A job description document is an important tool that can help human resources when they are recruiting potential employees. This type of document lists all the duties and responsibilities of a particular role within a company, so HR can use it to identify viable candidates.
Additionally, job descriptions are helpful for letting applicants know what a particular job entails and whether or not they are qualified for it. So read on to view some great examples of job description templates that you can modify for your own use.
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Writing a concise job description
A job description is a critical document for every type of position. A well-written one performs a number of important functions, namely:
- It describes the skills and competencies that are required in order to perform the work of a particular position
- It defines where the position fits within the overall hierarchy of a company
- It is a valuable tool that’s used for one’s performance management
So now that you know the key functions, here are the step that should help you create a concise and well-written job description.
The first vital element of any job description is the job title. A good job title will have the following qualities:
- It accurately reflects the nature of the job, as well as the duties that have to be performed
- It reflects its ranking order compared to the other jobs within the company
- It does not exaggerate the importance of the role
- It should be free from any form of gender or age implications
- It should be generic enough that it can be compared to similar jobs in the industry in terms of both pay and conditions
- It is self-explanatory for recruitment purposes
If you are going to create a good job title, then a good example would be “Parking Enforcer”. Immediately, you will be able to gain a sense of what is being enforced and what the job is going to make you do. It is important to remember that you need a title that is simple enough to give applicants an immediate idea of the skills and responsibilities required by the position.
Duties and responsibilities
The job description should contain a list of the duties and responsibilities associated with the role, as well as the amount of time it will take to complete each task.
The amount of time it takes for every task should be represented by percentages (i.e. cleaning 30%, cooking 20%, etc.). Make sure that each entry is only two to three sentences in length. It should also be outcome-based—containing an action, an object, and a purpose. The list of responsibilities and duties will vary in length, but remember that it should be as short as you can possibly make it. So write down at least 15 tasks, or possibly even less.
Roles in smaller companies may have more tasks associated with them, mainly because of their “all-around” nature. However, you still have to follow the 15 or below rule. Otherwise, the document may end up looking more like an operations manual than a job description.
Skills and competencies
Remember that the skills and competencies required for a job have to be listed separately as both of them are two entirely different things. Skills are defined as the activities that a candidate can perform based on the things that he or she has learned or mastered in the past, or from the qualifications that he or she has obtained. Competencies are the traits or attributes you should expect the candidate to display if he or she were to take up the role. An example of a skill is the ability to manage employee training. This is the kind of skill that can only be acquired through both study and practice.
An example of a competency, on the other hand, is strong communication, which is a characteristic that can be displayed by any person that has it. The modern trend today when it comes to creating job descriptions means extra weight is given to any kind of behavior qualities such as leadership, teamwork, flexibility, communication strategy, and initiative.
It is important to include reporting lines and working relationships within your job description.
You need to clarify the responsibility lines of the position so that the candidates will know who they will be reporting to and who will be reporting to them should they get the position. This is important because it will give the candidate an idea of the hierarchical structure of the company as well as where his or her position fits in the organizational chart.
You also need to define the role’s working relationships. List the different people from different departments that the employee will be working with. It’s important for you to describe the size of the department and the extent of the required interaction so the employee will be better-informed.
Instead of citing a specific figure for a certain role, work out a salary range to include in the job description that is competitive with similar positions in other organizations and allows for variations in education and experience. Then make sure that this salary range is updated from time to time in line with changing pay scales in the industry.
Featured below are more job description samples.
Program Support Drafter Job Description
Senior Plumber Job Description
Multi-skilled Plumber Job Description
Assistant Plumber Job Description
Master Plumber Job Description
Tips for writing an effective job description
If you are hiring someone for your company, then the first thing that you have to do is to set some parameters for who is qualified for the position. Come up with criteria so that you can make an informed decision on who you want to hire.
Here are some writing tips that will help you make a winning job description that will ensure that the duties and the responsibilities are clear enough for anyone to understand:
Choose a clear, concise title for the position
This has been mentioned before, but it’s best to keep in mind that a good job title will ensure that an applicant gets an idea of what the position is about as soon as he or she reads it.
Provide a clear image for the position
You should be able to give potential hires enough information about your company, your team, and the types of projects they will be working on. If your job description fails to do this, then it is going to be so much harder for you to find those people who are going to be a good fit for your team. Show potential hires you value their time by giving them the information they need to evaluate the project opportunity by being open about what you and your company have to offer them.
Describe the working environment in your company
Is the employee going to have to work with a lot of people? Is the location cold or warm? Will the employee have to operate heavy equipment to transport cargo? These details need to be in the job description so the applicant will know what to expect out of the job. This will also help them decide if the job is a good match for them. You do not want a person who will not enjoy working for your company since you could likely end up hearing numerous employee complaints.
Spell out the skills that matter most to you
dir=”ltr”>You have to make sure that you put in the top three or four skills that you want in a candidate. This does not guarantee that you will get the perfect applicant right away, but it will help narrow the field to only the most qualified candidates.
Include any educational requirements
Any educational requirements that you wish to include in your job description need to be considered very carefully. You want to make sure the level of education you specify in your job description is a “must-have” for the job and not something that can be used as an advantage for a candidate to have over others. You need to make it clear that the education factor is mandatory and not optional. However, if you are willing to accept a candidate who has a certain level of education over someone who has years of practical experience for the position, then you have to state this in the job description.
Outline the day-to-day duties of the position
You have to accurately describe the day-to-day duties of the position as it exists today. This helps to further filter your list of interested applicants.
Focus on the essentials only
When you are writing a job description, focus only on the role’s duties and responsibilities rather than the personal characteristics of the person that you want to hire. Also, make sure that your job description is as gender-neutral as possible. You may consider getting an advice note from your legal staff when it comes to wording your job description to confirm that it does not open you up to accusations of possible hiring discrimination.
Include compensation information
If you pay a person right, then expect that person to stay with you for a long time. Be sure to do your market research and see how other companies pay an employee with the same position that you are trying to fill. If you are creating a new position, go online or talk to other business owners who employ people in similar capacities so that you will have an idea of how much the industry-standard compensation is for the position.
Take your time
Take all the time you need when writing a job description. Be meticulous as if you are doing an employee report. You do not want to rush this task as a well-written job description can help you hire the best candidate.
If you would like to learn more about job descriptions in Word and other formats, be sure to read our other helpful articles.