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The impact of opportunity cost on personal and professional life
Evaluating the benefits and drawbacks of different choices
Understanding the concept of opportunity cost
The first turnoff is the sheer amount of information stuffed into a typical job description. Paragraph after paragraph give the history of the company, the markets it serves, the job profile, the competencies and experience required, and an endless stream of responsibilities that the winning candidate will have to fulfill.
Scale back the prose. Think of how much better you’ll look if you communicate clearly and concisely. Include information about the company and the job, but don’t include anything superfluous.
It seems like it should go without saying, but job descriptions should make companies sound likeable. Too often ads have no “sell” in them. They read like a shareholder’s report. Rewrite your job description to make your company appeal to the hearts and minds of candidates.
Companies can also up their game in describing their culture.
A typical line from a job description: “We have a culture in which each employee is respected and valued. Every employee brings unique skills, background, and experiences.”
What companies need to do is talk about culture in terms that elicit enthusiasm.
Poorly written job ads often read like wish lists, rather than actual requirements. One might say you need five years’ experience, but actually, you don’t. You probably only need 6-8 months. By putting a laundry list of skills that a candidate supposedly needs, companies end up missing out on amazing candidates. Instead, companies should list only the requirements of that role, and add “nice to have” qualifications to that list.
Ever seen a job ad like this? “We need a seasoned, strategic storyteller who can help effectively message, plan and execute media strategies that capitalize on our industry-leading momentum.”
Instead, why doesn’t the writer just say, “we need a candidate who can deliver effective stories about our company to the media.” The more words that are used, the less clear a passage is. Is this company looking for a candidate who comes into the interview and says, “Hello, I am a seasoned, strategic storyteller.” Not likely.
A related problem in job ads is their failure to use real language. This can be a huge turnoff to job seekers.
Expressions like “strong, deliverable focus” and “execute projects” in job ads read as overly formal and lack clarity. For example, what does it mean to have a “strong, deliverable focus?”
Or what does the following passage mean? “You will define key multi-channel communications strategies to support our company’s priorities.” It’s nonsense!
A good exercise for the folks writing these ads is to read the lines out loud. If they don’t sound real, get rid of them.
Hiring companies should include a salary or salary range in their descriptions.
Holding back this information puts the prospective employee at a huge disadvantage, as it means that they have no idea whether the job is a good fit. This also wastes a company’s time and resources, as you may have candidates who go through the application process, only to drop out near the end.
By posting a salary range, you can set yourself apart from competitors, and qualified candidates will likely appreciate your commitment to transparency and to correcting pay inequity.
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