A well-crafted job ad is a key tool in finding the right person for the role—so it pays to get a candidate perspective. Candidates name salary, type of work, job description, location and industry as the top five factors they use to decide if a job is right for them, SEEK research reveals.
We spoke to expert recruiter Kara Atkinson about why these factors matter, and how best to include them in your job ads.
84% of candidates ranked knowing a job’s salary as one of the most important factors in assessing whether a job was right for them key to deciding on a role.
“Your employees drive your business forward, so if their income impacts their stability in some way, that's going to impact their productivity,” Atkinson says. “That means their salary is directly linked to your company's success.”
Many candidates will use a salary filter to refine their job search results as well as using the advertised salary range to work out whether a role is a good fit. Being upfront with salary saves time for you and for candidates.
Tip: Include a salary or salary range in your job ad. If you’re concerned your salary isn’t competitive, include other benefits such as flexible work policies, gym membership or staff discounts.
Type of work
The majority of candidates (84%) rated the type of work—for instance part time or full time—as a high priority when sizing up a role. In particular, baby boomers and females were more likely to rank this as important.
“The concept of retirement is changing,” Atkinson says. “Today’s workers have a much more fluid vision of when and how they want to retire.”
Atkinson says many women want balance. “They want to ‘lean in’, but they want to be able to tuck their kids in at night,” she says. “They don’t want to feel exhausted all the time.”
Tip: Highlight in your job ad whether the position is part time, full time or if it’s negotiable.
More than two thirds of candidates (75%) rated the job description as the third most important factor in weighing up a role. Again, baby boomers and females were more likely to rate this as very important.
A detailed job description provides structure and clarity for candidates by outlining tasks and responsibilities and setting a reference point for performance measurement. “This enables pay and grading systems to be structured logically and fairly,” Atkinson says.
Tip: Include clear information about what the candidate will do in the role. Break up the text with paragraphs, sub-headings and bullet points.
Next, 74% of candidates rated location—for example rural or urban—highly. “Location goes hand in glove with flexibility,” Atkinson says. “Commute time is often directly calculated by candidates as time away from their families.”
Atkinson is not surprised that higher numbers of women rank location as important. “I often have conversations with women who say ‘I don’t care what the role is, just get me close to home,’ ” she says.
Tip: Ensure you include the location where the candidate will be working
Just over half of candidates (57%) ranked industry as fifth most important in deciding whether a job was right for them. “Most skill sets are highly transferable,” Atkinson says.
Tip: Be open to candidates who may not have industry experience but may have a transferrable skill set.
By including these five factors in your job ads, you’ll put yourself in the best position for attracting your ideal candidates.
Source: Independent research conducted by Nature on behalf of SEEK. Interviewing 4,800 Australians annually.