Take Five: On Writing A Better Job Description

Written by
Clara Finnigan

Take five minutes and read five practical steps to help you level up your job hunting or hiring strategy.

A job description is your first opportunity to engage with new talent and introduce them to your company. With over 200 creative opportunities on If You Could Jobs it’s important to make your advert stand out. Before you hit publish read our five recommendations for attracting our community of job hunters to your latest opportunity.

Think carefully about the job title

You want to choose a title that’s familiar and recognisable to the reader, so instantly they’ll be able to understand what the role is and whether it’s up their street. Also, think carefully about the main priorities of the role you wish to advertise when selecting a job title. Job hunters can be deterred from viewing an advert if the advert lists more than one job title, for example "studio manager/ project assistant".

Include a salary bracket

Our recent insight report into what’s important to job hunters we found out that salary Individuals were much more likely (>95%) to apply for jobs that transparently advertised the salary, rather than job postings that described the salary as undisclosed (50%). So we also highly recommend including a salary or salary bracket to your job advert when possible.

Address your reader

We recommend using "you", "we" and "our" pronouns throughout your advert, rather than referring to ‘the candidate’. Address your reader directly using sentences like, “You come up with new, unique ideas, and work with others who do the same”.

Include a diversity and inclusion statement

Our latest insight report also revealed that most individuals (>60%) are more likely to apply to a job if the advertisement promotes equal employment opportunities, family friendly working arrangements or actively encouraged applications from BAME and/or disabled applicants. We recommend using statements such as these:

“We actively encourage BAME and disabled applicants and value the positive impact that diversity has on our organisation.”

“We are committed to equal employment opportunities regardless of race, colour, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, citizenship, marital status, disability, gender, gender identity or expression, or veteran status.”

“We offer family friendly, flexible working arrangements.”

Communicate a timeline

A clear theme in our insight report revealed that communication is key in the application process. Job hunters are keen that employers respect the time and effort that goes into an application. An anonymous senior survey respondent said “We’re anxious to hear how it went and whether we’ve got the job we wanted, so be kind to us, keep us in the loop”

A way to keep your applicant in the loop from the outset is to include a clear overview of the entire job application process in the advertisement to include dates, number of rounds and an overview of tasks involved.

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