Finding the right person takes the right description of the job. A candidate who doesn’t apply because you’re honest about the fast pace or vacation blackout period over the holidays is not a candidate who was right for the job to begin with.
Start off with a few sentences about why this is a great job. It should help people imagine themselves working in your environment and growing with your company.
- Why is the job open? If it’s due to a promotion, landing a big new client or another positive reason, definitely say so.
- Where can the job take them? Candidates are attracted to career paths, not just jobs. Will you train this person in a valuable new skill? Will they get to work for a great boss who has mentored others to success? Will they be on a team with great achievements? Will they be working on an interesting or important project? Will they have the opportunity to make buckets of cash?
- What’s the lifestyle? People have concerns with childcare, pets, transportation, family and community obligations, sports and hobbies, etc… Let them know what their days will be like. How many hours will they need to work? Can they telecommute? Will travel be required? What about late nights and weekends? Will they be expected to take work home at night or respond to emails after hours? Is your office pet friendly? Jeans and hoodies or suits and heels? Are no visible tattoos and piercings allowed or does half your staff look like the Suicide Girls? Does your company have a religious environment?
- What’s the Team Style? People want to know who they’ll be spending half their waking hours around. List the common attributes of the top performers on your team. Are you early birds or Draculas? Do you plan ahead or procrastinate? Do you have a bowling team, all love ‘90s Scandinavian black metal, or share some other common interest? Are you a boisterous and jovial bunch or quiet and reserved?
Here’s a great example from Etna Interactive’s post for a Web Developer in San Luis Obispo:
You should know that we're a team of over-achievers, life-long learners and perfectionists. We are looking for someone who is up to the real challenge of the complexity and intensity of work at Etna Interactive and we have a special interest in finding someone with exceptional collaboration and communication skills. While a well-developed skill set and innate intelligence will get you in the door, a warm personality and the ability to fit with our team are essential. This role will provide you with the training and opportunity to learn and develop new skills in a comfortable, casual work environment.
To find a candidate who actually wants to do the job at hand, you have to describe the job accurately. While you should absolutely highlight the more interesting and exciting aspects of the job, downright embellishment is counterproductive because it encourages candidates who won’t be happy in the job.
If a position is 75% data entry, say so. You may find it tedious, but the right candidate finds it a gateway to a zen-like calm. Will your new receptionist be expected to make the office coffee and clean up the kitchen? You’d better make sure they’re ok with that.
Follow your introduction with a few bullet points describing day to day responsibilities. Think in terms of specific, discrete tasks that this person will do in their job. Avoid using internal company lingo.
Here’s an example from a post for a Senior QA Automation Engineer at Eze Software Group in Alpharetta, GA:
- Help create and maintain an automated test framework for product features and enhancements.
- Train others to automate manual test cases using the automation framework.
- Assist in evaluating existing applications with regard to making them testable through automation.
- Participate in continuous improvement of testing process and procedures by analyzing reported bugs and then assessing test coverage and project execution around these areas.
- Facilitate and participate in requirements gathering with stakeholders, product team members, development team members, and QA team. You will make sure that we write code that is testable via automation.
- Design test strategies and plans based upon functional and design specifications.
- Evaluate quality risk for product changes and propose test strategy to address risks.
- Track and reports test results in formal fashion through planned daily activities and reporting of project quality status.