Articles for Employers

Are You Getting the Personal Training Candidates You Asked For?

PTs

Across facilities, locations and employers, Personal Training roles vary enormously.

In job advertising, however, these differences are not always as clearly defined as they could be. While there’s a significant amount of crossover in all Personal Training jobs, if you’re looking to get the best candidate for your facility, drilling down to some of the finer details could be of value.

Following are some common variations…

  • Traditional equipment / Contemporary equipment / Minimal or no equipment
  • Specific training systems / Freedom to train as preferred
  • Experience required / Experience not required
  • Indoor / Outdoor
  • One on one / Group / Mixture of both
  • Additional responsibilities / Personal Training only
  • Mentoring / No mentoring
  • Management opportunities / Personal Training only
  • Structured career development / Ad hoc career development
  • Employed / Rental

And the list goes on.

If you fully appreciate the nature of the role / clients / conditions / etc. and articulate this in the job ad, it will increase the chances of that job ad resonating with the most relevant candidates.

Take, for example, the practice of reaching out to both experienced and new personal Trainers in job ads.

While the reason for this is obvious (larger net = more fish), is the ad potentially missing the connection with the best at either end of the experience spectrum? Consider things from the candidates perspective…

If you’re an experienced Trainer looking for the next career move, you’re looking for a job ad that appeals to your sense of investment in the industry. After all, you’ve already committed heavily to your career. If you’re a Trainer with a thirst for knowledge and a desire to take your career as far as you can, are you likely to be drawn to an ad where you’ll be working alongside a bunch of newbies?

For the non experienced Trainer, the most appealing job ads are going to be those that offer support and mentoring, especially in the early days. Working among experienced Trainers in an established setting can be quite intimidating. For many of these new Trainers, the gap between ‘qualified’ and ‘experienced’ can seem insurmountable, especially without some clearly identified professional hand holding.

That’s not to say that recruiting for both new and experienced Trainers at the same time is not possible, just that there might be value in changing the approach. That is, focus on one group with a reference to the other. For example, in an ad that clearly reaches out to experienced Trainers, you might add a line stating that “An opportunity also exists for an inexperienced Personal Trainer to develop among our professional team. To be considered, apply within.” Not only does this approach avoid watering down the ad for experienced Trainers, it’s actually solidifying the value of experienced Trainers to the Personal Training team.

Whether it’s regarding experience or any other element of the role, the more specific you can be in your ad, the easier it is for the right Trainers to identify with the role.

How will this increased specificity affect your applications?

The more specific you are, the less applications you’re likely to get. HOWEVER those that do come through should be more suited to the available role. This means less wasted time and less chance the candidate will change their mind after going through your entire interview process.

So what’s your approach? Are you using your knowledge of the role to attract a particular candidate or are using a general approach designed to net a larger number of applications?

Do you have an opinion on this? Please share it.

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