One of your employees is moving out of the state, and you are faced with the daunting task of replacing him. You shudder at the idea of having to find a candidate who is as qualified and professional as the employee you’re losing. Where do you start? The first step in finding quality candidates is writing an attractive job description; job descriptions are critical in creating a quality candidate pool because you (and your company) never get a second chance to make a first impression. Here are a few key things that transform a generic and boring job description into an opportunity that potential candidates will get excited about:

  • Job Title, Role Within the Organization, and working relationships. This includes not only the official name of the position you’re looking to fill, but also the department within the company that this job is associated with. This is also the area of the job description where you will explain how the position ties into the overall goals of the company, as well as who the candidate will be working with. Example: As Venue Relations Coordinator, you will work closely with our experiential marketing team. The Venue Relations Coordinator position reports to John Doe and Mary Jane, Senior Project Managers.
  • Forgetting to include the location of the position you’re trying to fill will result is a massive amount of resumes from applicants who will immediately withdraw their application upon learning that they would have to relocate in order to work.
  • A fairly common aspect of the job description overlooked by many hiring managers and HR personnel is the About Us section. It is so important that you explain what it is that your company does, as well as the company’s culture and environment. Many hiring managers also choose to include vital statistics, such as growth, in order to give the potential candidate a better understanding as to where the company is headed in the future. The About Us Section can also include characteristics of the company, such as size.
  • Perhaps the most important pieces of information to include in a job description that will attract high quality candidates are main job duties and responsibilities. Potential candidates need a firm understanding of what will be expected of them, and having a vague or non-descript job duties and responsibilities section will leave the high quality candidates thinking they are overqualified and the lower quality candidates thinking they have what it takes to succeed in this position.
  • Directly following the job duties and responsibilities sections should be the prerequisite and requirements section. Information to include in this section is the years of experience, prerequisite positions held, necessary skill sets, and any certifications or memberships candidates should have. Omitting this section will leave you sorting through hundreds of resumes submitted by unqualified candidates and be a waste on your time and theirs.
  • Special working conditions, if applicable, should be made known from the beginning. Putting these out in the open will ensure that the candidates who apply are serious about the position regardless of working conditions they might not be used to. Examples of special working conditions include odd hours, on-call responsibilities, and physical duties.
  • Last but not least, include information that will make the position even more attractive to potential applicants. Information to include in this section is benefits, training, travel, and advancement opportunities. This is also a great opportunity to show some extra perks of working for your company, such as casual dress, the ability to work remotely, and any discounts that employees may receive (example: Starbucks employees receive discounts on AT&T and Apple products).

Replacing an employee can be a frustrating and challenging task, but writing an effective and attractive job description is the first step in not only making the process easier on yourself as a hiring manager, but finding the highest quality candidates.

Written by Katie Fidler

Investing in a Lifetime of Success,

Angela Roberts


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