How to write a legitimate job advert

This is resulting in loss of money and confidence for innocent job seekers and it’s important that businesses take action to promote safety in the recruitment process and ensure that their job adverts look legitimate.

This year, we’ve partnered with SAFERjobs, the e-crime non-profit organisation which operates in association with the Met Police, as keeping job hunters safe online is one of our top priorities. Below, I explain what businesses need to do to create a job advert that is compelling and attractive to candidates, whilst also looking genuine.

Writing a compelling job advert

A job advert is the first insight that a candidate has into your company and your brand in general. Our recent research reveals how job hunters ranked a “clear and concise job description” as a top priority when looking for a new job, and a further 20.4 per cent admitted that an unclear job description would put them off applying to a position full stop. This means that crafting a job advert that candidates will read in full is crucial if you want to secure the top talent.

That said, the increase and risk of fake job adverts means that it’s no longer an option to sensationalise the job title or heading, as candidates are savvy, and may actually see this as a scam. For example, using a title such as “no experience required” is no longer appropriate; this is a well-known phrase used by scammers, so even if your posting is legitimate, it could flag alarm bells for candidates. Including the key details such as location, role and salary, and presenting them in a compelling and exciting way is crucial, and should result in job hunters engaging with your business and applying to your roles.

Making your advert legitimate

Job scammers are savvy, and use a variety of methods to lure in vulnerable job hunters. By being aware of the signs to look out for, businesses can ensure that they don’t make mistakes, and either fall for a scam themselves, or post an advert that looks like a hoax. Signs of a job scam could include poor spelling, asking for money, and fake contact details, so the key areas to be wary of when writing your job posts include:

Salary: Many candidates will be put off by salaries that may seem unrealistic, or too low. Give a rough idea of what it might be but make sure it actually matches to the requirements and experience needed for the role.

Experience necessary: A lot of job scams will say “no experience necessary”, so giving candidates an idea of the type of experience that they need for the role in question is important. For example, what skills, qualifications or attributes are you looking for in your ideal applicant?

Role responsibilities: List up to eight main tasks that will be expected of the applicant and relate these to a business objective so they can see how they will fit into the company’s plans.

Detail the interview process: If the reader is interested, what are the next steps that you want them to take? Including a contact email or phone number as well as a reference number is useful to track where your application came from. You should also give them an idea of when they should expect to hear back.

Background of your business: If your company isn’t a well-known brand name you’ll need to provide an explanation of what kind of industry you are in – but don’t feel like you have to give too much information. The candidate will do their own research if they want to find out more.

Location: Giving specific information about where the job is based is key. Typical job scams that attract young people will often state the location is ‘anywhere’ or ‘work from home’. Being specific and making sure your location matches up to what is on your website as well is important.

Taking steps to make every job advert appear legitimate and appealing to candidates is crucial, and it’s more important than ever to promote online safety amongst job hunters. With the rise in popularity of online recruitment and job sites, it’s increasingly easy for scammers to hide amongst genuine postings, so making note of the signs and avoiding them when crafting a job advert should be a priority.

Lee Biggins is founder and managing director of CV-Library.

Image: Shutterstock

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