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Ensure a Positive Candidate Experience When Hiring Contingent Talent Remotely

As digitization, coupled with the global pandemic, propels contingent hiring online and with more individuals relying on employer reviewer sites to evaluate businesses, delivering a positive[...]

March 10, 2021

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Job Descriptions: Your Opening Move for Contingent Program Success

Besides being great advertising tools, job descriptions provide staffing suppliers with vital information to carry out an efficient talent sourcing process. Unclear, out of date, or incomplete job descriptions can hinder that process. 

Creating and maintaining concise job descriptions is an often-overlooked way to help your organization make the best hires possible. 

This is especially true for contingent workforce programs, where job descriptions can help bridge communication gaps between hiring managers and external staffing partners. If communication between hiring managers and staffing agencies is a problem, a job description can help serve as the ‘narrative’ for the recruiters working on filling roles. This means that the clearer your job descriptions are, the better your chances of ending up with the right type of candidates and positive hiring outcomes.

Beyond acting as a conduit for recruiters to find the right candidates, well-written job descriptions help establish expectations for both employer and employee. Maintaining transparency with potential candidates drives a positive candidate experience and helps get employees started off on the right foot when transitioning into a role. And, by setting expectations, they enable employers to more precisely evaluate employee performance. Lastly, job descriptions can serve as reliable legal documentation to protect your business from fraudulent lawsuits.

In a nutshell, your job descriptions act as a primary filter by allowing the best candidates to rise at the top, and optimizing them is an easy way to improve your contingent hiring program. 

Avoid Common Pitfalls by Incorporating These Best Practices in Your Job Descriptions:

Use industry-standard job titles to make candidate sourcing easier. 

Your job title plays a significant role in the candidate sourcing process. A recent survey in HR Daily Advisor found that 26% of people felt that their job title did not accurately describe their daily responsibilities, and 35% of people are willing to quit their job for a better job title elsewhere.  

Standardization and specificity are two ways to make sure that your job description finds the right candidates. Standardized job titles are not only easier to understand but also make your job descriptions SEO friendly. They also enable your staffing partners to filter the right candidates based on their previous experiences. 

Adding specificity also helps candidates understand expectations - for example, a tax accountant may do very different work and require a different skill set than a corporate project accountant. Steer clear of generalized or hyperbolic buzzwords like ninja, guru, etc. which can negatively impact your talent sourcing process by diverting qualifying candidates who might balk at these titles. 

Make every word count in your job description.

Treat your job descriptions like an elevator pitch. You want to communicate the most important aspects of the job position, so avoid generic and uninformative descriptions. Instead, find a balance between short and sweet vs informative.

Make sure your job descriptions are complete by clearly defining the roles and responsibilities, the necessary skills, and qualifications required. Avoid vague wording like ‘assists’, ‘takes care’, etc. which can potentially confuse your candidate. Instead, provide candidates with the context they need while spelling out every requirement. For example, if your business is looking for an HR analyst proficient in HR reporting, instead of merely stating ‘great analytical skills’ in your requirements section, alter your description to something like this: If you are familiar with this role, you are an expert with excel functionalities like vlookup and data formatting to conduct attrition analyses and predict future hiring trends. 

Lack of clarity in your job descriptions predisposes your employees to role ambiguities, which is a contributing factor to occupational stress. This leads to several negative implications like decreased employee engagement, overall job dissatisfaction, and lowered organizational commitment, causing damages to your business in the long run.   

Talk about company culture --- but not too much.

While it is great to speak about company culture in your job descriptions, focusing on culture to  attract more candidates is not always an effective talent sourcing strategy. A study conducted by LinkedIn confirms that candidates are more interested in details concerning compensation, qualifications, and job specifics rather than learning about the organization’s company culture. 

A well-written job role fine-tuned to your company culture implicitly conveys the cultural aspect to your potential candidates. Adjust the tone and feel of your job descriptions to achieve the optimal balance between being your company/brand voice and the details of the job - being too casual can decrease the candidate’s likelihood to apply.

Portray a clear definition of what success looks like in your job descriptions.

As mentioned earlier, your job description’s influence extends far beyond the candidate sourcing process. Thus, it’s important to plan to update your job descriptions on a regular basis, to understand the timely requirements of a particular job. 

Conveying what success looks like for a position attracts the right candidates and strengthens your performance appraisal process. To do this, focus on writing performance-based job descriptions, which spell out the chief objectives a candidate must achieve in that particular role. 

Use inclusive language and vocabulary to support diversity initiatives through your job descriptions.  

Businesses are beginning to realize the importance of having a diverse workforce. It’s no doubt that diversity in the workplace fosters innovation, creativity, and improved performance. To attract a diverse candidate pool, start with your job descriptions. As we are moving into a world where the dimensions of diversity are inexhaustive, be sure to avoid all forms of unconscious bias in your job descriptions.

A great example of inclusivity is to avoid gender bias by utilizing neutral adjectives/pronouns in your job descriptions. You can also make paradigm shifts in your candidate sourcing process by being cognizant of the cognitive processing of individuals with learning difficulties. With over 40 million American adults impacted by Dyslexia, relying on standard job description formats can inadvertently disincentivize potential applicants from that particular diversity spectrum. Hence, make sure your job descriptions have the right colors, fonts, and alignments to make your job descriptions dyslexia-friendly. Using these slight tweaks in your job descriptions, you can enhance your diversity and inclusion initiatives. 

Using Job Descriptions To Match Your Job With The Right Candidates and Suppliers

Crowdstaffing understands that a well-crafted job description increases the speed and quality of your hires. When a job is posted to our hiring marketplace it’s assigned a job completeness score based on how complete the job description and other fields are. That’s because our matching algorithms use each job description and details to connect your job description to the talent suppliers and candidates most likely to succeed in filling that role. 

Curious to know more about our intelligent candidate sourcing process?

Schedule a demo with us today.

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