PREVIEW: Power of Proactive Recruiting By: Henry Glickel- Chapter 1: Job Description

When you are recruiting for your company take the opportunity to make improvements. Commitment to improvement should be a core value of your company anyway. you want to be able to be decisive toward that end  to be able to make choices based on a function of values. The job description is the ideal starting point and is too often taken too lightly.

In the simplest sense  a job description is the official written ac- count of the position to be filled. It describes your needs. It supplies the basics of what the candidate can expect from your company.

In addition to being used to advertise the vacant position the job description may also be used to determine compensation and as a basis for performance reviews.

The job description is also the tool you’ll use to attract interest in the position. If it’s not accurate and clear you are not likely to gen- erate suitable interest. Consider the job description a communica- tions tool and take the time to prepare and use it effectively.

Whether you need to fill an existing position or you are creating a new one  the job description can help streamline the candidate identification process and will determine where you go from there. First and foremost, make sure you understand your own needs!

Take some time to evaluate the position and determine whether it should be tweaked to meet any changing needs of the company.  Look at what worked when the position was last filled  as well as what didn’t work. What did you appreciate about the last employee? What did you wish had been different? Then conduct a job analysis to look at the tasks  sequence of tasks and qualifiers necessary to perform the job.

Many companies are confronted with the challenge of finding employees that demonstrate salesmanship. A company can have a strong product or service, so salesmanship may be less obvious.  In a bad economy it can be difficult to gauge whether there is a problem with the product or service or whether the problem lies with salesmanship. During a bad economy it’s even more important to be certain you’re hiring people with strong salesmanship skills.   You’ll need a variety of qualifiers to determine this and you’ll want to establish these qualifiers from the outset in your job description.

 The ideal job description should clearly and concisely communicate your precise needs: what the job entails  responsibilities reporting structure  expectations and qualifications.

1.   Determine 5-10 key responsibilities

2.   Delineate expected goals/objectives

3.   Outline behavioral characteristics

4.   Define reporting structure

5.   Indicate 3-5 qualifications

6.   Determine basic requirements  skills and credentials


•    Title of the position

•    Department

•    Overall responsibilities

•    Key areas of responsibility

•    Term of employment

•    Qualifications  including skills and experience required

Additional considerations:

•   Travel requirements

•   Benefits

•   Bonuses

Some caution is required when addressing educational and experience requirements to avoid inadvertent discrimination. Be sure the educational requirements stated are a true necessity for the job. If the job may be accomplished by someone with equivalent experience but not necessarily a specific credential  the job description may need to be re-examined. In addition to avoid age discrimination  it may be best to list minimum years of experience required without suggesting an upper limit.

Job descriptions can have some legal implications  as they provide a basis for job evaluation  wage and salary comparison and equitable wage and salary structure (under the Equal Pay Act). They may be used to help determine a position’s exempt or non-exempt status under the Fair Labor Standards Act, and to provide a basis from which to determine whether an applicant with a disability is qualified for the job  as well as what accommodation is required to perform the essential functions of the job under the Americans with Disabilities Act.