Getting the right people to apply is something that a lot of businesses struggle with. Your staff is your biggest assets, so it really pays to know how to find the people you need. To put your business on the path to success, take a look at our top tips for writing the best job description you possibly can.
Don’t go over the top with the jargon and buzzwords
The first thing to say is that you don’t want to put people off before they even get started. A lot of people will be intimidated by a description that’s bursting with jargon. If they’re not conversant in it, they’ll assume they don’t have the skills or experience you’re looking for.
Whilst a small amount of industry-specific terms is a useful shorthand, try and keep them to a minimum. There’s no use in crafting some incredibly complex wording that will be understood internally, but by no one outside your company. Take the time to get it right, and you won’t run the risk of putting off the best and brightest with your first few sentences.
Be concise and precise, every step of the way
This point follows on naturally from the previous one, and it’s all about getting your message out there. Being concise means using as few words as possible, and being precise means you say exactly what you mean.
These are clearly two characteristics that you want your prospective new hire to have, so why not demonstrate them yourself? Pushing yourself to make your description evermore concise also has the added benefit of challenging your understanding of what you’re looking for.
If you find that you can’t easily articulate the skills and personality traits you’re looking for, the chances are you don’t really know. Hiring the right person is as much about knowing who you’re looking for, as it is being able to entice them once you’ve found them.
Clearly say what your expectations are so you can align them with those of your applicants
So many relationships breakdown due to misaligned expectations, that it’s something you’re going to need to address. If someone is naturally on the same page as you then this won’t be a problem. But the issue is that if you’ve never worked with them for an extended period of time, how do you know?
If you want to spot the right candidate, add a section on responsibilities and expectations that are broken up into a succinct set of bullet points. This will focus the attention of your applicants on what it is that you want from them in return. If everyone knows what’s expected of them, then you’re far more likely to attract the right fit for your role.
Emphasize the salary, the benefits, and then the experience
Perks and salaries are great. After all, they’re why everyone goes to work. Don’t shy away from this, or ask for people who want to work purely for the love of the job. This sets unrealistic expectations from day one, and your applicants may get the impression that progression may be hard to come by.
The best way to broach the issue of salaries and benefits is to list them clearly and precisely. But to then immediately follow up with the experience that you require in return. This will allow you to catch the eye of the applicant, before focusing them on what you expect from them.
It’s a simple piece of psychology that shows you have something to offer, and that you require something specific in return. Once you make this connection, you’ll find that the right people begin to gravitate towards you.
Keep the length to 700-1000 words for maximum impact
Nobody likes to have to read for 20 mins as a description endlessly repeats itself — it always comes near the top of any list of annoying listing mistakes. People want to have all the information they need to decide whether your role is for them.
The ideal is if you can keep to within 700-1000 words. This will allow you enough words to sell yourself and list all of the fine details. But won’t result in a description that takes any longer than 5 minutes to read through. This is perfect if you want to capture the attention of people in the age of social media and the smartphone.
Give the big picture of your company so that you create early buy-in
Everyone wants the prestige of working for a successful and forward-thinking company that’s clearly going places. You can really add value to your job description by selling the company as a whole, not just the specific role that you have open.
The great thing about this approach is that it allows you to paint a much bigger picture for your applicants. If they believe what you say, get excited by it, and want to be involved, then you’re halfway to creating buy-in. Finding motivated people who want to join your team for more reasons than a great salary is the secret to running a successful business.
Don’t expect too much from your applicants — be realistic about who’s going to apply
Thinking that your business is the best sports brand, the best writing service, or the best whatever it is you do, is only natural. It’s an ambitious competitive instinct that allows you to attack every single day. But it can also be your downfall when it comes to writing the best job description you can.
When you work through all of the tips above, also take a step back and be realistic. Build a profile of your ideal candidate, then build a profile of the candidate your listing will attract. You need to factor in the salary you’re willing to pay, the experience you’re looking for, and the skills you require. Put all three of these together and you’ll see who you’re likely to attract.
From there you can either adjust your expectations or increase the benefits that you offer. This will allow you to find the right fit, at the right time, for the right price.
Now that you’ve heard how to do it, all you need to do is go and do it. It’s the only way to find the perfect new hire that will help drive your business forward.
Daniela McVicker is a career coach and an editor at Trust My Paper and Top Essay Writing. She’s also a business communication coach, helping future job applicants to write business emails to help them achieve success on their career paths.