If you’re struggling to attract professional caregivers to your jobs – or struggling to attract the right candidates, one solution is simply to write better job posts. Go back to the good old days and agonize over the copy. Write engaging headlines (job titles) to capture attention. Craft body copy that really sells – and appeals to your target candidate. And conclude by telling people exactly what you want them to do to apply.
A good job post alone can’t make up for your shortage in caregivers, but it can get more of those active job seekers (and even some passive ones) to find your agency and apply to the opportunities you offer.
1. Write engaging job titles.
The job title IS your attention grabber. Yes, you should include the functional title (because people search for functional titles), but embellish it with something that will make your job stand out. You might include a location, starting pay, bonus opportunities, flexible scheduling, or opportunity to grow. For example “CareGiver ($12 / hr)” or “Resident Caregiver +Hiring Bonus”
2. Test the same job with different titles.
Just like the example above, the same job may attract very different candidates with a different title. Changing the job title from “CNAs/HHAs wanted” to “Looking for caring and compassionate caregivers” may make all the difference in both quality and quantity of candidates.
3. Sell first.
Why is this such a great job? Why would your ideal candidate be interested? Start your job posts by selling the “WIIFM” (we can hear Zig Zigler now!) to the people you want to attract. Save the list of duties and requirements until after you’ve made the sale.
4. Know each job and why it’s exceptional.
Create a “performance profile” for each job, describing the major challenges which must be met to succeed. Presenting an opportunity this way helps you create “opportunity gaps” (significant differences between a prospect’s current job and the new job) that will get a passive candidate thinking. If you can convince a candidate that he would be passing on a major opportunity, you have a much better chance of winning him over.
5. Paint a picture of your ideal candidate.
Hire a writer to help you develop your posts. Or train your people to be better writers. A job post is an advertisement, and your ads need great writing. Your copy must attract and engage your ideal candidates. You want to capture their imagination, get them to picture themselves in the role, and help them envision a better future by landing this job.
6. Include pay information.
Job posts with pay information get 40% more response! Even if your pay rates stink, it’s better to include pay and have people disqualify themselves than to waste your time with people who will never accept the offer. That stated, if you have multiple jobs for the same role, advertise the highest possible pay. And if your pay is below market, be sure to sell other positive aspects of the job opportunity.
7. Know what matters to candidates.
Offering a competitive salary is important, but it’s not the only thing that matters to job seekers. Identify candidates’ “hot buttons” and intangibles which are just as important as money, such as: challenging work; opportunity for advancement; location; flexible hours; a performance / salary review after six months; continuing education; occasional flex days; professional development perks; and mentoring opportunities. Leverage these intangibles to strengthen your post.
8. Provide a clear call to action.
Do people have to apply online? Can they call or email you? Do you want a cover letter? Every job post should clearly tell people how to apply. Ideally, you’ll repeat your call to action throughout the post-and if people do not apply for the specific job they are viewing, consider creating a pop up to get them to submit their resume in consideration for all the other jobs you have available.
9. Use bullets.
Forget long paragraphs of text. Use lists to make your posts easier to read and maintain candidates’ interest.
10. Use headlines and subheadlines.
Make the key points about the job easy to skim.
We’d love to hear your thoughts on what makes a great job advertisement. What has worked for your home care agency?