Create Effective Job Descriptions

Create Effective Job Descriptions

Some employers run into difficulty by producing lazy or ill-thought-through job descriptions when hiring. If your job description is vague, then the pool of candidates under consideration will be vague too. If it is specific and well-targeted, then your candidates will be. Here are our tips:

To really understand the scope of a job, it helps to have thoroughly defined it in writing. Your chances of recruiting top talent will improve dramatically if the position you want filled is carefully defined. Also, it says something positive to candidates about your organisation if you have taken the time and effort to craft an excellent job description.

Remember that job descriptions are not throw-away items, to be used at the hiring stage and never referred to again. They have an on-going purpose throughout the employment lifecycle, so it pays to take the time to get them right. The three main purposes of the job description are:

Candidate Attraction

To describe the role and specify the required track record of the desired person with the aim of attracting the right person for the role, either internally or externally.

Role Definition

To be a point of reference for the individual performing the role, spelling out their responsibilities and required level of performance – especially at appraisal time or when a promotion is being considered.

Management Reference

Especially for new managers, job descriptions are vital to understand the scope and responsibility, not only of their own role, but the roles of the staff they oversee.

Crafting The Job Description

A comprehensive job description will comprise the following elements:

  • Title of the job
  • Where the role sits within the team, department and wider business
  • Who the role reports to and other key interactions
  • Key areas of responsibility and the deliverables expected
  • Short, medium and long-term objectives
  • Scope for progression and promotion
  • Required education and training
  • Soft skills and personality traits necessary to excel
  • Location and travel requirements
  • Remuneration range and benefits available
  • Convey the organisation's culture and identity