The modern job seeker isn’t just worried about getting enough hours or a high enough wage. They’re weighing the value of a job offer against their own availability and long-term career goals. Simply put, top talent puts a lot of thought into their next career move before choosing a workplace to land.
Busy hiring managers may be tempted to default to simple, cookie-cutter job descriptions that err on the side of vagueness and lack the focus required to target top talent. Additionally, small businesses may fall into the fad of getting too creative with job titles and losing out on search visiblility. Here are some tips for writing (or re-writing) your job descriptions to attract more talent.
Creating job titles.
Small businesses with flexibility in the workplace often fall victim to the temptation of inflating job titles. Whether the intention is to foster a “cooler” company brand, sound more modern and technologically apt, or appear bigger – adding vague terminology to the job title can confuse potential candidates when searching.
Additionally, “getting creative” with job titles will rank you lower in your search engine/job search results. Opt-out of using terminology like “rockstar” for sales teams and “guru” for middle managers. Focus on the mission and the rank.
Follow this simple formula: Mission + “Rank”
For example, some good job titles are:
Office manager, office administrator, office clerk, filing clerk
Sales manager, sales associate
These job titles are simple and descriptive, commonly used among other workplaces. Boost your SEO and visibility by listing your job titles as terms people are already using/searching for.
Be clear about expectations.
Start by crafting a bulleted list of the essential daily duties of the job at hand. Include what types of projects and expectations are involved in the position. Edit your list down so that you’re given a comprehensive understanding of the job at a glance.
– Daily responsibilities
– Long-term responsibilities and projects
– Overall expectations and how performance is evaluated.
– Physical demands of the job role
After you’ve got your outline of the job description, think of how this role fits into the company culture. Is this a position where your candidate will be working closely with a group, or on their own?
Create job requirements based on the responsibilities at hand.
Having a laundry list of job requirements may seem like you’re filtering and distilling to get the best of the best candidates.
As you’re rewriting your job description to attract a new hire, now is a great time to reevaluate which job requirements are a “must have” versus “preferred.” Do you have an excessive list of requirements, or are they too vague? Some questions to ask yourself are:
– What work experience level is required?
– Does this require formal education? If so, what level?
– For safety purposes and legalities, are there any certifications required?
Simplify your formatting. Format your job description for people who scan. Use headlines and bulleted lists with short sentences. Obviously you want your candidate to read the description. But you need to think of the way they’ll be reading – probably on the go, in their inbox or on a job search site, on their phone. Using simpler language, shorter sentences, and a simple, easy to read format, you’re more likely to catch the attention of talent you want.