Attract top-tier applicants

August 10, 2012 at 9:00 am Leave a comment

Recruiting top-notch employees is no easy task. Sure, a mediocre job ad might garner applications, but don’t be surprised when those applicants turn out to be mediocre themselves. Raise the bar and attract the caliber of applicants you really want, by following this advice from Hire Exceptional Employees:

Write an effective job ad

Most job postings today don’t capture potential hires’ attention. They mimic classified ad copy, or worse, they use bureaucratic position descriptions repurposed for the Web. Most people who respond to those kinds of postings are desperate for work.

The last thing you want to do when writing a job posting is to lure only those people who apply to every job that comes close to matching their skills or interests. What you do want to write is an electronic sales brochure that tells top talent why they should work for you.

Job postings must be persuasive and powerful. An easy way to do that is to follow the SABCS template. SABCS stands for:

  • Summary. Spark candidates’ interest in the first four lines of your job postings by addressing three critical elements. First, describe why your job would be a dream job for them. Next, tell them why your organization is a dream employer. Then state the salary range because there has to be a financial advantage.
  • Advantages. Describe the responsibilities of the job, but do so in a way that answers the question “What’s in it for me?” That means describing details such as:
    1. What candidates will be able to do and learn in the job.
    2. What they can hope to accomplish.
    3. Whom they will be able to work with.
    4. How they will be able to advance.
  • Benefits. Go beyond providing information about basic health and dental coverage. Also list benefits that will pique the interest of your target demographic. Examples: Recent college graduates may be interested in graduate school tuition reimbursement. And baby boomers might want to know about any child care or elder care benefits your organization offers.
  • Capabilities. Describe the specific skills, knowledge and abilities the candidates will need to succeed in the job. Be sure to use precise wording that pinpoints specific skills. Example: “Experience with Excel software a necessity.” That kind of language is much stronger than simply saying candidates must have computer skills.
  • Strong call to action. Give candidates the option of applying through multiple channels such as over the Web, via snail mail, by phone or by fax. Provide an easy-to-complete application form.
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