How to write a job advert: Top tips for recruiters

You may not be hiring many – if any – candidates right now. When the market returns, though, you’ll need to know how to get the most out of your job adverts.

We teamed up with Katie Emerton, Client Response Manager at CV Library, to share her top tips for writing a winning job advert that helps you stand out and drives more applications to your vacancies.

Here are our key takeaways from the recent webinar. You can also watch it now on demand for all the relevant data and best practice examples.

Get the basics right

  • Make the Job Title as simple as possible and use terminology that applicants will search for. Do not add salary and location in the job title, these should be added to the appropriate fields within the advert. Did you know that job titles of between one and three key words outperform longer titles in terms of applications by 40%!
  • Ensure the Location of the role is accurate. 85% of candidates count on this in their search criteria.
  • 78% of candidates look out for salary information in a role. So try to be as realistic as possible on the Salary you quote. If the salary hasn’t been decided on yet and you have to use an estimated salary range, use realistic numbers. You do not want to go all the way through the recruitment process and then lose a candidate when a salary doesn’t meet expectations.

What every job advert should include:

A clear, concise and well laid out job advert will get better results, and ideally should follow this format:

  1. Introduce the company in one or two sentences
  2. List day to day role responsibilities using between four and six bullet points
  3. List key requirements such as qualifications and skills using between four and six bullet points
  4. Make your advert stand out from similar roles by adding any perks and benefits. It could be the deal maker!

The optimum length of a job advert should be 300-800 words long.  Adverts that stick to this length result in five times as many applications as adverts that use shorter or longer descriptions.

Tip: Repeating the job title between four and eight times in the description will help with job rankings in job board searches.

Putting candidates off

  • 61.8% of job hunters say they have high expectations when looking and applying for jobs. Candidates search on a strict criteria based chiefly on job salary and what type of company they want to work for.
  • 20% would be put off by an unclear job description
  • 91.6% say that they look for key criteria in job descriptions in this order: location, salary and job title.
  • 51.7% wouldn’t apply for a job if it didn’t mention these aspects.
  • Avoid confusing job titles, jumbled text, too much jargon, bad grammar and spelling and unclear call to actions.

Getting the most out of a job advert

  • Place your advert on your own website or career site and check that it is optimised for mobile. 61% of CV Library’s traffic comes from mobile.
  • Using video and imagery and promoting the workplace will bring the role to life.
  • Consider improving the visibility of your advert on job boards with extra branding or pay for performance.
  • Post clear and engaging social media messaging for your roles.

Acknowledge the current situation

Be as transparent as possible within the job description. Acknowledge the current situation with coronavirus, and help allay fears that applicants may have.

Here are some excellent examples from CV Library.

Finally…

Remember that candidate communication is key throughout the process. 97.1% of candidates say they’re more likely to accept a job if they have a positive route to hire experience.

Remember, these adverts are the first impression a candidate will have of the role and company – and first impressions count!

Discover our upcoming webinars here and feel free to download our free technology partner ebook for how our partners can help your recruitment business further.


Thanks to Katie Emerton from CV LibraryCV-Library is the UK’s leading independent job board, and an expert in recruitment. CV library have over 15 million CVs on their database, and 795k jobs were advertised between January and March 2020.

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