Selling PointsHave you included the selling points of your job opportunity in your job advert?

What are selling points?

This is the information candidates want to know about. It’s the “WIIFM” (what’s in it for me).

Why?

By not including selling points in your job advert, you won’t address what’s important to your target audience and you’re less likely to convert them into an applicant.

How?

Note: I’ve written the following from the perspective of assisting a Manager to recruit. But the same applies if you’re recruiting yourself.

To start with, consider what’s important to job seekers (active and passive).  Think about what you want to know when looking at job opportunities. Aside from job, salary and location – we want to know what we’ll learn (job training, up-skilling, career development); do (day-to-day activities); and become (career opportunities).  Other important factors include:  team, manager, morale, recognition, lifestyle balance, flexibility, social responsibility, benefits and rewards, reputable company and market position.

Now, it can be a challenge to list the job’s selling points, especially if you simply ask ‘What are the selling points of your role?”  Sometimes the Manager is too close to the role to see the selling points, or has not thought about this before.  Follow the 10 steps below to discover the selling points for any job!

10 steps to identify the job’s selling points

1. Culture

What’s the work culture like in your business area? How would you describe the work environment?
Is it fun? creative? formal? busy? quiet? loud?  social?

 2. Team

How would you describe your team?  What’s the dynamics like? How successfully do they work together? Why do you think that is? Is your team social? Does your team get together for Friday 5s? Play a sport together? Play video games together? What do they like doing together?

3. Manager

How would you describe your management style?
For example: Do you micro manage? Or do you set tasks and expect employees to keep you informed? Do you have an ‘open door’ policy? 

Why do you like being a Manager? Where do you get your job satisfaction from? What motivates you to manage a team?

What feedback do you get on your management style from the team? Have you asked for their feedback? Do you know what they respond best to? Not so well too?

How do you mentor employees? How do you set your team up for success?

4. Career Opportunities

What career opportunities exist for someone in this role? What’s the next step from here?  Historically, what jobs have others in this role moved on to?

5. Career Development

How have you helped your team achieve any of their goals? What support have you provided to enable career development? Do you have any examples of an employee who’s gone on to do very well through time with you? How has their career progressed?

6. Recognition

How do you recognise an employee’s success? Your team’s success? How does the company recognise employee and team successes?

7. Flexibility

Do you offer flexibility to work from home when required? Allow employees to finish earlier or start later to attend school sports events? Offer study leave for exams? etc.  Can your team get remote access to your company server/systems if required?

8. Lifestyle Balance

Does the team enjoy a balanced lifestyle? Do they have interests outside of work? What are some of their interests e.g. Sports/Hobbies/Travel?  How do you help your team embrace a balanced lifestyle?

9. Products & Services

Does your business provide a product or service? – how is it rated by a) internal customers;  b) external customers;  c) industry.  What feedback have you received? Do you know how the product or service compares to your competitors?  Is your product or service considered as market leading? How is this qualified?  What are you most proud of about your product or service?

10. Awards

Has your team or business won any industry awards? What are some recent wins?

11. Community

Does your team / company volunteer time and resources to the local community? List community activities and achievements.

The trick to gleaning good answers… is to ask good questions

  1. Don’t take the first answer. Dig deeper.  Ask: Why? How? What? When? Who?
  2. Use open questions to encourage Hiring Managers to provide comprehensive answers. Open questions begin with – What? How? Describe? “Tell me about a time…” “Help me to understand….”
  3. Use closed questions to confirm facts. Closed questions are also a good way to clarify a Hiring Manager’s answer. Closed questions begin with a “Did? Do? Is? Have? Will? Would?” and are usually answered with a “Yes” or “No”.
  4. Don’t use closed questions when you are looking for detailed information. If you get a short answer, rephrase with an open question.
  5. If the hiring Manager doesn’t know the answer – then ask to speak to their team and find out what’s important to them!

Note: In the meantime, ask the Manager to reflect back to when they joined the organisation – what was it that attracted them to apply and accept employment. Why do they stay with the organisation? If they still can’t answer – then there is another conversation to be had. Seriously if it becomes this hard – there is an underlying issue here and the company is not matching the Hiring Manager’s employee value expectations.

Sell Your Job Opportunity

At the end of this questionnaire you’ll have gained valuable information. Not all the information has to be communicated straight away in the job advert. You can use it to sell the opportunity at different parts of the process such as shoulder tapping talent, engaging applicants to participate in your recruitment process, at the interview and when negotiating the offer.

Add 5 selling points to your job advertisement:
  1. Identify top 5 selling points to feature in your advert
  2. Repeat the words and phrases the Manager and team used in their answers, to connect with your target audience. (Use language that will resonate with them – move away from formal language used in position descriptions).
  3. List your top 5 selling points at the top of your job advert.  Tell the job seeker what they want to know first!