The job description format used by any particular organisation often changes from role to role and even for the same job. This inconsistency can make the job recruiting process challenging and run the risk of vital information being overlooked, leaving candidates playing the guessing game.
Have you described how successful candidates will fit into your company culture? Have you covered all the essential duties and responsibilities? It is hard to know with things all mixed up and a lack of consistency.
The most practical solution to avoid such woes when writing a job description is to create a structured format or use a job description template. In addition to giving you or your hiring manager access to more than 800 job descriptions, ready for job advertising on your careers page, social media channels, and job boards, this article discusses:
- What is a job description format?
- Why use a job description format?
- What is the format of a job description?
- Job description format examples
What Is A Job Description Format?
A job description format is a structure or style template for creating job descriptions. Having a format for a job description gives your company a document that is carefully arranged and can be used time and again when writing job descriptions for different job roles. The format is, in essence, a blank job description template.
Effective job description formats should include elements such as:
- The job title
- Job location
- Employment type
- Company overview
- Job summary
- Job duties and job responsibilities
- Essential qualifications
- Hard and soft skills needed
- Salary range
Why Use A Job Description Format?
There are many reasons why an employer or Human Resources Manager should use a job description format or job description templates. Writing job descriptions with a good and consistent format creates the best impression with potential candidates and sets a standard for future communications.
A JOB DESCRIPTION FORMAT SAVES TIME
A structured format or a good job description template will also save you time across the hiring process. Writing efficiency is improved, posting your open job position is quicker, candidate screening is simplified, and interview preparation is streamlined.
A STRUCTURED JOB DESCRIPTION ATTRACTS QUALIFIED CANDIDATES
A well-written job description will effectively communicate if the job opening requires specific skills or educational qualifications. You won’t waste a prospective employee’s time applying for a job they will never be considered. Instead, your company will collect a pool of qualified applicants who understand the job requirements and the knowledge and skills required to be competent.
A FORMATTED JOB DESCRIPTION HELPS CANDIDATES UNDERSTAND THE PERSONALITY CHARACTERISTICS YOU SEEK
Maintaining a healthy company culture often has its foundations in current employees’ personal characteristics and temperament. Suppose you onboard new employees who don’t have the right personality traits. In that case, team spirit, motivation, drive, and values can deteriorate. Writing a job description with a well-defined format will help ensure you communicate the working conditions new employees should expect and precisely what your ideal candidate looks like.
AN ACCURATE JOB DESCRIPTION CAN BE USED FOR MEASURING PERFORMANCE
Once your winning job description and job posting have done their work and you have successfully completed the recruitment process, Human Resources can use a great job description as a job requirements checklist for appraising performance.
What Is The Format Of A Job Description?
Here we provide further guidance and advice on what to include in the main sections within the job description format.
A job description includes the job title and this should be specific and include key phrases a job seeker will recognise or search for on job boards or even Google. The job title should avoid internal jargon, be concise (70-80 characters), and accurately describe the specific job.
The summary is a brief description that should convey your expectations and compel the right candidates to apply. We recommend stating the exact job location, why your company brand is unique, and the work hours/schedule. Master the craft of writing a job summary by reading our guide – What To Include In A Job Summary When Writing A Job Description.
RESPONSIBILITIES AND DUTIES
Outline the position’s responsibilities and prioritise those unique to your company to help attract the ideal candidate. List the daily activities and reporting structure, so potential employees know what to expect and get a glimpse of the bigger picture.
- How To Define What People Do In Their Jobs
- What Are The Duties, Tasks, And Skills To Include In Job Descriptions
SKILLS AND QUALIFICATIONS
List the essential education and skills needed, including physical abilities, soft skills, and certifications. Candidates expect job descriptions to include these, but don’t go too far. Job description templates often have all possible connotations, but you should only include those required, or else no candidate will be able to meet the bar you set.
You could denote skills, qualifications, and experience as ‘preferred,’ ‘essential,’ or ‘advantageous’ to help secure a successful candidate.
SALARY RANGE AND BENEFITS
Including the salary in job descriptions is vital, increasing applications from appropriately qualified individuals. Benefits are another essential aspect, and you are unlikely to see these in a job description template as they are often unique to the company.
Examples of benefits that can draw in candidates include flexible hours, remote working opportunities, tuition reimbursement, and unlimited (unpaid) holiday.
Job Description Format Examples
If you are searching for the best format of a job description we recommend viewing our job description examples and reading the following articles:
FAQs About Job Description Formats
Here we tackle you questions on formats for job descriptions.
A job description format is a structure that ensures job descriptions are organised, complete, and suitable for uploading as job ads on job boards and other advertising sites. Job description templates are sample job descriptions that go one step further. They briefly describe the role and suggest job responsibilities, relevant qualifications, and skills. Anyone can write a job description using an editable job description example.
Job description formats will help you find the best candidates and streamline the entire process.
The format of job descriptions typically refers to the sections within. Sections include job title, duties and responsibilities, location, to whom the position reports, physical demands, salary, qualifications, and skills.
The best format for a job description depends on the nature of the specific job. However, a good job description template includes the job title, job summary, qualifications and skills required, key responsibilities, and job duties. Write in the present tense and use gender neutral language to ensure legal compliance.
To create job descriptions in PDF format, you typically write a job description first, for example, in Microsoft Word format, and convert it into a PDF. Conversion is usually possible as a menu option, such as ‘save as,’ ‘export,’ or ‘print.