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How to write an effective job description
10 July 2014
An effective position description is essential to ensure the right person is recruited for the job and to the company. Start your position description with a detailed background of the company, then move into the specifics of the role.
Define the position objectives and responsibilities
Position descriptions should include objectives that clearly explain the purpose of the job. Outline the responsibilities and duties grouped together in key areas and list both ongoing and daily duties in order of importance. Explain the role using terms that are familiar to the candidates you are targeting so as to clearly demonstrate the depth of accountability and authority of the position.
Introduce associated roles and relationships
An understanding about the workplace relationships the role is required to develop provides extra context on the breadth of the position. Outline how the position interacts with other people in the business and the levels of authority the people in the relationship have. Also detail lines of internal and external communication and any other relationship management required by the position.
Outline the position qualifications
For the best chance of attracting the right candidate, it is important to list the criteria that they must have to be considered for the job. This includes specifications for education, experience, knowledge, technical skills and any transferable skills. By linking these to the responsibilities of the position, job seekers can determine if they have the necessary qualifications, experience and skills to complete the required tasks.
Identify the logistics of the job
It is useful to detail the practical aspects of the job to further help candidates assess their suitability for the role. Include the positions location, equipment or systems used, salary and bonus or incentive details, term of employment, department the position is part of and performance review procedures.
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A job description could be the first time a potential candidate is made aware of your organisation and the role available. To determine their suitability, the reader will be more adept if the job description includes:
- The background of the company
- Clear duties listed in order or importance, and
- Details the relationship to other employees and departments
Attract qualified applicants by including essential or desired technical skills and experience in addition to salary, location and employment type.