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Accurate Job Descriptions and Effective Interviews

By March 18, 2024HR

During the hiring process, business owners and managers should pay attention to creating appropriate job descriptions that include a role’s primary tasks. Beyond merely the job title, it’s important to convey a clear understanding of the expectations of the role.  

In addition to screening candidates for their availability to conform to workplace hours and norms, employers should paint an accurate picture of what is expected of the candidate in terms of skills. 

Best Practices for Job Descriptions and Evaluating Candidates 

  • Don’t make assumptions that candidates will automatically know how to do a certain task, such as typing. If typing is a significant part of the job, make sure you spell it out in the job description. 
  • If a baseline skill is critical to the job, like data entry or business writing, consider requiring the candidate to complete tests and exercises that demonstrate that he or she can actually do the work. 
  • Keep this ‘proof of performance’ reasonable. Asking a potential new hire to demonstrate skills that aren’t really part of the job is excessive and unnecessary. For example, a marketing assistant could be asked to write a single blog or press release instead of creating an entire marketing plan. 
  • Don’t set candidates up for failure or lead them on. If you can already tell from someone’s resume that he or she won’t make the cut, it’s unfair to require their participation in a three-hour trial of their abilities. 

Because these types of exercises can be time consuming, you will want to consider whether compensation for candidates’ time is appropriate. One option is to offer a hiring bonus for those who complete the exercise.  

To improve hiring outcomes, an employer should focus on crafting job descriptions that accurately reflect the duties and responsibilities of the position, including fitness for duty requirements that will apply. Building flexibility into job descriptions can be beneficial because there may be times when an employee will need to step in and perform additional tasks when an employee leaves or is absent. 

If you need help crafting effective job descriptions, MarathonHR is here to help. 

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