WRITING JOB DESCRIPTIONS THAT WORK Though admittedly not exciting to write, job descriptions are important. The right ones increase the odds of attracting quality talent that fit both the position and the company well. Fortunately, there are some simple ways to improve the accuracy of job descriptions and attract quality applicants whether you are doing so through tested and true mediums such as newspaper ads or collecting digital resumes. Whenever possible, get input from someone who is currently doing the job well. Ask them what responsibilities the job truly entails and what skills and personality attributes are required to be good at it. This helps prevent disconnects that cause the job advertised by a human resource manager to require slightly different skills and abilities than those actually expected on the job. It also reduces turnover and bad hires. Focus on the expected outcomes the company will measure when evaluating job performance and less on creating a list of daily tasks or desired attributes. Sometimes it is necessary to include a list of required skills and abilities in a job description. Choose your words carefully when doing so. Some adjectives have specific connotations that may turn away potentially good job candidates. Women, for example, often ignore help wanted ads that ask for traits associated with male stereotypes, such as “assertiveness”. While job descriptions should include necessary traits, a long list of them can be overwhelming to job seekers. The best descriptions are hybrids that explain the job responsibilities, skill requirements and characteristics that make someone a good fit for the job. Try to incorporate your brand image and company culture into the job description as well. Candidates looking for a job also want a company culture that fits them. Although this is a lot of information to incorporate, try to do so as briefly as possible. Today’s job seeker has access to many job descriptions and is looking for jobs they can learn about and apply for quickly. Many people now access information from their mobile devices, so make sure to optimize your job descriptions for these devices.