Finding the right person for the job is a challenge. You only need to try and fill one open position to find that out! It’s a process that is a both a bit of an art and a science. It’s hard to attract people with the skills you really need, interview effectively, impress the best candidates appropriately, make a competitive offer, etc. – and things can get bogged down or go awry at any stage. You want to do everything you can to ensure you get it all right so you can maximize your odds of hiring a really great employee.
Start with the job description. It’s one of the first things that will impact a potential candidate. It’s how you get them in and it’s the first way they begin to learn about your firm. There’s an art to writing a good one but following a few basic best practices in this area can really help, including:
- Be clear, clean and concise in your writing, and try to avoid too much jargon and boilerplate language. The job description is one way that a candidate begins to experience the culture and personality of your company, so don’t turn people off with stilted writing.
- Be reasonable in listing minimum or “must have” skills so that you don’t needlessly weed out talented individuals with the capacity to learn.
- Convey excitement. Give the person a chance to see how their work would make a difference, be interesting, and rewarding for them in ways beyond salary and benefits. These are important to people, especially top performers who have their choice of offers.