Your business is growing and you need extra hands. How do you write a job description that will get a qualified person in the position you’re seeking to hire?
Here are some things to consider when writing up a job description.
A job description is a medium by which hiring managers communicate their needs to both external and internal candidates.
For the employer, the job description lays out essential information about the role, the candidate’s experience, skills, and readiness.
For the employee, the job description describes the responsibilities, tasks, and related duties of a position. It will often include additional information such as education, qualifications, and skills required for the role. You can also expect important details like working conditions, compensation offering, physical demands, and tools or equipment required.
It can be as short or as long as you like. As descriptive or vague as you want. It can also have hidden instructions to gauge people’s attention to detail. Most importantly, it should be clear and concise. You can use it briefly when posting a job offering and give the candidate more details during an interview.
Some critical questions to ask yourself as you write this are:
Be as specific as possible here to make their day-to-day and your performance evaluations easier.
Now that you’ve specified responsibilities and daily activities it is time to create your wishlist of skills, experience, and education. Who is your ideal candidate?
Take another stab at your wishlist and order it from most important to least important. Finally, add in what’s required and what’s optional.
Describe their education and experience that fit your culture. Do they have the soft skills to pull off their job function? Here are a few questions to consider when dreaming up the right candidate:
Describe the current team’s personality or the company’s culture. Jot down what you want and what you don’t want.
How much would you have to pay that ideal person and how likely it is to find that person? Decide if it’s an entry-level position or a higher tier that requires more experience and a higher starting salary.
A fair salary is a must, but how else can you entice a candidate to apply?
Consider adding monetary and non-monetary benefits besides salary. Sometimes people will take a lower-paying role if the health, dental, and retirement benefits are excellent. Or if they know there’s a lot of opportunity for growth at the company.
Determine ahead of time if there’s a salary cap or a merit increase schedule and what you’re comfortable paying year over year.
You now have everything you need to write your job description.
Start by writing the job title and a brief introduction to the company. Explain what the company does, how many employees you have, and your overall mission.
Next, add position details, including job requirements and day-to-day responsibilities. Ensure that they understand both the opportunities and the challenges of the role. The more transparent the better so nobody wastes their time.
Add in miscellaneous details like work hours, location, compensation, and start details.
Finally, list out the attributes that the ideal candidate would possess, ranging from education to prior work experience and soft skills. Ensure that they know what’s required and what’s optional.
We’ll leave you with some best practices for writing an effective job description:
The last and best piece of advice on writing job descriptions is don’t start from scratch. There are countless jobs out there just like the one you’re posting. Use them as inspiration and adapt them to your needs.