Don’t waste your words…

Written by: Jane Davidson
Published on: 16 Oct 2018

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Image © Scott Liddell / Adobe Stock

So many job adverts for vets and nurses waste words on meaningless phrases. Roles are often advertised using some of the most unhelpful phrases:

  • Salary commensurate with experience
  • Free lunch on Fridays
  • Must love chocolate
  • Free tea and coffee
  • No OOH
  • Competitive salary
  • “All the toys”

These tell me nothing about your practice or the role, of the pay and conditions.

Pointless information

Your view of a competitive salary or what you decide is “relevant experience” to be financially rewarded for may not be the same as mine. 

OOH is a term that is usually applied to the time when another provider covers the 24/7 needs of a practice. You may still be open 12 hours a day 7 days week which might rule out some people from the shift pattern, so “OOH” doesn’t really convey any helpful information.

As for free food or tea and coffee… I cannot express how much these adverts depress me. You may have 200 characters to share what’s great about your practice – if this is the best you’ve got then most people will pass by your advert.

In fact a number of vet nurses have said these phrases will make them note the advertiser and NOT consider working there.

Paid in pastries?

Yes, vet nurses don’t earn the same as vets, but we still live in the same areas, have to buy the same gas, water and electricity, probably run a car, eat food. We can’t take a slice of cake, however lovely, to British Gas and say: “My employer won’t tell me how much I’ll be paid but there is free cake – can I pay you with this?”

Toys – really? This phrase appears in many vet adverts but it’s a subjective phrase that tells me little about your practice.

If I’m used to digital x-ray, blood pressure machines in consults, wards and theatres, drip pumps for every patients and multi-parameter anaesthesia monitoring, a fully-functioning lab and a team trained to use it all, will I be impressed with your pulse-ox and oesophageal stethoscope?

Yes, they are useful in trained RVN hands but are they really “all the toys”?

I personally feel this statement skates over the great team you probably have, which is an important factor in happy employment – more so than the latest shiny equipment.

Brand recognition

Using your name/brand in an advert is important – people need to know who their employer is, but many adverts rely on this alone to convey information.

As so many vets are called similar names, or are part of a group, it can be difficult to know the exact location from just saying “contact” or similar.

If I need to look at your website to find out basics like the location of where I’ll work, I probably won’t and will engage with adverts that give me the basic information I need to continue my job hunt instead.