How to write a job spec

How to write a job spec

The job market is running hot and it's tough to attract good new staff. You need to write a job listing that will help your role stand out in the crowd.

Here are three tips for writing a more appealing job ad:

1. Sell the role up front

  • Instead of beginning with a job description or a list of requirements, sell the role first. Think about what makes the job most appealing; it might be the industry, location, salary or perks.
  • Spell out the advantages as clearly as you can, with the numbers if possible, early on in the listing. That will grab people's attention and encourage them to read on.

2. Keep it short and simple

  • Longer job ads, packed with jargon, can feel like they're making your business seem more impressive. But if candidates have hundreds of jobs to choose from, they might simply look at a dense wall of text and move to the next advertisements.
  • Aim for straightforward, readable language without unnecessary words or repetition. Keep your job listing at a maximum of 700 words - any longer and it starts to look like an off-putting wall of text.

3. Avoid meaningless clichés

  • Almost all companies think they have an 'amazing team' and a 'fast-paced environment'. All jobs call for a 'self-starter' or a 'superstar' with 'excellent communication skills'. Everyone says they're offering a 'competitive salary'.
  • Instead of using these meaningless phrases, be more specific - provide the actual salary, for instance. Describe the job, the team and the environment clearly and accurately. This helps the candidate get a genuine understanding of what the role is all about.

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