Crafting Irresistible Job Descriptions and
Bring in the Right People!
The current job market is highly competitive, and the need for companies to stand out and attract the best talent in their industry has never been higher. With new generations entering the workforce, and new and higher expectations for ROI for their hard work and commitment, the perks and benefits need to be unique and interesting, demonstrating the value of work/life balance just to get that talent to hit the apply button and consider a company.
The first thing a prospective hire will see after their Google search gives them an overview of employee and client feedback, and details on the products and services a company provides, is the job description. The importance of crafting clear, enticing job descriptions that highlight the main tasks and responsibilities, and detail on the ROI for the potential applicant is extremely high. Those companies taking seriously the need to avoid boilerplate job descriptions and create a compelling story about a job, their company, its culture, and how working there will be the best decision the candidate can make in their career, greatly increase their chances of bringing in a pool of solid candidates from which to choose. Here is a shortlist of the most important items to be sure that your job descriptions include to catch the eye and draw in that top talent.
- Be Accurate and Transparent. If your job description does not align with what a candidate will hear during the interview, expect to lose out on that talent. Outlining the specific responsibilities, the scope of the work and how it fits into the company’s mission, main tasks that will need to be completed week to week, and the key objectives for the role. Be sure to also include the jargon and verbiage typically used within your industry as it will either resonate with a prospective hire or let them know this opportunity may not be the best fit for them. Avoid generalized and ambiguous language and statements that may cause confusion, or suggest that the role may as yet be fully defined, as it will turn off the person who may believe the company is disorganized and thus less attractive to them.
Perks & Benefits:
- Every employee in every generation will be very interested in all perks and benefits that go with their employment at a company. It is no longer sufficient to include things like two weeks’ vacation, a couple of personal days, health benefits, Employee Assistance Programs, etc. All companies are offering those same standard items. Companies need to rethink the benefits they offer if they intend to bring in Top Talent. Consider what is feasible in terms of Flexibility, as increasingly people are looking to be able to take more personal time away, create work/life balance, including remote or hybrid options, flexible hours, and most companies can make these benefits work, and each is worth implementing to attract the people it wants. Also, celebrate programs and the company mission for diversity and inclusion, wellness programs, skill-building, and career development that make clear a path for candidates to advance in the company, and your track record for promoting from within before going external. Each benefit and perk a company can include in its job description increases the chances of landing the people that can build Brand Superiority and drive business success.
- Just about every employee satisfaction survey over the last decade or more, we hear over and over again how ‘Money is not among the top reasons people come to or leave a company’. Let’s not kid ourselves, Money Matters! It is more likely that companies are doing their due diligence on what the competitive wages are for specific jobs and making sure they are not lagging behind their competitors. It absolutely will be a deal-breaker for candidates who are looking at several of the top companies where they can apply their skills. Don’t underestimate the importance of showing, not only the starting wage and expected first-year salary but show the trajectory of potential income for your employees. Do you have a pay scale, one that includes bonuses and other incentives? Most candidates with at least a few years of experience have already dealt with the ambiguity that many companies purposely build within their compensation discussions. That can be a huge turn-off as people consider where to go next, feeling that if there is no clarity on what the full compensation will, and can, be ‘what else is not being made clear’. Put it out there proudly to highlight how well-compensated your employees are, as well as a clear demonstration of a culture of transparency.
- The first there areas covered are critically important: Work Responsibilities, Perks & Benefits, and Compensation. However, each has fully become ‘expectations’ as much as they are differentiators for companies looking to attract top talent. The upside of these areas continuing to be among the top considerations for people looking for the next stop on their career journey is that it helps companies not feel like they need to fully reinvent the wheel when it comes to attracting the right people. Many companies have wisely worked on those areas to bolster and evolve their approach to each of them. As previously stated, adding factors like Transparency, Clarity of Expectations, and adopting the newer, employee-friendly benefits that more and more people are finding far more enticing than those of yesteryear. Culture is a newer point of attraction for people, increasingly something that people want to know about as clearly as possible, quickly becoming a ‘need’ over that ‘nice to have’ category, and while many companies are responding, some are slower to act, which comes at a cost.
- From your talent acquisition teams, recruiters, and HR staff, each of whom has responsibility for hiring and retaining good talent, it is critically important to make clear, using examples as much as possible, what the company’s culture is. Is yours one that celebrates is people through Recognition and Reward? Is it a culture of development and continuous learning? Do you promote from within? Do you have a collaborative culture, one in which every voice matters and where you can show how some of your best ideas, initiatives, and even hire boost product and service offerings have come from different levels and work areas of your business? Is your culture clearly focused on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and can you prove that to a prospective hire? Considering your company’s mission, what can you share that makes clear how much your culture exemplifies that mission? What unique initiatives have you created and executed on that provide your people with a sense of purpose and doing something meaningful and good for people and the communities you serve? Authenticity and sharing of examples on every aspect of the culture you have created is critically important. Much like building trust, if you cannot show how your company and people live your culture and practice what you are preaching, it will cost you a lot of ‘points’ on the consideration scale for candidates, and very likely cost you many good people who may have been thrilled with the other offers but have too many concerns about being the cultural fit they are looking for.
To summarize, crafting Clear, Enticing, and Accurate job descriptions is the first step to having people, the right people, even read the description in its entirety, and then take that next step to dig more deeply into the company, and then take it to the next step and apply for your open role. The language you use, the detail you provide, and the engagement you can demonstrate within those couple of paragraphs are well worth the time and effort it takes to do so. When you think about ‘First Impressions’ in every aspect of life and work, this is one that is a difference maker for a business. Many people DO judge the book by its cover. They walk past the stores and restaurants that have not invested in making the outside as appealing as they likely have on the inside. It’s unfortunate that some businesses don’t realize the importance of that eye-catching cover, and storefront, as it IS the first decision point for those whom your job posting or networking efforts have pulled in to take their initial look at you and what you’ve got. Prioritize this area, and as you think about the many steps between the first impression and the last, being the person accepting your offer, don’t leave it to chance. Make it Great, and you will be on your way to bringing in Top Talent and Great People.