Things to consider when writing inclusive job adverts

Recruitment is a key challenge for many companies when it comes to diversity. Here’s a few pointers of things you might want to consider when trying to attract a wider candidate pool…

  1. Job Titles
    While it may be tempting to entice jobseekers with catchy and memorable job titles such as ‘ninja’, ‘superstar’ and ‘guru’ they may have the opposite effect and deter individuals who believe they don’t fit with these images. Be conscious of the language you’re using particularly gender-coded words which could hinder your ability to inclusively hire.
  2. Salaries
    According to Glassdoor, 67% of job seekers try to find information about salaries when researching a company or looking at job ads.
    You have a budget, candidates have a threshold. Research shows that job adverts that don’t list a salary receive fewer applicants than those that do. Don’t let ambiguity bias get in the way by diminishing your talent pool! Transparency speaks volumes and providing a salary, or even a salary bracket will save everyone time and remove uncomfortable negotiations later down the line.
  3. Full time / Flexible Roles
    Recent events have turned our work/life balance a bit topsy turvy! We’re moving towards a new digital way of working. If the perfect candidate applied for your role, but they wanted to work 4 days a week rather than 5, would you reject them? If not, then have a serious think over whether or not you can be flexible. Advertising flexibility will appeal to a wider audience of candidates.
  4. Essential / Desirable Skills
    Keep your essential criteria as short as possible and label everything else as a ‘nice to have’ or ‘desirable’. Research tells us that women are less likely to apply for a role when they fail to meet all the essential and desirable criteria. A few things to consider:

    1. Is that degree essential – if so why – is it necessary to do the job?
    2. What is your justification for X years experience? Would you consider a candidate with less experience?
    3. By stating you need recent experience, you are potentially excluding parents who have recently taken a career break to raise children, or a woman who has been on maternity leave.
    4. If you’d consider applicants with transferable skills from a different industry, put that on there! It’s a great way to open up your opportunity to more people.
  5. Benefits
    What inclusive benefits do you have as an employer that would be attractive to applicants? Share things like your parental leave, remote and smart working policies. If you have a learning mentality internally and encourage training, let people know about your commitment to professional development.
  6. Diversity Statements
    ‘We are an equal opportunities employer…’ blah blah!  Great in terms of intention, but it screams lip service to me. This is a great opportunity to shout from the rooftops about your commitment to diversity and inclusion and your inclusive working culture. Make it you. Make it authentic. Don’t just tick a box.


Making your job adverts more inclusive is just one step, at 50:50 we believe in having a holistic diversity and inclusion strategy to support every aspect of your business. We have a monthly virtual workshop that covers Inclusive Recruitment in much more details. Click here to find out more. 


If you’d like to get in touch with me to find out more, drop me an email: [email protected]