Job descriptions — HR’s love letters

Feb. 14, 2012 | by Nate DaPore
Job descriptions — HR’s love letters

It's Valentine's Day. I am sure that some of you celebrate, some of you don't and a few are the diehard anti-card-and-flowers type... But I'm going with the theme of the day, so work with me here.

Great job descriptions are like great love letters. You have to "romance" potential applicants to land Ms. or Mr. Right for your team. Generating interest in your "pitch" is the key to drawing the best candidates.

Some companies like to start strong with a power title. It gives future employees a confidence boost. Would you rather be a "Front Desk Assistant," or a "Corporate Concierge?" PeopleMatter looks at this role as the first impression of our company to any guest, customer, prospect or potential team member. This person also provides support to the entire team in multiple ways, including booking travel, so we have a "Corporate Concierge." Your culture and brand can affect the way choose to give titles. For example, if you have a 'fun-loving' culture, maybe you call your line cooks 'Kitchen Ninjas.'

Whether you start with a fun title, or use a standard one, the job responsibilities should highlight your future hires' best features. In love letters, the writer might go on about someone's eyes or their smile ... but in a job description it is all about the skills. If you're looking for someone talented in customer service, perhaps you need someone with "an upbeat personality and an infectious go-get-'em attitude." Choosing a fun and positive way to describe the role makes it more appealing to high-quality candidates.

If flattery isn't enough — just like love letters — be sure to make promises you plan on keeping. Woo your future employees with security and honesty. Tell them the salary range they can expect and the benefits of being in a professional relationship with your business. Share the schedule flexibility or great health benefits you offer and be sure to pull out all the stops. If there are growth opportunities, let them know how you see their career developing in your organization. Flexible scheduling may be the No. 1 way to attract candidates, but career growth potential is the No. 1 way to retain your employees.

Another key to enticing your valentine and top talent is to set yourself apart from the competition. Use your "job-description love letter" to feature your company's culture. Define what you're looking for as the right fit. If your restaurant is fine dining and seeking a cultured individual, make it clear from the very beginning. Don't waste your time, or candidates' time, trying to woo someone destined for fast casual. Build a team that is "meant for each other." The relationships your people have with each other effect the service they provide, your customers' satisfaction and their level of engagement with your business.

If you expect above average from your employees and want loyalty and excellence, give them the respect and recognition they deserve. Pursue the very best from the beginning, and maintain the connection. It's like any healthy relationship. You make sure the other person knows they are valuable. It's all about clear communication ... and it starts with a "love letter."

Topics: Human Resources, Operations Management, Staffing & Training

Nate DaPore
Nate DaPore, PeopleMatter President and Chief Executive Officer As the spirited leader of PeopleMatter, Nate is passionate about providing team members, including his own, with a rewarding workplace experience that values creativity and innovation. wwwView Nate DaPore's profile on LinkedIn

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