When it comes to writing adverts for a new vacancy or even writing the job description itself, what should we really put in them? There is very practical advice and plenty of templates available that could be followed… but what is going to inspire the best possible person to apply and accept the role in your company?

Let’s starts with the realistic truth about the role; outlining the specifics of what is to be done day in day out including the good, the bad and (some of) the ugly can be beneficial – honesty is the best policy. Then there’s the job title. With so many options all reflecting the same responsibilities… you do really need to ask what job title would attract the right person while continuing to be consistent within the HR/Organisation structure.

It is easy to be distracted when writing an advert: making sure you use the right keywords so your advert appears top of the list; ensuring you don’t over sell or undersell the role; do you put a salary or not?

So with all that in mind let’s start with the fact that at the end of the process, the key is attracting the right person for the position. Here are some things we think you should consider:

Title – the title has to reflect the roles and responsibilities – not just when they start but in 6 months or 12 months’ time. Also, if you want to attract an experienced HR Officer with drive and determination, why would they apply for another HR officer role? Wouldn’t they be looking for the next step?

Content – if I was looking for a new opportunity, I’d want to know who I was working with, what the possible ‘client group’ would look like, the culture of the team/organisation, but more importantly, what achievements would I write on my CV in 2 or 3 years’ time. Above all, keep it to the point; long wordy advertisements lose interest. Make the layout easy to read and attention grabbing, it’s about quality attraction not quantity.

In summary, an effective advert or job description will grab attention and stimulate interest. You want people to read it and think, I really want that job.

Here’s not what to do…."(Insert company name) has an immediate need for…"

Is this supposed to make a job-seeker's heart beat faster? What opening line would you use to attract the best possible talent to the team rather than losing them to a more thought-through advert listed on the same job-board?

Michael Boer is a Consultant in London