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How to Write a Job Description: Guide and Universal Template

6 min read | Jan 26, 2023
 Marta Gongos- Ad Culture By Marta Gongos

Hiring is a time-bound process. You wouldn’t want to waste time browsing through job applications that don’t match your needs for a certain position. You want to be able to attract the right candidates from the start, but you’ll have to be strategic in doing so—and it all starts with having the right job description template.

If you have positions to fill but your current job posting isn’t gaining any traction, or you’re in the midst of recruiting for a role but aren’t sure where to start, follow the guide below to create a winning job description.

Download Our FREE Job Description Template

How a Job Description Can Attract Quality Applicants

Job descriptions should be a direct reflection of your company’s values, mission, and culture. It is, like many sales pitches, a way to brand your organization, only this time, as an employer. Why does that matter?

Great candidates care about the nature of their jobs and see their employers as an extension of their careers. What you represent and what your existing employees say about you can either help attract or repel great talent.

Good employer branding also helps create a healthy company culture and instills loyalty, so don’t miss out on any opportunity to positively engage current and potential hires. Your employees are, after all, your original brand ambassadors.

But don’t forget that hiring is about finding the right person for the job, so make sure you communicate the necessary information through your job description. You wouldn’t want to keep interviewing candidates who might turn down your offer because you failed to disclose important job details.

Follow these simple steps to create a job description template that attracts quality applicants. Alternatively, you can download this free template created by the recruitment team at Ad Culture.

 a hiring manager conducting a group interview

What to Include in Your Job Description

A good job description should make the right candidate feel like they’ve found the perfect job for them. You can do this by including enough information to keep the applicant interested and informed, but not too long for them to skip to the next job ad.

Generally, a good rule of thumb is to:

  • Keep it between 300 and 600 words;
  • Use a bulleted list that allows the applicant to quickly check if they qualify; and
  • Be clear about what’s necessary and what’s optional.

Part 1: Job Title

The job title should accurately match the job description.

Candidates who are looking online for jobs likely have alerts set up for specific keywords that align with previous roles and positions they have experience or interest in. Make sure you’re keeping the job title relevant and accurate.

Don’t make the mistake of calling a sales role a marketing position and don’t try to trick an applicant by labelling the role coordinator when the job description clearly indicates it is a managerial position. Being upfront about the seniority and position is integral in getting quality candidates to apply.

Part 2: Company Background

Just like you’d want to know about your applicant’s employment history, they want to know you as a company and as an employer.

Use this section to give a brief overview of your business and what it is like to work at your company—your principles, your company culture, and why your employees choose to stay.

Part 3: Purpose of the Role

Indicating the purpose of the role gives applicants a better understanding of what’s expected and how it relates to their career goals.

Some applicants want to be more involved in decision-making, while others prefer to be supervised and mentored.

It’s important that you’re clear about contribution expectations and how they are essential to the team or the business. This will inform them of what it takes to work with you while helping filter out candidates who are at a different stage in their careers. They may not be the right candidate now, but they could very well be in the future.

A recruiter interviewing a candidate

Part 4: Duties and Responsibilities

This section should be a detailed list of all the duties expected from the role.

If possible, include the weighted percentage of each facet involved in the day-to-day of the job. For example, a content manager might spend 50% of their time reviewing and editing written content, 20% writing, another 20% strategizing and planning, and the last 10% on email marketing campaigns.

This rough overview will help potential candidates visualize themselves in the role.

Part 5: Essential and/or Preferred Qualifications

The essential qualifications refer to the skills, experience, certifications, and other non-negotiable requirements. It also serves to include additional skills or experience that is preferred, but not necessary.

Part 6: Salary and Benefits

Including the salary and benefits helps increase interest. Just like how companies have preferences, so do applicants. Being transparent ensures that you don’t lose qualified candidates along the way just because they weren’t initially aware of these details.

Part 7: Contact Information (Optional)

Leaving your contact information is optional, but it helps promote trust and confidence. You want applicants to be comfortable leaving their personal information with you, and sharing your contact details helps them feel that they can connect with you anytime regarding the management of their personal data.

Download Our FREE Job Description Template

Professionally Written Job Descriptions by Expert Recruiters

Finding the right candidate is easier when you have an expert recruiter handling the hiring process from start to finish.

Ad Culture is a recruitment agency based in Toronto, Ontario that specializes in marketing, sales, and advertising for a wide range of industries. Our own marketing experts don’t only know how to write an effective job description, but they know exactly what you need to build and maintain your marketing team. Our high retention rate and satisfied clients are proof that we are quite the pros in finding marketing unicorns.

So if you’re hiring, call us now or leave a message—we’ve got it covered.

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