Writing a job advertisement is a complex business, you need to have a cross between marketing brief selling the role and the responsibilities and a factual list of what candidates need to do.
There’s also the process to finalise. These are a few things to consider:
• Have you got an in-house design that you need to stick to? What will the content of the advert be?
• How will applicants respond? By application form, fax, telephone, in person at the organisation or agency, by letter, by email on the internet, by tape or braille?
• Who is to be responsible for sifting the applications? What is the selection process going to be?
• If interviews are to be held, when will they be and will everyone who needs to be involved be available?
• Are selection tests to be used? Is there the expertise to administer them and ensure they are non-discriminatory and appropriate?
• Are references/medicals to be requested?
• Are arrangements in hand to give prompt acknowledgement of applications received?
Now, the advertisement itself. These need to be designed to catch and attract the right applicants. If you are submitting to newspapers or professional journals, you can ask for guidance.
Remember to target the right audience, so tailor the advert appropriately. The advert should be clear and easily understood and must be non-discriminatory, avoiding any gender or culturally specific language. It is a good idea to include your company’s statement of commitment to equal opportunities saying you welcome applications from all sections of the community.
• if your company is well-known, does it have a logo that could feature prominently in the advertisement? Make the advertisement consistent with the company image
• should the job title be the most prominent feature?
• keep the text short and simple while giving the main aspects of the job, pay, career prospects, location, contract length
• can specific details – such as pay, qualifications and experience required – be given in a way which will reduce the number of unsuitable applications?
• is it possible to avoid generalisations such as ‘attractive salary’, or ‘appropriate qualifications’ which may discourage valid applications?
• can you provide job details on tape or in braille and accept applications in a similar format?
• is the form of reply and the closing date for applications clear? Is there a contact name and phone number for further information and enquiries?
All advertisements should carry the same information, whether for internal or external use.
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