Who’s Writing Your Company’s Job Descriptions?

By July 22, 2014 No Comments

writingIt sort of makes sense for the person who carries out a job from day to day to write his own job description.  He’s intimately familiar with the ins and outs of the position, the challenges he faces, the skills and competencies that come into play in his job and the handle he needs to have on specific software programs to perform his job well.

But… most of the time, job descriptions aren’t written by the people who know the role best, they’re drafted by department managers or HR staff who may have a different take altogether on the job in question.  The argument for why employees ought to be penning their own job descriptions is pretty compelling.  Here are the top three reasons you ought to consider reallocating this responsibility:

1. Managers tend to be busy – as do all of us, really – so smaller tasks such as writing job descriptions can be relegated to the back burner.  Delegate this item to subordinates, making it their responsibility to update job descriptions annually so that the verbiage remains up to date as roles evolve.  You’ll of course have final say, but reviewing takes far less energy than putting proverbial pen to paper.

2. Many employees are disengaged.  Writing their own job descriptions can be an exercise in designing the ideal version of their job: what they truly enjoy doing, feel qualified for and are challenged or motivated by.  You have some power here to make changes to some extent, crafting the jobs your employees want.

3. This can inform your hiring process.  Mobile advertising network Kiip has candidates write their own job descriptions.  If their description matches what the firm is looking for, they’ve got a potentially great fit.  And this strategy would do more than give you insight into the candidate’s strengths; it would also allow you to see how much they know about your company and its values.

Published by Conselium Executive Search, the global leader in compliance search.  

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