Growth Strategies

How to Write a Job Ad

Make the most of a classified ad with these tips.
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Before you write your job ad, complete a job analysis and description. This information will help you write an ad that will attract candidates to your company. The best way to avoid wasting time on interviews with people who do not meet your needs is to write an ad that will lure qualified candidates and discourages others. Consider this example:

Interior designer seeks inside/outside salesperson. Flooring, drapes (extensive measuring), furniture, etc. In-home consultations. Excellent salary and commission. PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE NECESSARY. San Francisco Bay Area. Send resume to G. Green at P.O. Box 5409, San Francisco, CA 90842.

This job description is designed to attract a flexible salesperson and eliminate those who lack the confidence to work on commission. The advertiser asks for expertise in "extensive measure," the skill she has had the most difficulty finding. The job location should be included to weed out applicants who don't live in the area or aren't willing to commute. Finally, the capitalized "PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE NECESSARY" underscores that she will hire only candidates with previous experience.

To write a similarly targeted ad for your business, look at your job specifications and pull out the top four or five skills that are most essential to the job. Don't, however, list requirements, other than educational and experience-related ones in the ad. Nor should you request specific personality traits (outgoing, detail-oriented) since people are likely to come in and imitate those characteristics when they don't really possess them. Instead, focus on telling the applicants about the excitement and challenge of the job, the salary, what they will get out of it and what it will be like working for you.

Finally, specify how employees should contact you. Depending on the type of job (professional or nonskilled), you may want to have the person mail, fax or e-mail a cover letter and resume, or simply call to set up an appointment to come in and fill out an application.

Excerpted from Start Your Own Business.

More from Entrepreneur

Elizabeth's expertise can help you scale your business, build a personal brand and focus on being a value-driven CEO.
Book Your Session

In as little as seven months, the Entrepreneur Authors program will turn your ideas and expertise into a professionally presented book.
Apply Now

Are paying too much for business insurance? Do you have critical gaps in your coverage? Trust Entrepreneur to help you find out.
Get Your Quote Now

Latest on Entrepreneur

My Queue

There are no Videos in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any video to save to your queue.

There are no Articles in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any article to save to your queue.

There are no Podcasts in your queue.

Click on the Add to next to any podcast episode to save to your queue.

You're not following any authors.

Click the Follow button on any author page to keep up with the latest content from your favorite authors.