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How To Write A Job Description

How To Write A Job Description

The recruitment market has become an even more competitive space with recent events transforming the way we work and where we work from. While world events don’t affect the ways in which we create a job description or use a job description template, attracting qualified candidates means writing a job description and job advert that appeals to the current mindset of job seekers.

In this article, we explore:

  1. How Working Conditions Have Changed In The Past 12 Months
  2. Our Top Tip For Writing A Compelling Job Description
  3. What We Can Learn From The Best Places To Work In The UK
  4. How To Choose A Job Title
  5. How To Write A Job Description Summary
  6. Adding Duties And Responsibilities To Job Descriptions
  7. Adding Skills And Requirements To A Job Description
  8. Getting Started With Sample Job Descriptions

1. How Working Conditions Have Changed In The Past 12 Months

Workplace Job Description Template

The workplace has changed significantly over the past few years. In response to the pandemic, many employees moved to remote working, employers embraced flexibility and rose to unexpected challenges, and both adopted new technologies. Some jobs remain 100% remote, while others have taken on a hybrid nature, mixing work from home with days in the office.

However, keeping your business running on a daily basis and protecting your employees’ safety and physical health is only part of the picture.

2. Our Top Tip For Writing A Compelling Job Description

Sample Job Description Template

Employee happiness and mental wellbeing are the driving factors of increased employee productivity, loyalty, and attendance. People respect employers that make allowances for our daily lives, which for many has included working from home and allowing them to have a career, care for self-isolating relatives, and home-school children. It takes strong leadership, clear communication, and trust to maintain or become a high-performing organisation in the current landscape.

To write a compelling job description, ensure your hiring managers say how your business nurtures employee happiness and mental wellbeing.

3. What We Can Learn From The Best Places To Work In The UK?

How To Boost The Number Of Candidates

The best workplaces acquire 40% more applicants on average when listing a job advert, with excellent brand advocacy and retention levels. If you are looking to recruit the top talent, whether en-mass or for a single essential position, your job descriptions and job ads need to demonstrate how your company culture and company values reflect supporting employees during a time of unprecedented challenges.

To develop your company culture and employer brand, begin updating your descriptions by analysing and considering performance standards, the company mission and long term objectives, competencies, job location, hours, line management expectations, and travel expectations. Ultimately, this could be a person’s first impression of your company, so it is crucial to get a great job description right and show your target audience they are cultural fit for your open position! 

4. How To Choose A Job Title

Job Titles That Help You Attract Candidates

To attract potential candidates, you need to leverage targeted job titles. Targeted job titles should be what job seekers might use to search for a vacancy on a job site or include in a job alert on a job board.

When choosing the job title for your job description or job ad, it will help to:

1. KEEP THE FOCUS ON WHAT THE JOB ENTAILS

The job title should give potential applicants a clear understanding of the role.

2. CHOOSE A JOB TITLE RELEVANT TO YOUR INDUSTRY OR BUSINESS SECTOR

Industry-relevant job titles will help your target audience with the right experience, find your job ads.

3. AVOID GENDERED LANGUAGE AND BIAS

To avoid gender bias and gendered language, assess and update your jobs titles. For example, cameraman could become camera operator, and the job titles waitress or waiter could become server.

4. MATCH THE JOB TITLE APPROPRIATELY TO THE SALARY RANGE AND SENIORITY

Using words such as junior, assistant, and senior will help ensure you attract qualified applicants who aren’t over or under qualified. Matching the job title to the salary range, benefits package, and seniority will also help manage candidate expectations, and save your hiring manager hours of screening and interviews.

5. AVOID INDUSTRY JARGON AND ABBREVIATIONS

Candidates don’t all use the same language, so avoiding industry jargon, internal terminology, and abbreviations is the best practice unless they are well-known, such as VP or HR. Avoiding jargon is vital if your company seeks a fresh perspective attained by securing the top talent from other business sectors.

6. AVOID INFORMAL WORDS

Avoiding informal words and being overly creative is essential for an effective job posting. Ask yourself if clients, investors, and vendors will take the position seriously, or can they ask for and find the person they want to contact?

5. How To Write A Job Description Summary

Job Descriptions For The Best Candidates

The Job summary should sell the job to your ideal candidate, explaining the compelling tasks of the role and how the specific role contributes to your organisation’s success and growth. Effective job descriptions that are to be used as a job ad should include a brief company description, company mission, and a hint of the company’s culture, so job seekers can assess if they will be a good fit.

