3rd September 2019 | Spencer Symmons
A recent survey has found that potential candidates can be put off from applying to roles as soon as they read the job advert. While it may seem like a small element, used just at the beginning of the job-seeking process, poor wording is diverting 50 per cent of job seekers away from roles they could be perfect for. So, what can recruiters do to avoid the trap?
It’s natural to want to stand out in the sea of job postings out there, and normally when it comes to advertisements, the more unique the wording the better – but therein can lie the problem. Using words such as ‘ninja’ and ‘guru’ are more likely to attract male candidates than females, meaning that women may be put off from applying. While it’s not the intention to isolate part of your talent pool, just a single use of a certain word could be the difference between an interested applicant and somebody clicking the backspace. So, instead of using these phrases, there are several ways in which an applicant’s skills can be described in a more attractive way. A ‘ninja’ becomes a ‘highly skilled individual’ and a ‘guru’, a ‘thought leader’.
Another way in which job ad wording could be improved is just by getting to the point more quickly. Using poetic prose can help to build a picture for potential candidates but being too vague about what the role entails could mean that candidates apply without having a real understanding of what the position requires. Be careful of filling a job post with too many buzzwords and instead use clear and concise language to detail the opportunity.
In addition, if an individual wants to work within the industry, they will have, at the very least, a basic understanding of what the role should entail. Therefore, recruiters should be specific about the requirements and avoid listing generic qualities such as ‘multi-tasking’ and ‘self-motivated’. Using such words becomes a waste of time for those looking to fill the roles as well as those looking to apply for them.
The level of seniority within the roles you are recruiting for will dictate the type of wording used within the job advertisement. For example, a Milkround study found that a staggering 71 per cent of graduates actually feel unqualified when reading a job ad with abbreviations in the description. Of course, if you are hiring for a much more advanced role, then this is something they should already have under their belt in day-to-day use.
A job ad could be the first contact a candidate ever has with your business, so it’s imperative that these posts are working in your favour. From getting the right image to using proper grammar, everything within your job ad should be carefully curated to attract the best and brightest candidates. Don’t let poor wording put them off from applying in the first place.
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