Grab their attention! How to write an attractive job ad for graduates

Posted by Gradconnection

Job ads can start sounding all too similar for graduates during peak application season. In this blog we break down our top 5 areas to ensure your job ad is as appealing as possible to the talent you're looking to nab.    



1. Cut to the Chase  

If students have gotten good at one thing during their study, it’s skim reading. That’s why it’s important to be as informative and concise as possible. Make a good first impression - your Job Title needs to be clear, attention grabbing and SEO friendly. From there, bullet points and subheadings are your friend. If you’re offering different streams for your graduate program, put them in separate job ads to be super targeted. A candidate should be able to picture themselves in your company, performing the required daily tasks and expectations. And don’t forget to cover off key questions candidates are most likely to want to know, including Salary, Location, Duties and Benefits.  

2. Be Engaging and Personal 

For the best chance at catching the eye of a student candidate, personalise your copy. This means being aware of what benefits are going to be most relevant and of interest to your target demographic. As a general rule of thumb, cover the three key drivers graduates are seeking: Training and Development, Career Progression and Meaningful Work. What learning and development programs do you offer? One-on-one mentoring opportunities? Remember, the hiring process is a two-way street - as much as candidates are trying to impress recruiters, you are, likewise, trying to win over the best of the crop.  

3. Be Realistic in your Expectations 

When advertising for internships and graduate roles, you shouldn’t be asking for specific skills and experience at this entry-level position. If you would like to include desirable candidate attributes, be aware that students are easily put off if they are uncertain and feel as though they don’t match particular listed traits. It may be helpful to draw on your current graduates and think about their qualities you would like to see translated. But also remember that every candidate is unique in what they have to offer and graduates have a huge capacity to not only bring existing skills from university but also learn on the job. Regardless, you should be upfront in any eligibility criteria required to avoid disappointment and time wastage on both ends of the application process.   

4. Avoid Gimmicks 

While it may be tempting to be overly descriptive in your specifications for an ideal candidate, steer away from using gimmicky language. Words like ‘superstar’ or gender-stereotypical language such as ‘competitive’ and ‘dominant’ could deter applicants from your role if they do not characterise themselves in this way. Instead, a word like ‘driven’ could be replaced with more gender-neutral options such as ‘motivated’ or ‘energised’.   

5. Optimizing GradConnection 

Is your ad not performing as well as you would like? GradConnection allows you to change your campaigns as many times as you like while they are up and running, so feel free to reach out and re-work it!  

Bonus tip: although students may be less likely to be reading job ads on their mobile, it’s still important to ensure your copy is optimised for as many different platforms as possible!     


Enter an employer or university you want to find in our search bar.