Creating an Online Recruitment Ad that Works

July 13th, 2012

During periods of high unemployment, almost any advertisement for an open position will draw responses from dozens, if not hundreds of applicants. Generating interest in your ad is easy, no matter what it says or where you decide to post it. The challenge of recruiting doesn’t lie in collecting applications. It lies in finding the right person for the job in the fastest and most cost-effective way. A hundred resumes may seem like a positive response, but are you collecting the right kind of resumes? Or do these resumes just represent hours of review and guess-work as you try to identify appropriate matches in a huge, generic pile?

A carefully targeted ad may lead to fewer applications, but in the long run it can help you save time, effort, and money. If you choose your words correctly, your ad can make the first two or three rounds of cuts so you don’t have to. By the time you’re ready to review your applications, you’ll know that most of them come from candidates who have a basic understanding of your business model, the job requirements, your company culture, and your expectations.

The least helpful ads offer only the broadest information. They use phrases like “Must have experience”, and provide a straightforward list of the tasks the employee will face each day. If your ad looks like this, tighten your message by taking the following steps:

  1. Envision your target audience. Imagine the candidates you’d like to interview. Are these people friendly, serious, quirky individuals, corporate robots? Are they young and fresh-faced, or mid-career professionals? What approach will they take to this work? What will they think of your workplace culture?
  2. Adjust the tone and language of your post. Imagine you’re speaking to an ideal candidate. If your perfect candidate is warm and enthusiastic, your post should be too.
  3. Finally, include as much detail as you can about what your company does and what you’ll expect from the person in this position. Provide a sense of the big picture surrounding this role and be clear about your expectations regarding education and years of specific experience. Don’t draw applications from people you know you can’t accept. If the employee needs to speak French, have an outgoing personality, enjoy repetitive tasks, or live in the local area, now is the time to say so.

For more information on creating an online recruitment ad that really works, contact Personnel Services Unlimited for more details.

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