To attract a potential employee, you still need concise job descriptions. To avoid writing a job description that is too long and doesn’t give a positive impression, consider including links to your company’s career page, social media channels, and employee testimonials that promote your employer brand and company culture. You can also use bullet points instead of paragraphs to create a concise description that a job seeker can divulge in a moment.

Before writing your next job description, discover more on this topic by reading what should be on a company careers page.

6. Adding Duties And Responsibilities To Job Descriptions

The Duties Of Candidates

A good job description should help potential candidates understand the role’s core responsibilities. Defining the duties and responsibilities is an essential part of the recruitment process and is good for both the employer and job seekers, as both sides clearly understand what is expected.

A superb approach that helps candidates understand their responsibilities is to use a bullet point list of responsibilities and duties. With a quick glance, bullet points with a brief description help potential candidates assess if the role is right for them, equating to more candidates with the profile of your ideal employee.

Are you a hiring manager or business owner struggling to write a list of job responsibilities? If so, get your hiring process off to a flying start and identify specific responsibilities by reading how to define what people do in their jobs.

7. Adding Skills And Requirements To A Job Description

The Skills And Requirements Of Jobs

Even if you are hiring job seekers for an entry-level role, potential candidates will need relevant skills and possibly required qualifications to fulfil job requirements and complete daily tasks. Job requirements might be several years of experience in your industry or preferred qualifications such as a diploma or degree.

Soft skills are desired skills or nice to have skills that are personality traits, such as positivity and compassion, or work skills, such as problem-solving and organisation.

A good job description should clearly define what constitutes qualified candidates. This is essential for both the company and job seekers, so neither side invests time in an application process that ultimately goes nowhere.

You can explore the topic of soft skills, technical skills, nice to have skills, and personality traits further by reading What are the duties, task, and skills to include in job descriptions.

8. Getting Started With Sample Job Descriptions

How To Start Hiring For Your Jobs

When writing job descriptions, there is a lot of free support. We ourselves have a large job description template library to help you write an effective job description and job summary that helps find the right candidate. We also help you to advertise your job across a variety of online job boards and social media channels, as well as providing recruitment software to help you manage candidates, applicants, interviews and more!

The best part is it costs significantly less than hiring a recruitment agency. With fixed cost recruitment, you pay a one-off fixed fee for job advert exposure. Take a look at our job advertising packages, get in touch or click here to learn more about the benefits of fixed-rate recruitment.

Writing Job Descriptions FAQs

Write A Job Description FAQs

Here we answer you job description writing questions.

WHAT IS A JOB DESCRIPTION?

A job description tells the person the function and main purposes of the position. A good job description consists of all responsibilities, duties, and tasks. It should contain enough detail to tell the individual job seeker what is expected and the objectives of the position. To appear in search results when used to attract job seekers and your ideal employee, ensure it has a relevant job title and is free from grammatical errors.

WHAT DOES EVERY JOB DESCRIPTION NEED TO INCLUDE?

A job description / job specification should include duties, responsibilities, tasks, and where the position sits within the company’s reporting hierarchy. To write a job description, you can use a job description template to create a narrative of the core responsibilities, adding the ‘uniqueness’ that comes from the company culture and how the role differs from that of other employers.

IS A JOB DESCRIPTION THE SAME AS A JOB ADVERTISEMENT?

Job descriptions differ from job ads, although many employers and recruiters use the terms interchangeably. Strictly speaking, a well-written job description is an internal document that defines the position. Employees can refer to the job description to find out what is expected of them.

A company, Human Resources department, and line managers may use the job description for performance reviews and disciplinary procedures. Effective job descriptions can also be converted into job ads for the hiring process, by adding important company details.

To be used as a job advert, you will need to add what the company offers (competitive salary, health insurance), the location (city, office, remote, hybrid), and details of the company culture and values, which are vital for attracting quality candidates who are on a job hunt.

A job description used for hiring the best candidates also needs a call to action. Your job ad CTA could be a link to an online application form or an email address where qualified candidates can send a cover letter and CV.

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A JOB DESCRIPTION?

The purpose of a job description is to accurately explain the duties and requirements of a position within a company. Our job description templates give you a base document, which can easily be leveraged for the hiring process and finding the best candidates.

WHAT IS INCLUSIVE LANGUAGE?

Inclusive job descriptions speak to a diverse range of candidates while accurately describing the required skills, such as problem-solving. When you write an inclusive job description, you show candidates that you consider all applications, regardless of candidate background, disability, gender, or status.

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