The job description is the most important place to start when recruiting for an employee and, if it's well written, it can indeed mean that you recruit the right candidate. By being precise when describing the job’s requirements, you will avoid making mistakes. To improve this process even more, here are a few guidelines:
By putting the description down on paper, you may discover that a certain position does not actually need to be filled by someone on a permanent basis. Is it possible to share the tasks amongst employees already working at the company? If you have decided that you really do need someone for the job, identify the essential tasks and responsibilities.
One of the most frequent missteps that managers make is simply drawing up a shopping list of tasks without actually looking at the position in detail. To avoid this, ask yourself some questions:
Based on your answers to the above questions, determine the criteria for the job – the mixture of functional qualifications, skills and character traits that the candidate must have to successfully fulfil the position. Try not to confuse qualifications, skills and personal characteristics with one another, because there are subtle differences to each:
The employment criteria are especially important if there are several candidates for the position. These will allow you to remove a large number of ‘unsuitable’ candidates from the list.
You can now start to write the job description. Don’t forget that the job description is not merely used to attract the best candidate, but also to evaluate other candidates for the job. In general, the job description should be practical, functional and clear. It should include:
The salary is an important part of the job description and you should be prepared to establish a salary on the basis of the employee’s education and experience, along with the general salary level within your branch, organisation, department or area. In any case, there is a variety of sources you can use to assist you, such as salary guides, recruitment firms and the Internet.
Finally, don’t be under the impression that the position needs to be filled quickly. Take more time to determine a clear job description and to find a candidate that fits that description. This is a much better approach than finding yourself with a candidate who does not fit your requirements.