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What To Include In A Job Summary When Writing A Job Description

What To Include In A Job Summary When Writing A Job Description

Crafting a good job description is akin to laying the foundation for a masterpiece. In the ever-evolving landscape of recruitment, it’s the linchpin that connects companies with their next star player. The heart of this foundation? The job summary. Often, it’s the first point of contact between your organisation and potential candidates, setting the tone for what’s to follow. But what makes one truly stand out in a sea of job postings? How can it be fine-tuned to attract only the most qualified candidates?

Our guide delves deep into the anatomy of a compelling job summary, demystifying the art and science behind it. From clearly outlining job responsibilities to weaving in the essence of your brand, we’ll equip you with the tools, comprehensive knowledge, and insights to write a job description that not only elevates your recruiting process but ensures your future employee aligns seamlessly with your company’s ethos. Whether you’re a seasoned HR professional or a business owner dipping your toes into the recruitment pool, this guide promises to illuminate the path to crafting job summaries that resonate.

In our job summary guide, we explore the following:

  • What is the difference between a job summary and a job description?
  • Understanding the role of a job summary?
  • Key elements of a stellar job summary?
  • How to write a job summary for effective job descriptions
  • An example job summary
  • The Bigger Picture: The Job Summary in the Recruitment Process
  • Where can I find job summary examples?

What Is The Difference Between A Job Summary And A Job Description?

Differences Between Job Description And Job Summaries

Navigating the recruitment landscape can sometimes feel like decoding a foreign language, especially when terms like ‘job summary’ and ‘job description’ are bandied about. At first glance, they might seem interchangeable, but in the nuanced world of HR, they serve distinct purposes. Unravelling these differences is key to ensuring you attract the right candidates and set clear expectations from the outset.

job summary is your elevator pitch. Think of it as the trailer to a movie, giving qualified candidates a glimpse into the role. It’s a concise, snapshot-like overview that captures the essence of the position, often highlighting key responsibilities, qualifications, and the role’s significance within the organisation. Its primary function? To grab attention and entice prospective applicants to delve deeper.

On the other hand, a job description is the full-length feature film. It’s an in-depth breakdown of the role, covering all the finer details. Here’s how they stack up:

Depth Of Detail:

  • Job Summary: Provides a brief overview and will set expectations
  • Job Description: Gives a comprehensive account of the role, including whom the position reports, company mission, job purpose, and operations performed

Job Summary Length:

  • Job Summary: Short and snappy, often just a few sentences
  • Job Description: Can run several pages, detailing every aspect of the role, from essential physical requirements to skills required

Job Summary Purpose:

  • Job Summary: Aims to attract and engage potential candidates
  • Job Description: Sets clear expectations, outlining duties, working knowledge, minimum qualifications, must-have skills, nice-to-have skills, personality traits, and more

Understanding the distinction between these two is paramount for effective recruitment. While the job summary might reel candidates in, it’s the job description that truly informs and guides their decision-making process. Ensure both are crafted with clarity and precision to create a seamless hiring experience.

While we are discussing differences, you may be wondering how a job specification differs from a job summary or job description. Discover the answer to these questions in our blog – What To Include In A Job Specification – covering topics such as how to write a job specification and what to include in a job spec.

Understanding The Role Of A Job Summary?

The Role Of Summaries In Job Descriptions

In the bustling arena of recruitment, first impressions are paramount. This is where the job summary shines. Think of it as the amuse-bouche of the job world – that tantalising bite-sized morsel that gives you a hint of the feast to come. Its primary role? To captivate and compel potential candidates into wanting more. Unlike a detailed job description that dives deep into the nuances of a role, the job summary offers a bird’s-eye view, delivering the essence of the position in a succinct and engaging manner. In today’s digital age, where attention spans are fleeting, a well-crafted job summary acts as your frontline ambassador, piquing interest and ensuring that your vacancy stands out in a sea of opportunities.

Key Elements Of A Stellar Job Summary?

