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Thu, May 10, 2012

Talent Acquisition

Use Creative Job Titles, Descriptions to Attract Top Talent

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Most businesses “view the job description as an administrative document,” something boring and bland that only contains the most basic and necessary information — and that’s a mistake, Jon Picoult, founder and principal of Watermark Consulting says in this video from the Monster Resource Center.

Talent acquisition is a business just like any other, he explains, so “your job titles are really your product names and you job descriptions are your marketing” copy. As you write them, you need to use the same consideration you would dedicate to creating a product name and its accompanying marketing materials.

“I’m not suggesting that you exaggerate” or provide inaccurate information, Picoult said, but you can inject some creativity and marketing spin into the process. Also avoid using words that have a negative connotation or may seem stuffy or out of date.

“By choosing a job title carefully and crafting a job description thoughtfully it’s another way to get your brand out there and help people see ‘wow, this company is different; this business is really different and this is a job I’m really interested in learning more about,’” he explained.

Think about two different titles that could easily fit on top of the same accurate job descriptions: personnel recruiter vs. talent scout. “Those create very different impressions with people and I think it points to the notion that the words and labels that you use throughout” your organization make a difference, says Picoult. “You have an opportunity to shape people’s thoughts” about the opportunities you’re offering.

While you’re accurately detailing what tasks the job involves, you should also write about why, says Picoult. “What’s the purpose of the job? Not just what’s the nature of the job.”

“Very often people like to be part of something that’s bigger than themselves,” he explains. “The notion of being able to work for a company and operate in a role where I have a sense of meaning to what I am doing — a sense of purpose — that can be very powerful for people and really attract them to a particular company or a particular job.”

This is particularly true for the youngest members of today’s workforce, as described in a previous post on How Small Businesses Can Recruit Gen Y Talent.

“Rarely do you see job descriptions that ever talk about purpose. But I think that’s a powerful way to market an opportunity,” Picoult concludes.

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  • http://jobtipsforgeeks.com Dave Fecak

    I’d agree with this, but don’t get too creative or cute when your target audience won’t appreciate it. As a recruiter of software engineers, I always find it troubling when a company uses a title such as ‘Software Engineer IV’ or ‘Architect Level 3′. When candidates consider jobs at larger companies that typically use these types of titles, they have a fear of the prospect of ‘just becoming a number’ at a large organization, and the use of titles like this just makes that metaphor a reality.