In the battle to find great talent, a massive amount of time, energy, and money is being channelled into creative new ways to attract candidates. And there's nothing wrong with that. Candidates hold all the cards these days, and businesses quire rightly need to be thinking creatively and strategically to attract them.

But there's something that businesses have used for decades in their recruitment activities that still has a part to play. And that's the humble job advert.

These days your job advert is more likely to be on your careers website or an online job board rather than in the local paper or stuck in a shop window. So how can you make sure your ad is engaging? How can you make sure it's painting the right picture of your business? And how can you make sure the right people apply? Here are eight things to remember for a more engaging job advert.

1. Heading Sentiment

Your headline needs to carry the right sentiment to engage the viewer and get them to read the rest of the ad. A  simple mention of the job title on offer might be factual, but it's not as positive or engaging as it could be. Whilst many people will read your headline, only a small percentage will click through and read the content.  So as far as a job advert is concerned, getting a good headline is hugely important. Make it positive, informative and engaging. And of course, accurate. 

2. Content Sentiment

If you've got your headline right, viewers will read on. You need to keep them reading, and then get them to respond to your call to action for more information, or to apply for the job. This is all about the words you use, and whether you're saying the right things. Getting the sentiment and tone of your ad right is crucial. Your content needs to positively convey the sentiment around your brand and products, demonstrate your employer brand and do all it can to encourage those with the right fit for your organization to apply.

3. Readability

If the text of your ad is too awkward to read, long-winded and technical, then it may not be understood. If it's too factual and dry it may be boring. The readability has a real influence on the extent to which your viewer will engage with the advert. Focus on getting your message across in short sentences. Choose your words carefully.

 4. Prioritize Visible Content

There's often lots happening on a modern website, but not all of it needs to happen at once. Prioritize the initial visible content, often known as the content "above the fold"  which is seen before the visitor has to scroll down the page. The browser isn't being overworked and the server will load the remaining content efficiently whilst the visitor is viewing the prioritized content.

5. Use Legible Fonts

It should go without saying that you need to make sure that the size of the words on your page is legible. But it can be overlooked that mobile devices can scale down pages and make the text very hard to read. Use a viewport to control the width and scaling of your pages and you'll be certain that they'll scale properly on mobile devices.

6. Images 

Images can really help bring an ad to life, but make sure any images you use are optimized so that they're quick to load and don't cause problems for those using mobile devices to view your ad.

7. Video 

Video is increasingly in use on job listings and is a great way to better engage with your viewer. But  make the video available via a link rather than trying to embed it directly in the ad, as this will cause delays to page loading and make the ad slow to load and be seen.

8. Block Quotes

Drawing attention to a particular part of your text, for emphasis or to highlight a call to action or a quote is a great way to add interest and boost engagement. A block quotation is set off from the main text as a paragraph or block of text, and can additionally be in a contrasting, italicised or bold font. But, don't overdo block quotes or their impact will be lost.

Keep these eight tips in mind when writing your next job ad and you'll have more chance of winning the war for talent.

Published on: May 31, 2018