To create a job summary that resonates and intrigues, you’ll need to distil the essence of the role into its most pivotal components. Here are the essential ingredients:

  • Job Title: It should be clear, concise, and reflective of the role. Remember, this is often the first thing a potential candidate sees, so make it count!
  • Primary Responsibilities: Offer a snapshot of the core duties without overwhelming the reader. The aim? To provide just enough information to intrigue without overwhelming.
  • Key Qualifications: Highlight the essential skills or qualifications, ensuring potential candidates can quickly assess their suitability for the role.
  • Company Culture: In a few words, convey the vibe and ethos of your organisation. Are you a dynamic startup or a well-established industry leader? Let them know.
  • Unique Selling Points (USPs): What sets this role apart? Maybe it’s the chance to work on groundbreaking projects, or perhaps it’s the unparalleled career progression opportunities. Give your prospective candidates a reason to choose you.

Crafting an outstanding job summary is an art, blending the essence of the role with the allure of opportunity. When executed with finesse, it becomes a powerful tool, drawing in the right candidates and setting the stage for a fruitful recruitment journey.

How To Write A Job Summary For Effective Job Descriptions

Writing A Job Description Summary

The modern job market is a bustling bazaar of opportunities. Amidst this whirlwind of roles and industries, your job summary is the beacon that attracts the right top talent to your shores. Much like a masterful chef crafts a dish that’s both visually appealing and delectably flavoursome, your job summary should be an enticing blend of clarity and allure. It’s more than just a functional overview of the role; it’s your first pitch, your opening gambit in the recruitment dance. To ensure your job summaries hit the mark, here’s a rundown of the dos and don’ts:


  • Be Clear and Concise: Stick to the essentials and avoid overwhelming potential candidates with excessive details. Precision is key.
  • Showcase Your USPs: What sets your company or the role apart? Highlight these unique selling points to make your vacancy stand out.
  • Use Active Language: Phrases like ‘drive results’ or ‘lead a team’ paint a vivid picture of the role’s expectations.
  • Match the Company’s Tone: Whether your organisation is formal and corporate or casual and startup-esque, ensure the summary aligns with your brand’s voice.
  • Include Essential Qualifications: Highlight the non-negotiable qualifications or skills, ensuring the right candidates are drawn to apply.


  • Avoid Jargon: Technical terms or industry-specific language can alienate qualified candidates or confuse those from other sectors.
  • Don’t Be Too Vague: While brevity is essential, don’t sacrifice clarity. Ensure the role’s essence is still effectively communicated to ensure sufficient comprehension.
  • Steer Clear of Buzzwords: Terms like ‘rockstar’ or ‘ninja’ can feel out of place and don’t provide clarity on the role’s actual requirements.
  • Ignore Generic Phrases: ‘Hard worker’ or ‘team player’ are expected in most roles and don’t offer specific insights about the vacancy.

Crafting an impactful job summary isn’t about cramming in as much information as possible, but selecting and presenting the most pertinent details in a way that resonates with the best candidates. Remember, in the world of recruitment, your job summary is the window to the role’s soul. Make it inviting, make it clear, and above all, make it memorable.

An Example Job Summary

Job Description Examples

A superb way to bring our advice and guidance together on writing an effective job description summary is to look at an example, analyse its structure, and identify areas of improvement.

Example Job Summary:

“Join our dynamic team as a Business Development Analyst! At [Company X], we’re seeking a strategic thinker with a knack for numbers to delve into market trends, spearhead client relations, and drive our growth initiatives. Ideal candidates possess a robust analytical skill set, a passion for building relationships, and a minimum of three years’ experience in a similar industry. If you’re eager to shape strategies and thrive in a fast-paced environment, we’d love to hear from you.”


So, let’s analyse the structure of the job description summary and highlight suggestions for improvement.


  1. Engaging Introduction: The opening sentence is welcoming, immediately highlighting the position and the company’s vibrant culture.
  2. Core Responsibilities: The summary delves into key duties, such as analysing market trends and managing client relations.
  3. Qualifications: There’s a quick mention of the required skills and experience.
  4. Company Culture: Phrases like ‘dynamic team’ and ‘fast-paced environment’ give a taste of the company’s work culture.

