To a new hire, a job description summarizes the duties on the job of interest. It speaks of the employer’s expectation in no uncertain terms, and in fairness to the employer, is an offshoot of what the candidate declared he/she could deliver through the recruitment process. So for all those who as much as possible present perfect recitals at interviews and get away with it, the JD comes back to haunt you when you get the job! Yes, unfortunately many candidates can talk the talk, but cannot work the talk, in the same way that poor presentation can cause a potential star candidate to lose an opportunity. The real test begins when you bag the job, so tread cautiously.
Business leaders appreciate the significance of hiring and retaining the best people. Well written JDs help deliver precise valuations of recruitment needs and provide a baseline against which to evaluate an applicant’s credentials and subsequently an employee’s performance. To be the best candidate or employee at a given time, you must be the job description!
Needless to say, most star employees step well outside their JDs as they are adaptable to multiple diverse roles as the needs arise, however to at least meet the expectations of the JD is the starting point. As much as it can be your guide to being successful, it’s also the employer’s stick in the absence of the need for a carrot.
To be the job description simply means to thoroughly understand its expectations, in terms of your competencies, delivery contributions to the organisation, reporting lines, career succession and even the identification of training needs where applicable. This is because often enough, the JD clearly shows the skills required to succeed at that job and thus gaps are immediately identified. Additionally, well written job descriptions are usually able to convey the ideals of an organisation’s culture, thus, the JD is able to subtly express the company’s culture and a candidate can immediately identify if this is for him/her. Conversely, a new employee can ideally deliver in line with the company’s core belief.
Certainly, the JD is a very vital document through any recruitment process and consequently following an acceptance of a role. To adhere to it to the letter is a sure way to set the ball rolling for success. Sometimes, employees complain that their subordinates are more amiable to other members of the team; it might have something to do with the fact that the person is more the JD than you are. Simply put, if you’re going to accept a job, you must be willing to work in line with its descriptions… To be the JD, be what it says as much as you can and you’ll get the hang of it sooner than you think!
Subsequently, we’ll take a sample JD, and describe the expectation of the applicant or the employee on the role so we see just how easy and practicable it can be… Watch out for the Live JD!