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How to Write Job Descriptions That Attract Top Talent

how to write a job description

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Have you ever posted a job opening only to be overwhelmed by unqualified candidates? Do recruiting efforts result in a pile of resumes that don’t quite fit the job? It is possible your job descriptions are not performing their intended role, which is to target and attract candidates with the specific skills, experience and cultural fit for the role you are trying to fill.

Crafting effective job descriptions is crucial to targeting suitable applicants and reducing time-to-fill. The right description clearly conveys the required competencies and motivates candidates to apply. A well-written job description also inspires candidates with an authentic narrative about your company’s culture, vision and values.

Here are a few key strategies for writing job descriptions that get results.

Did you know that only about a third of job candidates say they are provided with clear job descriptions? Clearly, there’s room for improvement. A job description that clearly defines the role can help filter out unqualified candidates and target the talent you seek.

Clearly Define Qualifications

It’s important to be specific when listing non-negotiable requirements such as education or years of experience. Descriptions that are overly broad or vague leave too much room for interpretation.

For example, simply asking for a “bachelor’s degree” could attract candidates with vastly different academic backgrounds. Rather, state the desired field the degree should be in, such as “bachelor’s degree in computer science.” Or you might state any programs, training or field experience required in lieu of a degree.

Indicate any certifications and experience that you’d like to see, and be sure to note whether they are required, preferred or simply a plus.

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Reflect Your Unique Company Culture

Your organization has its own personality and work environment, so let it shine through in your job descriptions! Conveying the cultural essence of your company is vital for attracting candidates that are a good fit. For example:

  • Is the environment fast paced and competitive? Employee-focused? Supportive?
  • Are you looking for an independent self-starter, a collaborative team player or a creative problem solver?
  • Is the leadership style formal or informal?
  • Is workplace attire business casual or casual?
  • Is your workforce mostly remote, hybrid or in-office?
  • Do you offer regular team building, social events or support groups for employees?
  • Does the company value diversity? Work/life balance? Giving back through community service?
  • Do you offer training, career development or mentoring to employees?
  • Do you offer any unique benefits such as parental leave or flexible hours?

By painting a picture of your corporate culture, you will not only attract the right type of candidates, you’ll also weed out those who wouldn’t likely be a fit. Keep in mind, today’s job candidates are not merely seeking a paycheck but also want an engaging career journey that aligns with their needs and values.

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Tell a Story That Captures Imagination

Think of each job description as a story that builds intrigue around the role. Before diving into specific qualifications, open with an engaging overview paragraph summarizing the essence of the role. Use descriptive language highlighting the purpose, scope and impact of contributions.

For example, say, “As our new Director of Engineering, you will lead high-priority initiatives to design and develop innovative solutions that solve our customers’ most complex challenges.” By incorporating active words such as lead, create, innovate and solve, you can peak applicants’ interest. Weave-in elements of your mission or vision statement to align the job with big-picture goals. Descriptive phrases like “fast-paced” and “high-growth” signal an energizing culture, but use these terms judiciously, so that your narrative remains authentic.

Take time to build job descriptions that are clear, specific and inspiring. Focus on what makes the job extraordinary. Appeal to the ideal candidate’s passions, values and career goals. Your goal is to attract only qualified candidates who will be long-term assets to your business. When crafted thoughtfully, your job description will compel top talent to apply.

When The Going Gets Tough, a Recognized Staffing Firm Can Help

Recommended: 6 Smart Reasons to Use An IT Recruiting Firm

Sometimes finding qualified candidates is tough, even with the best job description. This is especially true when trying to fill a unique or highly technical role. In situations like this, it pays to work with an experienced staffing partner with proven experience filling niche roles.

Because experienced recruiters are constantly building and expanding their candidate pipelines, they have access to a broader range of top candidates who may not be actively seeking a career move. They also understand the nuances of skillsets, technical certifications and experience in technical fields, which allows them to identify transferable skills and uncover candidates with hidden potential.

Working with an experienced staffing partner, you can avoid missing out on qualified professionals who might be overlooked by automated systems and in-house recruiters. And because staffing companies pre-screen candidates according to your requirements, your hiring managers won’t waste time reviewing unqualified candidates.

Don’t Miss Out on Your Next Superstar

Attracting top-tier talent begins with a detailed and inspiring job description. However, crafting the right narrative requires thought, so be prepared to spend some time on it.

Collaborating with a staffing firm allows you to leverage a broader candidate pool, including both active job seekers and passive candidates not actively seeking employment. Experienced recruiters spend years developing relationships with candidates across the country and refining candidate pipelines in preparation for clients’ future job openings. When you need to fill an opening, they can help you hit the ground running.

Despite recent highly publicized layoffs, competition for the best talent remains fierce. Rethinking your job descriptions is a terrific way to revitalize recruiting efforts and improve hiring success. And if you need help finding the ideal candidates for one or more openings, contact BravoTECH at 800.726.7286 or visit

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