Recruiters face a lot of challenges when working to attract the best job candidates to each new role they are trying to fill. Many recruiters will put their faith in the latest new HR Technology product, such as their Applicant Tracking Systems, to sift out the best fit for the job.
However, many recruitment experts are now saying that the best way to attract the right candidates is to go old-school and turn their attention to something that has been an integral part of the recruitment process for years before modern technology came in to play – the job description.
Recruiters tend to take the job description a little too much for granted. After all, why try to reinvent the wheel, right? But the job description is key to attracting the sort of applicants you want. Get the job description wrong and the whole recruitment process will be become very hard work.
Setting yourself apart from your competition
When you look at the recruitment process from the eyes of a job seeker, most candidates will have seen potentially dozens of similar job adverts before coming across yours. What is it about your job description that makes you different? What elements do you include that makes you rise above the rest to capture the attention of a candidate, whether they are passively keeping an eye of what jobs are out there, or are the more determined ones that are looking to change jobs as soon as possible.
Let’s take a look at some ways to positively boost and polish up your job description so that looks good and captures the eye of your perfect candidates.
Set your goals
Your job description has a goal of attracting qualified and experienced candidates. But a lot of recruiters have fallen into a routine or pattern of drafting out the same sort of generic job description without giving much thought about making it individual and inviting. Obviously, you will list the main requirements of the job – the skills and qualifications needed to inform the candidate of what you are looking for. However, many recruiters stop there and forget to motivate candidates into applying. You need to include some positive and enticing details.
Structuring your job description
With your job goals in mind, you should look at properly structuring the job description to help lead candidates in to reading the whole thing. This involves breaking down the description into defined sections:
A strong introduction that includes two or three positive sentences about the job. This should cover the broader meaning of the job and how it fits into the company, or why it is an important role.
Rather than going on to list the job requirements, instead draw in the candidates further by highlighting why they should consider joining the company. List the perks and benefits of the role and how valuable the role is to the company brand and core values.
Now it is time to list the main duties and responsibilities of the role and the qualifications needed. Try to do this in a short bulleted list of about five or six bullets to keep the flow going and not to overwhelm the candidate with too much text.
There is absolutely no need to list absolutely every single task that would be involved in taking on this role. These details can be left to the interview and discussing them can be a great way to engage with a candidate to help with your assessment of them.
You can now finish up your job description by giving a more in-depth explanation of the company and what it does. Finish with a strong call to action to tell the candidate what to do next.
Word count is important
Many recruitment experts agree that overwhelming candidates with too much text can be off-putting. This is especially the case with browsing candidates that may only be keeping an eye on what opportunities are out there and would jump-ship if the right job description popped up.
The most effective word count is between 500 to 750 words. This length isn’t too challenging to read to the end and gives you enough flexibility to include all the key points of the job and why candidates should apply.
Getting your job description noticed
Having SEO friendly titles within you job description is the best way to boost your job advert to the top of the list for candidate keyword searches. Remember that you need your job advert to show up in job searches, so include SEO keywords in your titles that your candidates are most likely to search for.
Polishing up your job description is a great way to revitalise your recruitment process at very minimal costs to your company. If you feel your recruitment process is becoming a bit routine, then going back to basics and focussing on the grass-roots of your recruitment methods could be the key to attracting the best possible candidates to your job adverts.