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Downing Street Recruitment

How Not To Write An Accountancy Job Advert

In case you are unaware of the recent news story, Boris Johnson’s most trusted aide, Dominic Cummings, published a blog last week inviting “super-talented weirdos” and “true wild cards” to apply for jobs at Number 10.

The clumsy and rambling 3,000-word job advert posted on Cummings’ personal blog has certainly got our attention, but for none of the right reasons.

No doubt it’s a job ad that cannot be described as dull. In his mind, it is honest, blunt and unequivocal. But experts warn that aside from his outrageous and offensive language, he has clearly broken employment law by targeting graduates, implying he will hire and fire at will, warning there will be no “weekday date nights” or weekends, and adding,

 “People in Westminster talk a lot about ‘diversity’ but they rarely mean ‘true cognitive diversity. They are usually babbling about ‘gender identity diversity blah blah.”

Needless to say, At Public Practice Recruitment Ltd, we would never recommend replicating this style of job advertisement for your own firm! However, a standout job advertisement – which promotes diversity and is no way discriminatory, can be a powerful way to recruit talented employees.

Here are a few simple guidelines to follow which will grab a reader’s attention without landing you in an employment tribunal!

Job title – It can be tempting to get creative, but job seekers will be searching for recognisable keywords and phrases. If it’s a Senior Accountant you need then make sure that’s what you ask for. You can make use of the introduction to add more interest and appeal.

Introduction – Here is where you can really sell the company and the position. No 3,000-word ramble required! A punchy paragraph which tells the candidate right away if this is the job for them – and if they are the person for you. Remember this is a job ‘ad’ – you’re ‘selling’ the job, not doing anybody any favours here.

The role – Next you can go into objectives, responsibilities and requirements. Short sentences and bullet points work well as they are clear and easy for the candidates to speed read. Don’t forget, you are one of many firms they will be considering. Try to avoid generic language where possible and please don’t be tempted to copy and paste content from your website.

The company – This is your sales pitch. Why should talented candidates apply to work for you? If you’re not a well-known brand name, try to focus on what makes your company so great and different from everyone else. A recent survey by Monster showed that 46% of people would actually prefer to work at a business with between 6 and 100 employees.

Salary and benefits – What are the perks? They don’t need to be financial – onsite parking, stunning views, team lunch on Fridays. How will they feel valued? Offer challenges which will attract candidates with drive and ambition. And don’t feel you need to be specific about salary.

How to apply – Be clear and specific where potential candidates should send their applications and what should be included. Also include a closing date and a point of contact for any questions. Using a specialist recruiter will save time, money and hassle …as well as securing the top talent in the industry.

“Successful recruitment is a skill, and as we’ve been doing this for 10 years we really know our stuff. At Public Practice Recruitment Ltd, we’re dynamic, creative and forward thinking. But we know how to be professional, lawful and decent. If only Mr Cummings had come to us for advice!”

Garry Howling, Public Practice Recruitment Ltd


If you want to partner with a professional recruitment company to help with your recruitment strategy in 2020, please get in touch today.

We know how candidates think – how their minds work. When it comes to all aspects of the accountant recruitment process, we’re the experts – always here to help.

Call 0333 577 7787.

Email –

Or complete our submission form.


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