Welcome to the second issue of Jobsgopublic’s ‘Help & Advice’ section of our client blog, your new source of essential reference information. We are delighted to once again have Glen Knott from People HR Solutions providing his expert insight.
In this issue we will be looking at job descriptions. What exactly is a job description and what is it used for? How does it differ from a person specification and what should be included in a good job description? What are the advantages of having a job description?
Have you ever seen that look of surprise or shock on a candidates face when you explain the details of a role in an interview?
Sick of hearing “Oh, I didn’t realise that that was what the job entailed?”
It might be worth making sure that your job descriptions are up-to-date and written properly.
Job descriptions serve as an extension of your job advert in detailing the requirements of a role. They should leave candidates in no doubt as to what exactly the purpose, duties and responsibilities of a role are ensuring that there are no surprises along the way. If done properly, soon enough all your applicants will come to interview fully aware of what will be expected of them. Wouldn’t that be nice?
A well-written, thorough job description reduces risk of dropouts between interview and ‘offer’ stages, as there should be no candidates running for the hills in shock when they find out something they weren’t expecting.
Job descriptions should come as a result of a job analysis during which all elements of the position should be broken down. This ensures that all aspects of the role are covered and can help in writing a person specification too as it highlights exactly what is required of a successful candidate.
It’s important to continuously update job descriptions for any role, you don’t want to be left in a position where you need a fully up-to-date version and you have to go and start asking people what they do. Maintain communication with managers and ask them to update you on ways that roles have changed. This will make your life a lot easier when it comes to recruitment.
For more information on job descriptions please download our fact sheet.
Glen Knott MSc Chartered FCIPD MBPS PMICS
Senior HR Practitioner
A former PA to the Leader of Birmingham City Council, Glen has worked in Human Resources since 1999. He has generalist HR experience and is a recruitment specialist.
Following successful completion of CIPD, Glen gained promotion to the post of Assistant Recruitment Manager at Birmingham. He was heavily involved in the design and implementation of the council’s Placement and Development service, later renamed ‘In-Source’, which saved Birmingham £3.5m in its first year of operation. In the last few years, Glen has played a lead role in the design and delivery of a career transition (outplacement) service at Birmingham, including the design and delivery of workshops to staff at all levels in the Council.
Glen has extensive recruitment experience from leading on a range of recruitment campaigns for jobs ranging from cook to cleaner, environmental health officer to social worker to Director of Fleet and Waste Management up to and including Chief Executive level. He is an experienced occupational tester, Level A and Level B qualified, and is registered with the British Psychological Society and is a Gold Member of the Institute of Customer Services.
A Chartered Fellow of CIPD, Glen now holds the position of Senior HR Practitioner at Birmingham. In 2007 he was awarded an MSc with Commendation in organisational development (HR) and management learning at the University of Central England in Birmingham and recently completed an NVQ Level 4 in Advice and Guidance.