How to Avoid Ineffective Job Descriptions Once and For All

By Sara Pollock

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Even as professionals in the space, hiring and recruiting continues to challenge us. In fact, 95% of recruiters believe recruiting will continue to become more competitive in the future. With this knowledge, job descriptions are one of the most basic and necessary tools in every recruiter's toolbox. Learn how to create descriptions that evolve with the changing climate, what to include and how to format them for the best approach to your desired audience. 

Utilize Your Internal Job Pool
Despite the many benefits of hiring from the inside, internal candidates aren’t always used. That’s not always on purpose though. Often, employees aren’t aware of open positions within their organization, or they may be concerned about the value their referral may bring.

Making an effort to recruit to your internal talent pool could offer large benefits. For one, it saves on hiring costs and results in lower job failure. Remember, these employees already understand your culture and feel comfortable working within the business, which could very well be why between 40% and 60% of external hires aren’t successful, compared to only 25% of internal hires. Create an internal job board, use your company intranet or send out email blasts to alert employees of new openings. You’ll also enjoy higher employee morale as companies that implemented an internal career program saw employee career satisfaction increase 20%. You may even garner referrals from employees.

Don’t Focus Too Much on Work Experience
A whopping 97% of companies looking to hire require “x” number of years experience in the same or a similar role. Just because everybody’s doing it doesn’t mean you should too. Unfortunately, those numbers deter many candidates from applying for fear they wouldn’t be considered anyway. Instead, focus more on candidate skills.

Millennials are likely to have less job experience, but are also 51% more likely to have a college degree. With too much focus on years of experience, recruiters are missing out on excellent candidates. They may have less experience, but they still have all the right skills and the potential to grow with your company. There’s no need for unlearning or re-teaching over old methods: the less experienced candidate is ready to be molded into the perfect fit for your business.

Obviously, you want your candidate signing up for a particular and clearly-defined position, but that shouldn’t be the only thing covered in your job description. Placing a higher emphasis on potential career paths shows candidates the interest your organization has in developing employees. The emphasis will ensure they understand your values, but also see the connection of their own. The tone of your description should also reflect the company culture.

A thought-out career path on your part shows the candidate you want them for the long haul and are invested in their future. The result is higher employee loyalty as 99% of job seekers said they would feel more loyal to an employer who invests in their training.

Try Out Video Job Descriptions
The average job prospect spends only 50 seconds on a job posting before moving on. That’s not much time to showcase your company culture, describe the job and cover career path. One time-saver to look into is a video job description that explores “a day in the life” view of the position.
A hiring manager or collaborative team can quickly describe the open position and usual day-to-day tasks, while allowing candidates to familiarize themselves with the actual facility and team. The video provides an opportunity to project your visual brand and creates excitement around the workplace and position.

All of this contributes to a more specific and engaged talent pool. Follow these tips and you will have fewer candidates to sift through, while saving time, money and energy. As the competition for talent gets tougher, you can’t afford to be left floundering with outdated practices. Download our talent acquisition process guide and see how you can start hiring better.

If you’re finding you still have too much great talent to sift through, consider whether an applicant tracking system might be right for you.

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