The Death of the Mundane Job Description

Emily Kocoloski   January 12, 2017  

Crafting an effective job description can be challenging, but just like eating your vegetables, it must be done to grow your client’s company big and strong. This description may be a candidate’s first impression of the organization, so you don’t want to blow it. Unfortunately, many companies use this gateway as a professional checklist, prompting applicants to question if they meet the qualifications or embody enough of the listed ambiguous personality traits to make the cut.

Sure, it’s important to reach the right pool of potential new hires for the role, but what if the right ones are turned off by your approach? This is exactly what a study from The Journal of Business and Psychology found. Lead by David Jones, a professor from the University of Vermont, the study points out what a few tweaks in wording and tone of a job advertisement can do for its reception. Here is how you can create an up-to-date description that will lead to better new hires and greater retention rates.

Set Yourself Apart

Instead of jumping right in and drilling candidates for a list of degrees or special skills, shift some of the focus to the company. Start the post with a few sentences about the open spot, and then highlight the culture and advantages that the company has to offer. This takes some of the pressure off the applicant and sells them on your brand.

Be Authentic

Only use hiring friendly phrases in your job posting if the organization and its employees can back them up. With so many two-way review channels available to the public, there is really no room for fibbing. A few negative posts about experiences with false promises can spook quality candidates. Write the job post the same way you would speak to the peers that you are hiring for to avoid misrepresentation. Be professional, but don’t be afraid to show the organization’s true colors.

Be Mindful of the Mobile Scanner

Mobile phones have become a lifeline to the outside world, including job posting sites. Candidates can easily scroll, search, and submit using only their thumbs. Don’t get passed by because your posting isn’t “user friendly.” Choose a catchy, informative title and take the time to format for a neat flow. Be open to non-traditional apps when recruiting. Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook are great places to leave a job posting, but don’t write off the less common texting and tinder style apps for job searching.

The rules are changing with the popular sub generations submerging deeper into the professional world, and everyone is scrambling to stand out to applicants. Don’t be afraid of creativity when tapping into applicant pools, and be mindful that your job description can make or break you.