Leadership transitions are key moments. The handoff from one leader to another can propel a church forward or handicap the ministry for years.
The search process can be daunting. No one wants to deal with the fallout of a bad hire. Placing a classified ad with a trusted news source is a reliable way of generating resumes. But many search teams make avoidable errors that push good candidates away.
The Biblical Recorder staff has worked with thousands of classified advertisers over the years. We’ve seen it all, and we can help you avoid the most common mistakes.
Here are seven tips that will help your church or organization develop an effective ad that reels in the perfect hire.
1) Include contact information and respond to inquiries
You might be surprised how many classified advertisers fail to include basic contact information. Candidates may pass up your position if it’s hard to reach you.
Be sure to list a phone number and email address. Designate a search team member who can monitor inquiries and respond quickly.
Helpful tip: Respond to calls within 12 hours and emails in 24 hours.
2) Be clear about the job requirements
Candidates pay close attention to the required duties in a job listing.
We’re all a little self-conscious. Your potential hire wants to know if they are up to the task.
List the job requirements as clearly as possible. Don’t go overboard, but make certain the important duties are covered.
Helpful tip: Specify any staff or volunteer management duties.
3) Tell them about your church or organization
The culture or “personality” of your workplace is important. Every team is different. Candidates want to know if they will fit in and enjoy being around other staff, volunteers or church members.
Consider including information about the mission, vision, values or theological distinctives of your church or organization.
Helpful tip: Use at least three words that describe your team’s DNA.
4) Use photos and videos whenever possible
Take advantage of the ability to include photos or videos with digital classifieds. Visual resources help candidates envision what life will be like in the position.
Many churches want to show off their facilities, but don’t forget to include images of the people they will be serving.
Helpful tip: Use video clips from worship services or record a short greeting.
5) Describe the ideal candidate
What does your perfect hire look like? Include a brief description in your listing.
Describing the perfect candidate goes one step further in helping potential applicants decide if they are a good fit for the position.
Highlight any preferred “soft skills” that best suit the position.
Helpful tip: This step will benefit the search team and applicants.
6) Make deadlines generous or avoid them altogether
Deadlines are tricky when searching for new personnel.
The search process often takes longer than expected. An expired deadline in a listing can push away good applicants who don’t know the timeline has been extended. If you must include a deadline, be sure to leave plenty of time.
Helpful tip: Some experts say it takes 12-18 months to find a new pastor that’s a good fit.
7) Help them find you online!
Your organization’s website and social media accounts are the first thing people visit. Point them toward your website, Facebook, Youtube or Twitter accounts.
Any church or organization with an online presence that’s informative and appealing will greatly increase their chances of attracting the right candidates.
Helpful tip: Make sure your online info is up-to-date before the search process begins.
Find your next hire today! Visit BRnow.org/classified to place an ad.