Why Job Requirements are Important and How to Document Them Successfully

Jun 2, 2020 | Recruiting | 0 comments

When you’re writing a job posting or job description, the job requirements are one of the most important sections you will write.

So, what are job requirements and why are they important? We cover all that as well as offering a job requirements template for you as an example.

What Are Job Requirements?

Job requirements refer to the skills and qualifications that are necessary to land a role. Usually, you will find this list on the job description and job posting so that job seekers can find it. Job requirements are also referred to as the selection criteria or prerequisites. It is a list of criteria which describe your ideal candidates.

The Importance of Job Requirements

Job requirements are vital, both for employers and job seekers alike. The main thing they achieve is that the candidate knows what is expected of them before they apply for a position.

Job requirements are important for you because it’s an easy way to weed out candidates. Anyone who doesn’t meet these criteria may be taken out of the candidate pool. For example, if they don’t meet the education requirements. The common exception to this is if they have equivalent experience or skills to those described.

The other main benefit for you as HR staff or hiring managers is that you have clearly defined what you are looking for in a candidate. This can help to attract qualified candidates to the job listings. When completing their job search, potential applicants may not apply for a position when they aren’t sure if they are qualified for the job. You need to be specific to have your ideal candidate apply.

Common Job Requirements

There are 8 important categories that job requirements generally fall into. These are:

Work experience

This refers to how long you have been in similar roles in the past. You need to know how much they know about this type of role as this will determine how long it takes them to start being productive in it. Or maybe they don’t have the experience necessary to know how to do the job.

Level of education and type

You’ll often find that a relevant bachelor’s degree is entered as the minimum level of education required. However, some employers will overlook this in favor of experience. It depends on how highly technical the role is.

Skills (technical or soft skills)

Each position you post will require different skills necessary for that job. These skills cover a wide range of types. For example, a receptionist may require typing skills, but a computer programmer may require coding skills.

Professional licenses or certifications

Depending on the role, it may be a necessity that the applicant has the correct license or certification. Some examples are therapists, doctors, or chartered accountants. It could be something they legally can’t perform the role without, or it may be just a preference of your company.

Relevant knowledge

There may be some specific knowledge required by candidates for a role. This is often gained through qualifications or experience but may be outside of that. One example of specific knowledge needed would be a social worker who needs to understand the needs of a certain community.

Languages

Some roles will require a candidate to be bilingual or have a certain level of ability to speak in another language. This could be language teachers, translators, or international business people.

Personal characteristics and qualities

This section is more about job fit and culture fit. What type of person do you want working at your company? Do they need to be motivated, progressive, creative?

Physical abilities

Certain jobs require physical abilities as part of the role. For example, warehouse staff or personal trainers.

Documenting Job Requirements

The next step is to document your job requirements by writing them into the job description or posting. Wondering how to do it?

Here are some factors to consider:

Use bullet points

The candidate is more likely to read them all and it keeps it easy to read.

Be specific

Vague language can turn candidates off applying as they aren’t sure if they are qualified or not.

Don’t have too many job requirements

Try to choose less than 10 of the most vital. Otherwise, the applicants may feel overwhelmed and not apply (even if they are qualified).

Be open-minded

Some applicants may be able to succeed and flourish in the role even if they don’t hold a tertiary qualification. Seeking specific educational requirements is starting to be considered old school. Keep an open mind and consider who can do the job – you may be surprised by what you find.

Job Requirements Example

Here’s an example of a job requirements section in a job posting.

About You:

a) Relevant Bachelor’s Degree

b) 3+ years’ experience in a similar role

c) Fantastic communication skills

d) Ability to collaborate and work across teams

This is simple and focuses on exactly what is required of the applicants.

There you have it. Job requirements are not too hard to write once you know how to do it. Stick mostly to the 8 important categories, don’t write too many, and make them easy to understand. Hopefully, this will attract some wonderful candidates for your next role.

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