The key to good advertising is grabbing the right people's attention. If you are seeking a high caliber, hard-working and knowledgeable candidate then your job post needs to be short, one sentence paragraphs and bullet points to convey your content. Try beginning each bullet point with a verb, as this implies to the candidate that you are getting straight to the point.

You may also consider using color coding, graphics and interesting typography in order to alert a potential candidate to your advertisement.

An effective job advertisement is brief, clear and to the point. You can achieve much of this with the format you choose to use. As many of your prospective candidates for a role will be job seeking online using smartphones, tablets and their laptops during their commute or after work, brevity is key.


Be supportive, NOT demanding

After analysing a variety of job ads, researchers identified two different types:

1. Demanding – Job ads that tell the candidate what skills and experience they need to have in order to be able to do the job satisfactorily.

2. Supportive – Job ads that told the candidate what they’ll need to do in the role and how their organisation is going to help them do it.

After testing the success of both sets of job ads, researchers found that the job ads classified as supportive received 3 times more applicants and higher quality applications than those job ads classified as demanding.


Demanding job ads might look something like this:

“The successful applicant will have excellent written and verbal communication skills and be a motivated, self-starter who is able to complete tasks in a timely manner.”


Supportive job ad might look something like this:

“As a core member of the Project Management team, you will be expected to work autonomously and deliver on project phases on time and on budget. We will help you achieve your goals by continuous professional development and regular career progression sessions.”


To increase the number of people who view your job, make the job title appealing.

Take note of the specific language used in the supportive ad above. Instead of calling the candidate “the applicant” as the demanding ad does, the supportive ad refers to the candidate as “you”. It puts the candidate, front and centre. Instead of being about a faceless applicant, the job ad is now about you.