One of the unexpectedly challenging parts of the hiring process can be writing the job description for the position that you’re trying to fill. Coming up with the perfect job description is important because it determines what kind of applicants you’ll encounter and ultimately the potential employees you’ll have to choose from. You want to attract top talent; hard-working and motivated employees who have a suitable skill set for the job at hand. For this reason, you need to ensure that you have an eloquently written job description that accurately reflects the role it is advertising. Here are some helpful tips on how to write a winning job description.
A Well-Thought-Out Title
Potential applicants should be able to have an understanding of what the job entails and if it’s suitable for them from the job title alone. For example, if the role will involve managing a team and delegating tasks, the word manage should be somewhere in the title. You don’t want a job title that is too vague or too broad but also don’t want to make the title so specific and niche that candidates are put off from applying. It should be no more than 80 characters long and avoid buzzwords or internal lingo that could confuse people. Go for a job title that is familiar, concise and searchable.
Use “You” Pronouns In The Description
Talk directly to the candidates by using ‘you’ pronouns throughout the description. This helps to make the job posting more personal and allows potential employees to reflect on if they are capable of the job by visualising themselves doing it. Put the focus on the candidate rather than the employer. Using targeted questions or statements also adds to this. Consider starting the job posting with a question like ‘Do you want to work for a forward-thinking company that wants to make the world a better place?’or something along these lines. A question like this helps to effectively summarise the type of person you’re looking for. This is a good way of appealing to your candidate and tapping into the qualities that your company wants.
With so many people looking for jobs online, job descriptions have to be searchable so that your posting can be seen by as many potential candidates as possible. Without the inclusion of important keywords, people won’t be able to find the job. However, it is important when compiling the job description that you are using keywords and not buzzwords. A keyword is a descriptive word that is searchable and helps to retrieve different web pages. A buzzword is a fashionable and fun term, like data guru or coding ninja, that may make a job sound good but doesn’t reflect the type of terms that serious candidates will be looking for.
When deciding on the best keywords to include in your job description, consider what your target audience will be searching for and use this to help make the description more specific. For example, rather than just saying it’s a sales position, include the phrase ‘financial services sales consultant’ to tailor the position to the right audience. This doesn’t mean the posting needs to be boring and full of dull, professional language. Use the 70/30 rule and include a majority of relevant keywords as well as fun, interesting language to attract the right candidate.
Outline The Job Requirements and Responsibilities
The tasks and responsibilities of the potential employee are what should form the basis of your job description as this is essentially a rundown of how they will be spending their days should they be hired. For this reason, it’s important to identify the types of duties they will have, what results they should be delivering, the extent of their authority and what they will be responsible for. From reading this section of the job description, a potential candidate should have a clear understanding of what their working day would be comprised of and if they are capable of the job.
Determine Essential (And Desirable) Skills And Qualifications
The next step after talking about what the role entails is to describe the type of person you’re looking for. You need to put together a list of key criteria that successful candidate needs to possess. Be aware of not confusing qualifications with certain skills and the difference between preferred and required skills.
Use Bullet Points
The use of bullet points helps to break up and structure your job description, ensuring it is easy to read and understand. No one wants to read through long chunks of unbroken text and the way your description looks from a visual point of you could put people off reading it.
Tell Them About Your Company
Part of the role of a job description is to give an insight into what it would be like to work in that particular role or position. In order to give candidates an idea of what a particular job would be like, you should use the job posting to discuss a little bit about what it is like to work at your company. Allow them to get a glimpse of the company culture through the writing. You want to attract employees who are not only qualified and have the right skills, but who also going to fit in with your current employees and work well within the team.
You want to woo your potential candidates by showing them through the description that yours is a company that they should want to work for. A unique and exciting job description will stand out and set you above other employers. Highlight meaningful benefits that will be available to the successful candidate. This means more than just the salary, talk about the special perks they may receive, their learning and development opportunities and wellness programs that are offered.
Contributor: Ellie Saunders
Ellie Saunders is a young mother who is passionate about digital businesses. She is currently enjoying her marketing role at eVoice, a place where businesses can get virtual and toll free numbers. You can email Ellie here.