Finding the right talent for your organization is almost as difficult as finding a needle in a haystack. And one of the most crucial aspects of talent search is drafting an accurate job description. Every recruiter needs to understand how to write a job description. A well-written description gets the right kind of candidates interested in the job, gets suitable applications, and helps hire the right people while a shoddy job description can cost you, well-suited candidates.
Here are the top nine mistakes recruiters make when writing job descriptions –
1. Recycling an Old Job Description
Roles and responsibilities evolve in an organization with time. Reusing the same job description as five years ago – may give the wrong impression to applicants. Re-visit the content of the description and update it as needed before sending it out.
2. Job Titles
Keep the job title as simple and specific as possible. Using jargon such as “ninja” or “super-pro” may sound cool, but it says nothing about your expectations from the person who works in that position. Simple job titles should help candidates easily find and recognize the role you are recruiting for.
3. Writing a Generic Description
Generic descriptions may be short, but they don’t delve into the specifics of a role and will never get a potential candidate excited about the opening. Use specific technical terms to describe the objective of the team you’re hiring for. This will help the candidate with the right experience to relate to the work you expect them to do and get them interested.
4. Leaving Out Important Information
Are you giving the candidates the right information? Make sure you discuss with the management to understand their expectations from the recruit and include this information in the description. It is also a good idea to talk to current employees in the same or similar position to understand what to include and what not to include in the job description.
5. A Long List of Required Skills / Qualifications
A long list of required skills or qualifications may deter potential candidates from applying for the position. Keep a realistic list of expectations that are essential to the job you are recruiting for. This is a job description best practice.
6. Not prioritizing the Requirements/Expectations
Sometimes it is easy for recruiters to confuse desired skills or qualifications with required skills. Prioritize the essential skills that are needed for the job and highlight them. If you have any additional requirements that are good to have but not necessary for the candidate – make sure you list them as desired.
7. Gender Biased Job Description
Scan through your finished job description and check if it sounds too oriented towards one gender. Make sure that the text sounds neutral and does not use any words that may discourage men, women, or other genders from applying. This is not only essential for finding the right talent but also for promoting your company’s image of diversity.
8. Forgetting Keywords and SEO
Most candidates begin their job search online and search engines play an important role in bridging the recruiter-candidate gap. Use the right keywords in your description to make your website or job posting appear high in the search results. Experiment with different SEO strategies to boost your rankings.
9. Spelling and Grammatical Errors
Your job description represents your organization. A sloppy formatting, spelling, or grammar errors portrays a negative image for your organization. Use a spell-check tool, and check for grammatical errors thoroughly before sending the description out into the market.
When a candidate reads a well-written description of a job, with accurate information and reflecting a personality – it creates an aspiration for the job. Avoid the above job description pitfalls and you’re sure to create job descriptions that pique the right candidate’s interest.