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Why NOT Do Your Job Ads Right?

by
Jeff Dickey-Chasins
Apr 13, 2011, 5:20 am ET

You see them everywhere: job ads that are little more than corporate gobbledygook, pulled from a job description more interested in covering legal points than communicating with humans.

Ask yourself: as a recruiter, is this really the best you can do?

I would suggest that, in fact, you can do better — and that doing better will bring you great rewards.

In the fall session of ERE’s conference, we will be tackling the challenge of creating compelling, enticing, and effective job ads. We’ll be looking at some of the best examples — and examining why the bad ones are so awful. We’ll talk about why the art of creating a great job ad transcends any technological changes, be they social media, job boards, or ATSs, and how a great job ad lowers your cost per hire and drives up the quality of your candidates.

But September is a long time from now, and I really want to get started — so I’m making an open call for the best and worst job ads you’ve seen (or even created yourself).

  • Is the language impenetrable?
  • Is it impossible to tell what the duties are?
  • Does the company inadvertently reveal more about itself than perhaps it should have?
  • Is the language so hip it’s square?
  • Does it leave out critical information?
  • Does it exceed the length of a typical novella?

Post your favorite ‘best’ and ‘worst’ in the comments below. Who knows? Perhaps we can line up some prizes for the best (worst?) submissions!

PS: If you have an ad that produced great results but doesn’t look like it should’ve — let us know! There is almost always some reason to the rhyme.

This article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to offer specific legal advice. You should consult your legal counsel regarding any threatened or pending litigation.

  1. Morgan Hoogvelt

    I have 2 all time favorite ads that I consistently see on TV on a daily basis. Yet, every time I see the ads, I am always amazed at the message and creativity behind them.

    My award(s) for best go to the U.S. Army and United States Marine Corps. I haven’t seen anything better.

  2. Ross Clennett

    One of my favourite blogging topics, Jeff. You can view my half dozen posts, with specific examples (mostly bad, some good), at http://rossclennett.blogspot.com/search/label/advertising

  3. Kelly Blokdijk, SPHR

    Anyone who has ever had to recruit for one, will tell you that high-quality receptionists can be tough to find. As the first and possibly last impression, this person provides the “face” of your biz. Here is a JD that I think is does a decent job of defining what that role is all about.

    ~~~~

    Part-time Receptionist / Office Clerk

    A vibrant (LOCATION) business is seeking an upbeat, helpful professional for part-time reception coverage and office administration functions.

    In this diverse role, the selected candidate will assist in delivering positive experiences for all guests, visitors, vendors and staff through warm welcomes, magic moments and fond farewells. Having a polished, professional image and courteous demeanor along with solid proactive work ethic and top-notch verbal and written communication abilities will enable the receptionist to create great impressions through each interaction and task.

    In addition to providing friendly greetings and assistance to visitors, the receptionist will lend support to multiple department leaders by performing ongoing general office clerical and administrative duties. Using standard office equipment and business software applications including MS Office products, email and proprietary database systems, the receptionist will be involved in various daily activities serving the business and its clients.

    These activities may include, but are not limited to:

     Responding in a polite and timely manner to phone, email and onsite visitor inquiries
     Ordering and stocking office supplies and monitoring existing inventory
     Processing and distributing incoming and outgoing mail and packages
     Data entry into spreadsheet files, online databases or other systems
     Using common software applications to produce text and graphic based communications
     Filing, photocopying, printing and organizing documents
     Preparing necessary supplies and creating or compiling materials for meetings and events
     Maintaining an orderly, organized and efficient work atmosphere

    Calm, composed, service-focused and detail-oriented individuals are most effective in this fast-paced environment as priorities are constantly shifting and attention must be routinely redistributed amongst all areas of responsibility. The receptionist being visible to all in the facility is expected to maintain a flexible attitude to address issues, questions, requests or complaints as they arise. They will also provide accurate direction and information to walk-in visitors as well as notifying appropriate team members when scheduled appointments arrive.

    Preferences:

     Conservative, professional appearance suitable for interface with an upscale clientele in a traditional business environment
     Comfort and competence using technology tools including proficiency with MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher (a plus), email and Internet-supported systems
     Exceptional verbal and written communication skills including proper grammar, spelling, communication required for business correspondence and in-person conversations
     Ability to learn quickly, work independently and effectively manage time with minimal direction
     Employment background with heavy customer-service focus is a must! (Previous #### industry experience beneficial, but not mandatory)

    Other position details:

     Part-time – approximately # hours per week
     Schedule and hours may vary to cover weekdays and weekends based on business needs
     Pay rate: $-$ per hour
     Information here is representative of typical accountabilities, but may not include complete scope of role

    Application steps:

    If interested and qualified, please send your resume along with a detailed (required) cover letter in the body of your email outlining your relevant experience and describing your ability to immediately contribute value in this organization’s operation. Due to the high volume of applications received, only those closely matching the above criteria will be considered. Reply to: contact(at)companyname.com

    ~~~

    Thoughts?

    BTW: I concur w/ Morgan that the military has some compelling TV ads.

    KB

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