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7 Tips for Creating a Job Spec in 2020

When you are recruiting for a position, you obviously want to attract the best candidates you can. Just as you would create your shortlist by carefully screening CVs, so good candidates are also picking the jobs they apply for based on a job ad’s quality. So, make sure you catch only the best by crafting an excellent and attractive job spec. Here are 7 job spec tips to help you.

1. Refine the Job Title

A job title can be a difficult thing to decide sometimes, and it’s not always as obvious as it seems. You may merge several roles into one, making it difficult to give it a name. If candidates read a weakly defined job title, they won’t even click through to read the rest of the job spec, let alone apply for it. So, make very, very sure that you refine the job title carefully. Also, try not to use gimmicky language like “Rockstar” or “Ninja”. These have become quite popular recently, but we wouldn’t advise it unless you are recruiting for a creative post such as copywriter.

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2. Write a Short, Attractive Overview

Start the spec off with an executive summary that includes all the key attributes of the job. This will entice candidates to read further and spur an application. Don’t reveal all of course; just create a few short sentences explaining how the role fits into the company as a whole, what kind of contribution the candidate would make and the value that he/she would get from it. Make the summary an invitation with phrases such as “Come and contribute to…” or “Join a great team…”

3. Focus on Growth, Development & Contribution, Not Tasks & Obligations

When listing the requirements of the job, let the candidate know how they can expect to grow and develop in the position, as they generate their deliverables. Do not focus on the deliverables themselves and do not draw up a sterile list of tasks to be carried out. Remember that, when you read a candidate’s CV, you are looking for signs of growth, development and achievement, not a simple list of responsibilities. The same goes for your job spec.

4. Describe & Promote the Culture of Your Workplace

Be sure to promote your workplace culture. Explain to candidates why they would want to work at your company. You don’t need to go into too much detail, just a paragraph that sums up the history of the company, the exciting work it does and the perks that the candidate can look forward to.

5. Pay Attention to Details

You know how you are likely to throw away a CV that is not spell-checked or is full of bad grammar? Well, a candidate will have the same doubts when reading a badly constructed job spec. They may wonder what kind of company they can expect to be working for if the HR department can’t even be bothered to proofread their job specs. Don’t let this be your first impression. Write and rewrite that spec, spell-check it, run it through Grammarly, have someone proofread it, then check it again.

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We no longer need to confine our job specs to written documents. Why not use other media to make yourself stand out. Create a simple video that sums up the job in words and pics, or one that includes a short statement from your CEO or department head? Candidates are sure to respond to that.

7. Create a Sense of Urgency

Even if you have time to spare when recruiting for a post, rather set a deadline and create a sense of urgency, to ensure that good candidates get their applications in timeously. This also creates a sense that this is a high-quality job that will be very much in demand and that the candidate needs to apply quickly to be among the lucky ones considered for the post.

If you need further help creating your job spec, contact Tower Group. We are long-established experts in all areas of HR and can easily help you refine your recruiting process and get the best talent into your company.

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