Attracting Ideal Candidates

Employing the right people is critical to the success of the organisation for the future. Time and energy invested in getting this right will pay dividends, however if we get it wrong it could be very costly in more ways than one. Please take the time to ensure you make the right decisions on when to employ (timing is important), how to employ (what process will you use to attract, select appoint), and who to employ (ensure you select the right person for the role) and that you spend the time necessary to ensure we get it right.

Understand the role

Before you start the recruitment and selection process it is important that you fully understand the role, and ensure that the Job Description is accurate and up-to-date.

Identify the target audience

To identify the type of candidates you want to attract, consider the following:

  • What will the profile of your ideal candidate look like?
  • How many people will fit this profile?
  • Where are these people likely to be located? (locally, nationally, internationally)
  • What publications and/or websites do they read/visit?
  • What specialist or professional associations do they belong to?

Active and passive candidates

While some of the potential candidates may be actively looking for new opportunities, a significant proportion may not be actively seeking a career move. These are called passive candidates. Active candidates will be looking online, signing up for job alerts, reviewing vacancies in newspapers and journals etc. To target the passive candidates, consider which publications or newsletters they read and subscribe to; websites they visit; and their specialist or professional associations. This can be determined by liaising with the current staff or other people in similar roles.

Sourcing strategy and communication style

Understanding the mind set and motivations of your ideal candidates will help define your sourcing strategy and communication style. The style of communication that will be attractive to your ideal candidates will depend on their values, career motivations, personality type, generation and cultural background.

Sourcing strategy should be consistent with your target audience and whether you want to target active or passive candidates.

What about the job can attract candidates to Massey?  

Think about what people may be looking for in the job.

They may be in search for opportunities:

  • For career development
  • To develop specific skills
  • For research
  • To work within a respected organisation or department
  • Flexibility or variety in work.

Review advertisements for similar roles in the media to consider how the opportunity you are offering compares to openings offered by other organisations.

What outside of the job can attract candidates to Massey?

People might want to move to a certain area because of:

  • Opportunities of education and work for their partner and children
  • For international candidates, safe and clean Kiwi environment and lifestyle could be a huge pulling point
  • People may also be looking for professional, social and cultural networks; accessibility of recreation and cultural activities.

Key success factors

Identify and write 5-7 Key Success Factors. These are factors which will be essential for the ideal candidate to possess to be successful in the role. The time spent on getting this part right will assist greatly with the rest of this process.

How to write a good job advertisement

The aim of the job advertisement is to create interest, hence the first few lines should be interesting and engaging. The ad should include what the job involves on a day to day basis; detailed information is included in the job description.

  • The job title should clearly identify the job
  • The ad should reflect the positive aspects of the job and employer
  • The ad should describe the necessary experiences, skills, knowledge, and abilities
  • Prioritise the information included in your ad based on the Key Success Factors
  • Sentences should be short and to the point
  • Salary and benefits should be stated clearly
  • The ad should have clear instructions on how to apply.

AIDA format:

Following is the AIDA format (Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action) for effective job adverts:

Attention 

This is the lead into the advertisement and is used to attract the attention of relevant job seekers. To do this use a descriptive job title – e.g. Lecturer in Psychology rather than simply Lecturer.

Use a catchy headline, for example:

  • ‘This is a leading role...’
  • ‘Do you have an interest in...?’
  • ‘As a ...within the ... department, you will...’
  • Join an institute that has been ranked number five of New Zealand's most attractive employer brands in the annual Randstad Awards
  • Do you want to be part of a team of  brilliant minds discovering breakthrough solutions
  • Come join the world of top-class academics and the team who supports them.

For example, there could be ten jobs with the title “Web Designer” on a job board, making your title a little bit more descriptive than "Web Designer" will help to get your advert noticed e.g. Web Designer – Creative Genius!

The lead paragraph should back up the job title. E.g. We have a challenging and exciting role in the heart of Manawatu for a creative Web Designer. You will be responsible for creative execution of desktop, tablet……... You'll have the opportunity to work with some of the biggest brains in the country all in the fun and relaxed environment of our beautiful Manawatu campus.”

Interest 

Generating interest is done by thoughtful and informative copy.

  • Get a good balance between being informative about the job and making it inviting
  • Put in the experience and skills that are an absolute must have. Don't scare away talented candidates by creating a "wish list" of job requirements
  • Create interest in the job opportunity by describing attractive features about the work itself, the work place and life outside work
  • Use bullets and subheadings to highlight the benefits even if it’s as simple as a friendly working environment.

For example:

  • A competitive salary
  • Superannuation employer contributions or KiwiSaver employer contributions
  • University holidays
  • On the job training
  • Staff study options
  • University gym and daycare
  • A planned pay rise evaluation schedule
  • Other company type benefits
  • Flexible work arrangements
  • Performance bonuses
  • Opportunities for promotion and career development
  • A great working environment
  • Development programs
  • Management appreciates and recognizes  team members’ accomplishments

Continuing the above example for the Web Designer

Web Designer- Creative Genius We have a challenging and exciting role in the heart of Manawatu for a creative Web Designer.

