Writing Effective Role Adverts

Creating well written and interesting role adverts will add value to your recruitment process and deliver better results. The best advice we can give: Keep your ideal volunteer in your mind as you write the advert, and you will attract more interest (and applications) from your target audience.

Role Title

This is a chance to grab the attention of a potential volunteer as they are scanning a list of available opportunities. Put some thought into it and avoid single generic terms like ‘Volunteer’ or ‘Fundraiser’.  There are two ways you can go:

A. Be Descriptive – tell us what’s involved in the role, here are some examples:

  1. Office Receptionist & Administration Support Volunteer
  2. Graphic Designer for Information Leaflet
  3. Charity Shop Sales Assistant (Phibsboro)
  4. Plate Pal Mealtime Companion – St James’s Hospital
  5. Children’s Bereavement Service Helpline Volunteer
  6. Help us keep our garden blooming!

B. Be Creative – incorporate a catchy campaign name, link with an event or the time of year. Use humour or language that would appeal to your target audience. Here are some examples to get you thinking:

  1. Engineers Week Coordinator – Inspire future engineers!
  2. ‘Buckets for Barnardos’ Fundraising Team Leader
  3. French Speaking Befriender – Parlez vous Francais?
  4. Social Media Genius and Live Tweeter
  5. “Give If You Dare” Halloween Bag Packer
  6. Tiger Dublin Fringe Volunteer Cubs
  7. Chatterbox @ The Volunteer Fair on 6th Oct

Elevator Pitch

The first few lines of your role advert will be visible on I-VOL’s search results and when shared on social media.

           

Think of it as your ‘Elevator Pitch’, the chance to turn interest into a desire to learn more about you by clicking through to your advert. A short and engaging few lines covering why you are looking for a volunteer and how they will be helping to make a difference in your organisation. At this stage your potential volunteer should be starting to imagine themselves already in the role!

Language

A potential volunteer will judge your organisation by your advert. Give a brief overview of what’s involved, as well as the skills and experience required, using language that will appeal to your target volunteer. A Website Designer will expect technical information about your website software, while a potential Board member is more likely to apply for an organisation that comes across as credible and dynamic.

Speak directly to the volunteer: Use ‘You’ and ‘We’ to appear more personal and friendly, rather than “The volunteer will …”. To attract more applications from young active people, your advert should be energetic and fun.

Include relevant links to your website and social media for further information, and an online application form if you have one.

Why volunteer with you?

We know how passionate you are about your cause, make sure this comes across in your role advert. People want to be part of positive change and feel they are making a difference in their community.

Volunteers will be very interested in the supports you can offer, particularly if training is available. Highlight the many potential benefits of volunteering with you and don’t leave any fields blank. Remember that some potentially great volunteers may not have a fluent level of English: They may be looking to volunteer to improve their language skills.

Feedback

Reading back over your role advert, ask yourself: Would I apply for this opportunity? Involve your existing volunteers in the process and the Volunteer Centre is always available to give feedback and advice.

Which of these WALK adverts do you think would be more effective in recruiting a befriending volunteer to accompany someone to watch his favourite team play football?

  

Further Information?

To discuss your needs and see how we can support you best, please contact your Organisation Support Officer Frances Hayden

frances@volunteerdublincity.ie or (01) 473 7482