From education to employment

How to structure your job advert

With the ongoing skills shortages in the education industry, attracting the right candidates is more important than ever. However, structuring a job advert can be a difficult process; you want to shout about the job, without overloading candidates with information. Below, we help you out by providing some tips on how you can structure your advert to appeal to education candidates.

Write the perfect title

The title is the first piece of information candidates will see. It needs to hit the mark and encourage them to read on. So don’t try to make the name too different in an attempt to stand out – this could have the opposite effect.

Most job seekers will have an idea of the position they’re searching for. Therefore, if the name you’ve chosen sounds strange then it might put them off. So, if the role is for a classroom assistant you should avoid something too different such as, ‘classroom wizard’.

Remember to think about what your candidates will be searching for. Your unusual name for a position won’t get pulled up on a job search if you’re not using the right words.

Often job adverts will also make the mistake of including unnecessary information in the title too. Details such as ‘part-time’, ‘full-time’, ‘urgently needed’ or salary information shouldn’t be put in the title. This needs to go in the main body of the advert.

Include the right information

After the title, you will usually have information such as the salary, location and organisation. After this, you can start expanding on the details. Usually you would begin with a catchy introduction to your organisation explaining who you are and why it’s a great place to work. Then, you would continue with the role your organisation is looking for and explain a bit more about it.

It’s important to break up the information into bullet points and smaller paragraphs for easier skim reading. To do this you could bullet point the next sections into ‘roles and responsibilities’ then ‘person specification’.

Finish the advert with any company rewards or benefits you provide (such as holiday allowance and sick pay). Finally, include the steps or instructions for applying to the role.

Master the length

Mastering the length of your advert is a tricky one. It can’t be too long at the risk of boring candidates. Equally, anything too short may miss out essential information and not sell the role properly. The exact length will depend on the type of role – positions that are more senior may require additional information, others may not.

As a guide, the typical length of a job advert will be one to two paragraphs of information about the organisation and the role. Alongside this, it should include five to six bullet points under each section (responsibilities, experience, benefits).

Ask for the right requirements

It can be tempting to ask for a wide range of experience and qualifications. However, it’s important that you’re fair and can justify everything you ask for. After all, you don’t want to deter a great candidate because they’re missing a qualification you don’t actually need for the role. You need to sell the role to candidates and have a welcoming tone that encourages people to apply.

Understandably, with some positions this might be non-negotiable. For example, if you’re hiring a teacher, you need someone with a teaching qualification. But asking for years of experience might be negotiable for the right candidate.

As a tip, decide on the desirable and essential criteria before writing your job advert. This allows you to see what qualifications or experience are actually needed for the position. You could then break up your criteria into these categories on the job advert you post. This will make sure you don’t discourage candidates who are a suitable fit but don’t meet every requirement.

In summary

Structuring your job advert is important to get right so that you attract the best candidates to your organisation. This is more important than ever, especially considering the continuous skills shortages within the education sector. So keep the above information in mind when you’re writing your advert.

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