Areas of Improvement:

  1. Specificity: While it mentions ‘a similar industry’, being more specific about the industry or sector would provide better clarity to potential candidates.
  2. USPs (Unique Selling Points): What makes this role or the company unique? Perhaps touching on specific growth opportunities, training programmes, or unique projects could make the position more attractive.
  3. Broad Phrases: Terms like ‘strategic thinker’ and ‘knack for numbers’ could be further defined. For instance, specifying certain analytical tools or methods would offer a clearer picture of what’s expected.
  4. Beneficial Attributes: The summary could benefit from highlighting soft skills or personal attributes that would mesh well with the role, such as ‘collaborative mindset’ or ‘proactive approach.’

In essence, while the Business Development Analyst Job Summary provides a good overview of the position, refining its specificity with enough detail and expanding on what makes the role and company distinct will ensure it’s even more compelling to the right job seekers.

The Bigger Picture: The Job Summary In The Recruitment Process

Finding Qualified Candidates With Job Descriptions

In the intricate tapestry of recruitment, the job summary emerges not as a mere thread, but as a defining weave that shapes the entire design. At its core, the recruitment process is a journey of mutual discovery: organisations seeking the ideal candidate, and aspirants searching for their dream role or job title. Amid this confluence of aspirations, the job summary serves as a lighthouse, guiding both parties towards their ideal match.

Imagine navigating the vast ocean of opportunities without a compass. The sheer volume of roles, industries, and organisations can be overwhelming for job seekers. It’s here that a well-crafted job summary shines, offering clarity amidst the chaos. By encapsulating the essence of a role, it ensures that a vacancy doesn’t just garner applications, but attracts the right applications.

Conversely, for employers, it sharpens the focus, refining the pool of candidates and ensuring that those who apply are genuinely aligned with the role’s requirements. In essence, a compelling job summary doesn’t just streamline the recruitment process; it elevates it, turning it from a task of sifting through CVs to a journey of discovering talent that truly resonates with the organisation’s ethos and vision. In the grand theatre of recruitment, the job summary is more than a mere prelude; it’s the very heart of the narrative.

Where Can I Find Job Summary Examples?

Examples Of Summaries And Great Job Descriptions

You can find job summary examples for any job title in our job description templates. Our job description library includes examples for hundreds of job titles, from a Parking Attendants Job Description Template to a Business Development Associate Job Description Template. You can use the insights from these to complete a standard job description template. Here, you can view and download the job description template and craft a compelling job description ready for job posting on job boards and attracting qualified candidates.

Find sample job summaries in job description examples in the following categories:

Job Summary FAQs

If you still have questions about writing a job summary to ensure a well-written job description, you should find the answers here:


Crafting a summary of a job description requires distilling the essence of the role into a concise and engaging paragraph. Start by identifying the primary responsibilities and expectations associated with the position. Follow this by highlighting the core skills or qualifications required. Ensure you convey the importance of the role within the organisation and how it contributes to the company’s overall goals. It’s vital to keep your language clear, compelling, and free from jargon, so prospective candidates quickly grasp the role’s nature and its significance.


1. Job Title & Position: Begin with a clear and descriptive title that encapsulates the role’s essence and level within the organisation.
2. Purpose & Objectives: Describe the overall purpose of the job and its primary objectives. What contributions does this role make to the company’s success?
3. Key Responsibilities: List the main duties and tasks the candidate will be expected to perform. Be specific, using action verbs to illustrate each responsibility.
4. Qualifications & Skills: Detail the necessary qualifications, skills, experience, and any other prerequisites needed to excel in the role. This can range from educational qualifications to soft and technical skills.
5. Reporting & Relationships: Outline the role’s reporting lines and any team or departmental interactions. Who will they report to, and who, if anyone, will report to them?


Job descriptions are a comprehensive document that outline the specifics of a role in detail. It includes the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, what specific skills are required, reporting lines, working conditions, company description, and sometimes even the terms of employment, such as salary range or benefits. On the other hand, a job summary is a concise overview of the job description. Think of it as a snapshot or a teaser, providing a quick insight into the role’s fundamental aspects without delving into the finer details. While the job description is a full portrait of the role, the job summary gives a quick glimpse, enticing qualified candidates to learn more

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