recruitment tips

How to Boost Applicants with the

Perfect Job Ad

We’ve put together the ultimate guide to writing your next job ad, so you can skyrocket your applicant pool with quality candidates.

With a higher apply-to-hire rate than traditional job boards, at Placed we pride ourselves on knowing exactly what candidates look for. Not only do we regularly host Placed panels where we discuss with real job-seekers exactly what modern candidates need, but our app data also shows us which job listings get the most traction, giving us valuable insight into what makes a stand-out job ad.

It’s understandable that writing elaborate job descriptions is probably not high on your priority list. But the great thing is, you don’t need to be a novelist, poet or English lit grad to write a great job posting. With these simple considerations, you can write an unmissable job ad that will boost your applicants, fill your roles faster, and put you ahead of the majority of employers on the market:

1. Keep the job title short and straightforward

Jobseekers will be searching for commonly known job titles, and they particularly seek those that sum up the role in the simplest terms.

Not only do simple and well-known titles attract candidates, but unclear or lengthy job titles actively deter candidates. In a recent Placed panel, job-seekers stated they would not bother reading a job description if they could not first relate to the title.

So, importantly, keep this short, sweet and exactly to the point, to ensure you aren’t damaging your applicant pool before they’ve even read about your role. There is no need to add anything else other than the job title here.

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2. Ensure the job description is informative and positive

Sometimes it can be easy to forget that when posting job adverts, you are essentially selling the vacancy and opportunity to your targeted audience. After all, it is an advert! So it’s important to spend a little time making this attractive and informative for the candidate.

The highest performing job ads on Placed are often divided into distinct sections: an intro, daily responsibilities, experience/skills required, benefits and next steps. Here, we’ll walk you through each of these sections:

1. Introduction:

This is simply a quick intro to the role and why it has come about. Be sure to keep this upbeat and positive – for example “Due to continuous expansions and promotions, we are now looking to hire our next Chef de Partie to join our team at XXX”. This shows off the great opportunity for career progression whilst explaining your need for the position.

2. Daily responsibilities:

Help the candidate to picture a day in the job by bullet pointing the relevant duties. Keep this brief and straightforward. For example:

  • Greeting, seating and welcoming our guests
  • Helping to deliver and clear dishes
  • Completing the set-up of the restaurant and supporting the clean down
  • Reporting any customer queries to the Assistant Manager

3. Relevant skills and experience:

This is where you get to state exactly what is a non negotiable. List the skills and experience that candidates must have, but only if they are vitally important.

It is also worth considering how much experience is really required to execute the role, and whether you would be prepared to offer training to those who are less experienced.

If no previous experience is required, you can easily boost applicants by explicitly stating this. There are plenty of eager, high-quality candidates who may have little to no experience, but are keen to learn and develop. Don’t lose them from your applicant pool!

4. Benefits:

Always list the benefits your business offers to its staff. Often, the list of benefits is one of the first things candidates will look at when viewing a job advert. This doesn’t have to be detailed – it can be as simple as a list of clear bullet points. For example:

  • 50% Staff discount across all our restaurants
  • Monthly bonuses
  • Day off on your birthday!
  • Free gym membership
  • Flexible work hours
  • Regular team socials

It is worth considering what unique benefits or workplace perks you offer that competitors might not – these are the ones to emphasise the most!

5. Next Steps:

“What happens next when I apply?” All candidates want to know what happens next once they have applied. Will they get a phone call? Will they get an email? Will they be invited to a trial shift?

Explaining the next steps of the application process will not just help to put the candidate at ease, but it showcases your brand as honest, transparent and communicative – putting you miles ahead of the majority of employers who do not get back to candidates after applying. If candidates know they won’t be left in the dark after applying, they’ll be more inclined to apply.

For example: “Apply today and our recruitment team will give you a call within 24 hours to discuss next steps”

3. Ask yourself “Would I apply for this job?”

Finally, reflect on your job advert, and put yourself in the shoes of a prospective applicant. The golden question is “Would I apply for this job?” – why or why not? Does it lack description? Are there no benefits mentioned? Does it feel empty or have a bland tone? Remember, if you wouldn’t apply for it, many candidates wouldn’t either.