You want to hire the best people, naturally. And you do that by having a good place to work, by offering a good salary and benefits, by developing a good reputation. But all of this may not matter much if your job advertisements are not as compelling as they could be.

The best people can afford to be selective when they peruse job posts. They will look at the post for information about what the job is like, whether it is a position that they will find challenging, interesting and fulfilling. And they will compare your job post to those of your competition.

So you need to be aware of how your job posts compare to those of your competitors. If their posts are written in a more interesting and persuasive way, the best candidates will be responding to their ad rather than yours.

How do you know if yours is the best or whether they need improvement? You do a comparison test. You have job candidates look at yours and those of your competitors and rate them. If they like your competitors’ ads better than yours, you need to rewrite the ads.

Here, step by step, is the process you need to use to help compare your postings to the competition:

Identify who exactly your competition is.

Which companies are competing with you for the best people? Find their job postings on job boards.

Block out identifying features in the ads.

In other words, delete anything that may give away the identity of the companies involved. You may even have to delete the actual job titles if they are a giveaway.

Find people to critique the ads.

The best people to use would naturally be job applicants. But you can use employees as well, or some combination of the two. You need about five to ten people to read the ads.

Have the people rate the ads.

You need to put the job posts next to each other for comparison purposes. Most job candidates take only 50 to 80 seconds to look through an ad, so give your people only about a minute with each ad. Then, tell your critics to rank the job ads from best to worst.


Meet with each evaluator to find out why they made their particular ranking. Ask them what attracted them to a particular ad and what turned them off.


After you have determined what makes ads the most attractive, take another look at your own to make sure they have that information in them. Then ask people to critique them again.

Looking for an expert recruiting partner?

At Winston Resources, we have a team of experienced recruiters in New York City and beyond. We will help you identify talent gaps, write compelling job descriptions, attract top tier talent, and make great hires. Give Winston a call today.

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