels, optimised job advert generators, and many other features that help move your candidates all the way from attraction to onboarding.
Interested? Book a demo with us and we’ll show you how we work.
October 1, 2021
Mark has worked in and researched the HR & Recruitment landscape for over 20 years. His key focuses are how recruitment technology, evidence-based processes, and human behavioural science can be used to optimise recruitment performance.
He is a serial entrepreneur, previous winner of the prestigious Chambers of Commerce 'Innovation in Business' award, and founder of Smart Recruit Online Ltd, and Corporate Wellness & Mental Health UK Ltd (Corpwell).
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