The Advertisement

The production, style and placement of the advertisement for the job involve a specialised skill. It is a very expensive activity and in larger companies will probably be handled by the HR manager together with an advertising agency or even by an outside recruitment consultancy. Whichever is the case, it is imperative a Manager makes sure that what appears in the text of the advertisement describes as precisely as possible the sort of person that is required and the job which is to be done. Later on there will be the task of sorting through the application papers. This is arduous enough without the added complication of attracting applications from inappropriately qualified people.

Job advertisements are usually structured to cover seven essential elements.

1. Image - of the company

2. Job - what the job entails

3. Need - why the company needs to recruit

4. Opportunity - career opportunity for the applicant

5. Profile - what is required in the applicant

6. Reward - salaries and other benefits

7. Application - how to apply

Projecting the right image of the company helps attract suitable candidates and this is often assisted by the style of the advert; its size, colour and graphics and whether it is sober or jazzy. This is why this aspect is best left to the professional graphics designers. Simply giving a job title in the advertisement is insufficient; and it must say briefly what the job holder will actually do, as outlined in the job definition described in Section A, 1.2.1. Why the company needs to recruit is important since it indicates whether the company is expanding and creating new jobs or roles within the organisation. The geographical location must also be stressed as this has an important bearing on attracting candidates. Opportunities for career development are the concern of most applicants for professional jobs. The opportunity should be outlined in a realistic and unambiguous way; it is no good saying "the sky is the limit". Without providing a profile of the person likely to fill the post you will get quite unsuitable people applying for the job. It has become very common to see comments such as " salary and benefits commensurate with the post" or even more obscurely

"attractive packages". Whilst in advertisements from major companies this is satisfactory, since a candidate would expect first class remuneration and benefits from these organisations, in most other cases it is much better to state a salary range provided this is not too wide to be meaningless. Finally, the advertisement should contain clear instructions on how to apply; is it by an application form, in writing, by telephone or by e-mail to a named person; will a separate CV and names of referees be required etc.

Two typical examples of job advertisements for professionally qualified personnel that have appeared recently in the Royal Society of Chemistry's journal, Chemistry World, are given below.

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