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7 things candidates want to see on your job ad

Here are the top 7 things that candidates want to see. Put these in your job advert and watch the great applications roll in.


Research shows repeatedly that this is the number one thing candidates want to see. However, it’s also one of the last things most employers want to publish!

Most of the big job boards will make you enter a range into the back end for search, which is to help candidates filter by the price range they want. Some, like CareerOne, will publish their ‘estimate’ of what they think the salary should be. Given that this is done via an algorithm, it’s generally imperfect and when they get this wrong, it can have quite an impact on your response.   

When you have over-qualified candidates who want $90k applying for a $70k role, or less qualified candidates who want $25ph pitching for a role where you’re offering $40ph, it’s a waste of everyone’s time. Contrary to popular belief, publishing a salary range doesn’t reduce your negotiation ability. When you’re paying well, it’s a strong selling point.

Do yourself a favour and if at all possible, publish a range at least. Whether it’s ‘$30-35ph’ or ‘OTE $100k+’, candidates will appreciate you being on the front foot.



The old way of working is history and employees are no longer wanting to be in the office from 9 to 5 Monday to Friday. Employees want flexibility in where, when, and how they work.  And they’re more than willing to head out the door if their organization isn’t providing it. In fact in a recent LinkedIn global survey, 63% of professionals selected work/life balance as a top priority when picking a new job and when employees are satisfied with their companies’ time and location flexibility, they are 2.6x likely to report being happy.



Is the job work from home? Some work from home and some office time? Where is the workplace? Is it near transport? Cafes? Is parking easy? 

Location is a deal-breaker for most candidates, particularly in the big cities. No one wants to spend an hour a day in traffic and ‘closer to home’ is one of the top 3 reasons candidates cite as their reason for applying for a new job.

Aside from telling people where the workplace will be, tell them what’s great about where you are located. If work from home is an option, make sure you state that, as it’s also a key search phrase. In 2021, candidates are looking specifically for roles where this is an option.  


Company and values

Candidates hate anonymous adverts and dealing with third parties. In our experience, ‘blind’ adverts get fewer responses than those with company branding and 67% of candidates will research you before deciding whether to apply.

That’s why unless there is a really good reason not to tell people who you are, we recommend you should.   

Good candidates are looking for a company they can be excited about, a firm that shares their values and where their work will be meaningful. If that’s part of your criteria for hiring, then help candidates to prepare their ‘why you should hire me’ pitch by sharing this information. 



There are so many more rewards for work than just a paycheck. If you offer benefits like staff discounts, subsidised health insurance, even an office fruit box, then promote this. 

Candidates are also looking for a workplace culture that suits them, so find some words to explain your vibe. Regular staff BBQs? Laidback boss? Results focussed, energetic team? Adverts that help candidates to connect emotionally attract more enthusiastic candidates.  



You will have some essential skills and experience required and most job seekers will do a mental check off to ensure they aren’t wasting their time applying for a role they aren’t suitable for. We suggest including a link to the position description so the quality candidates can customise their resumes to suit the role.

However, don’t get carried away with a massive list of ‘must-haves.’  The narrower your criteria, the lower your application numbers (see our other blog on this topic).  We recommend no more than five bullet points in a list and make sure the ‘you must be’ section doesn’t swamp the ‘what we offer’ part of your advert. The two should be in equal proportion – remember a job advert just that: an ADVERT.

You are ‘selling’ the role, so write your advert as if you were pitching your best product or service to your ideal customer. You want to get the best candidates excited!



Finally, be realistic about what they will be doing day to day but try to make it a bit engaging. Bring it to life, explain a typical day and be specific. Candidates apply for roles they are confident about and enjoy doing.


As experts in crafting job adverts, the team here at Big Splash has a great track record in getting results. Want some help with copywriting? Need media advice? Drop us a line or check out our resource page.

7 things candidates want to see on your job ad