  • You will be responsible for the creative execution of desktop, tablet and mobile sites for our various internal clients.
  • From prototyping to launch, you'll have ownership over each step in the creative process. You'll create the experience and then work with our development team for the implementation.
  • The ideal candidate for this role must have an excellent online portfolio (with URLs of course) and good experience with HTML, CSS, Javascript, and Photoshop. Experience with WordPress is also a plus.
  • You'll have the opportunity to work with some of the biggest brains in the country while enjoying the fun and relaxed environment of our beautiful Manawatu campus.

Desire 

Create desire by explaining how the job will benefit the job seeker and describing the ideal candidate. Talk directly to the person. Use as much "you, your" as you can. This helps people visualise themselves in the role.

For example: In addition to your technical expertise with multimedia, you will require good communication and project management skills…

Instead of “We are seeking a highly motivated, suitably qualified professional” Try: Are you are a highly motivated, suitably qualified professional

Action 

Encourage the reader to take action and apply.

Entering the advert in ImpelHR

In ImpelHR, there are two sections for the advertisement, the summarised media advertisement and the full web advert.

Summarised Media Advertisement

This is a short statement highlighting the key features of the position and what your ideal candidate might look like which usually goes in the print media and is used as a lead in our advertisements. For newspaper adverts, you pay by the line or the column centimetre, so keep this advertisement specific and to the point. You can expand on what’s included in your Newspaper advertisement online in your Internet advertisement. It is best not to repeat the school/institute name or the job title here.

Full Web Advertisement

This is the full advert placed on the careers and all other sites, in line with Massey advertising guidelines:

Examples of good copy writing and their placement in ImpelHR.

Financial Services Manager

Summarised media advertisement

You will take responsibility for the first-rate management of the University’s financial and accounting services. You will play a lead role in providing robust and insightful analysis and advice on financial performance.

Full web advertisement

Discover the ideal financial balance

Massey University is an innovative leader in the academic realm - an institution that has played a defining role in New Zealand’s development as a nation. We aspire to be the engine of the new New Zealand, and to achieve this vision, we are embarking on a drive to build and strengthen our internal capacity. The Finance, Strategy and IT team, which you will be part of, is critical to the future direction of Massey. This role is your opportunity to play a part in the team shaping this direction, while enjoying a new level of success in your career.

  • Working closely with the CFO, Assistant Vice Chancellors and Colleges, you will take responsibility for the first-rate management of the University’s financial and accounting services.
  • It’s a multi-faceted challenge that will see you play a lead role in providing robust and insightful analysis and advice on financial performance.
  • From imparting specialist expertise in key areas such as business case analysis to management reporting and budgetary management, you can look forward to a diverse and interesting brief.
  • Expect to also be heavily involved in business process re-engineering, the identification of cost and revenue drivers, and expenditure monitoring. An experienced and engaging people manager, you’ll be a tertiary qualified finance professional – aligned to a recognised accounting body and, ideally, experience from a commercial environment. This will ensure you’re equipped with the change and transformational management expertise necessary for this role.
  • Your attention to detail will be second to none, as will your financial advisory skills and ability to lead and inspire a team.
  • It goes without saying that you’ll also be a highly competent communicator, comfortable interacting at all levels of an organisation.
  • While the career opportunity on offer here is impressive, we think you will be just as enticed by the life you could have in Palmerston North. Affordable living, friendly communities, and a beautiful environment – our vibrant city has so much to offer.

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Business

Summarised media advertisement

An exciting opportunity exists to establish and build your research career. You will be a keen researcher with a PhD in a Business subject. You must also possess demonstrated research and analytical skills supplemented by excellent communication and planning capabilities.

Full web advertisement

Come and join the world of top-class academics and the team who supports them at Massey University.

An exciting opportunity exists to establish and build your scientific research.

  • You will be a keen researcher with a PhD in in a business subject.
  • You will also have experience in areas such as A,B, C
  • You must possess demonstrated research and analytical skills supplemented by excellent communication and planning capabilities.

At Massey, you will find a great working environment, opportunities for development and the flexibility to work at any one of our three campuses. In 2013, Massey University was ranked New Zealand's fifth most attractive employer in the annual Randstad Awards, an international survey conducted across 14 countries. It was also the education sector winner. The College of Business has a proud history, with New Zealand's longest running MBA, journalism, and entrepreneurship/small business programmes. We are accredited by AACSB and AMBA, alongside several discipline-specific endorsements.

The Palmerston North campus is located in the Manawatu region, set between the Tararua and Ruahine ranges in the east and the vast Tasman Sea in the west. Manawatu combines the charm of rural New Zealand with the sophisticated city appeal of Palmerston North. It has a thriving arts and sport scene and is reputed to have the highest number of restaurants, eateries and cafe bars per capita in New Zealand.

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