Job descriptions are easy to critique and difficult to write. 


What you want to do is explain the role, the requirements, and the culture. However, it can easily become muddled, confusing and can easily deter potential candidates.

That’s why it’s essential to review your job description process, whether it is a template or if you’re just going off the cuff – it’s time to evaluate and consider whether your descriptions are easy to understand or downright confusing. While there’s certainly no ‘right way’ to write a job description, there are best practices that can help you attract the talent you want. 


1. Keep The Role Title Accurate

One of the biggest offenders I see in job advertisements is job position names that do not match what the role entails. This will severely impact your hiring process.

Having a mismatched title will do the following:

– Attract unsuitable candidates

– Cause confusion for jobseekers

– Make the role difficult to find because the usual words used to describe the role won’t be there

– Annoy job seekers

This can especially happen when a position that has been filled for many years by the same employee becomes available. Why? Because you know someone has grown in that position and had the knowledge of both the industry and the company to do more. Therefore, this role is a lot different to what it was originally. So, you should update the job title to reflect that. 


2. Keep Your Job Description Honest

We don’t want to catfish candidates. Make sure to not oversell the role. It’s better to be transparent about what the role involves. You, of course, want it to be attractive, but it’s not very effective if the new employee leaves within a month because the job isn’t what they were told it was. It’s better to get off on the right foot with your new employee; honesty is key to that.


3. Keep It Simple

A job title should be clear. It does not need to be pretty or over-the-top. Keep it simple. Use bullet points to make it easy for the candidates to skim, because that’s what they’re going to do first. Looking for a job is stressful, and with the internet, there are many websites and job-boards to look over. It’s easier and more manageable to skim and decide right there and then if they want to read it over fully. To make it scannable, you should:

– As already mentioned, use bullet points to break up the text (no one likes to read a wall of text)

– Highlight (bold it) key-words that you want to stand out to the candidate

– Each section should have a heading. You can change the title to whatever suits your company better. Sections you should consider include: 

  • Job role
  • Necessary skills
  • Nice-to-have skills
  • What’s in it for the candidate (benefits, competitive salary, WFH flexibility, for example)
  • About the company
    • Mission statement
    • Values
    • Company Culture


4. Categorise It Correctly

Every time I go on LinkedIn I see the same rant, or sometimes it comes in the form of a meme, which goes a little like this, “Seeking an entry-level candidate with 10 years of experience”. While the debate rages on about what is considered ‘entry-level’, be sure to categorise your job description correctly. This will deter (or at the very least, minimise) unsuitable applications, saving you time. If you’re not sure how to categorise it, you should ask a recruiter. They should be able to guide you on what category is suitable.


5. Have A Template (Consistency Is Key)

For your company, you want consistency. That’s why it’s essential to have a job description template. This ensures that no matter who posts the job description, it will be the same. It makes your business look more professional, and it just makes it an easier process. Less time is wasted repeatedly writing a job description from scratch, and it ensures that necessary parts of the job posting are not accidentally missed. Additionally, for parts on culture and benefits, they can just be copied and pasted as they don’t need to change from role to role. 


6. Highlight Your Company Culture

Once you have your potential candidate hooked, you need to show off! This is the perfect time to provide a *bite-sized* burst of your company culture. With culture being an important factor for 46% of jobseekers, it’s essential to show them what you’re made of. While you should keep it short, you can even utilise bullet points. You can always hyperlink to your employer’s branding web page, should they want to read more. 


7. Benefits. Benefits. Benefits.

As recruiters, we see many patterns and trends. One of them is that job seekers are looking for benefits. If you’ve got them – advertise them. Time and time again, we’ve found that benefits have swayed talent. In fact, we’ve considered it one of the  top four wants by candidates. Don’t underestimate it. Even if your organisation does not have the “usual” stock-standard benefits, put them in. Over the years, I’ve seen benefits in the form of:

– Volunteering days and giving back initiatives.

– Industry-leading parental leave packages

– Flexible working arrangements

– Private health insurance

– Products discounts

– Free premium access to fitness, nutrition, and mindfulness classes

No benefit is too small or insignificant. If you’ve got it. Use it.  


8. Formatting

Of course, if you’ve got a template – you need formatting! This relates to the readability of your job description. This is especially important when using different job sites. You may have seen on LinkedIn job posts that look very strange formatting wise. That’s because they’ve just been copied and pasted from another site or straight from a word document. Prevent that by testing. Try out your template on the different sites you’re going to use and see how it looks. You may have to create a few templates to suit each site; it’s time-consuming for sure, but absolutely worth it. And when you have those templates, it’s going to make the hiring process so much easier.


9. Spelling

Good spelling is important. It helps prevent confusion and makes it look clean and professional. In this, be sure to not use acronyms. What might be obvious to you, and even those inside your industry, might not be so for others. With it being a candidate-driven market, transferable skills are just as important. Someone who is from a completely different industry might have the skills you need, but won’t apply as they feel unqualified because they don’t understand the jargon.


Job descriptions are hard to write, at first. However, once you have a system in place, it gets easier. These tips should help you significantly in crafting your job description and subsequently finding the perfect candidate.


Nairi Togac

About the Author:

With global experience working in France, Armenia, and Australia, and in different industries (FMCG, business trading, and law firms), Nairi brings unique and invaluable insight into these diverse industries across the European and Australian markets. As a true matchmaker, Nairi is always up for a chat (around an oat cappuccino cup!) to understand candidates' expectations and assist them in finding their dream job and, likewise, help companies find the talent they need.
Read more about Nairi Togac.