Question: What should I say in my job description to attract people?

Answer: First answer a few questions.

  1. Will this job description be used primarily for internal reference or to advertise the job to candidates?

  2. How much liability mitigation are we trying to do vs attraction of quality candidates?

  3. What do we want this description to say about the company?

  4. How narrowly do we want to define the role? How do we build in flexibility for good candidates who are not identical matches to the description?

  5. What is our hiring emphasis on skills vs attitude?

Companies are ultimately reflections of their owners. Consider what it is about your core values which influence your culture which influences your operations which influences the daily workflow, which influences how people are treated, and consequently, how they feel about working there. People want to be proud of their work and company. What will your firm contribute to their life?

People quit their managers, not jobs. So, logically, people are retained by their managers.

Quality of management is THE problem to solve in business and communicating the quality of your management to candidates starts in the job description.

The two pitfalls most job descriptions fall into is (1) an exhaustive list of abstract skills and (2) a list of non relational “perk” benefits. These are unimaginative and mostly unhelpful since they do not deal with how the job will improve someone’s life. Not to mention most jobs have fairly consistent ability requirements and anyone skilled in that arena will know if they are qualified. The rest can easily be screened out.

Think about who you are as an owner and leader and what kind of meaning that has for employees. Once you get all these things worked out in your work worldview it will be very easy to explain why someone should come work for you. Your vision for your contribution to their life will be clear and attractive.

About the author

TJ Kastning is the principal of Ambassador Search Group, a boutique recruiting agency passionate about finding excellent professionals for amazing construction companies.

Send us your recruiting and hiring questions for our ‘This Week’s Questions’ series. We appreciate the opportunity to contemplate tricky issues.

TJ can be reached at tj@ambassadorgroup.com.

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What should I say in my job description to attract people?

Companies are ultimately reflections of their owners. You should consider what it is about your core values which influence your culture which influences your operations which influences the daily workflow, which influences how people are treated, and consequently, how they feel about working there. People want to be proud of their work and company.

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