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Writing Job Descriptions and Specifications

All companies want to be able to hire the best people but to do so they must be clear about who they are looking for, what will be expected of them and how they can communicate this. To do this it is essential to be able to produce accurate job descriptions and specifications. 

Job Description 

The job description must cover every aspect of the role if you are going to attract the right candidate and keep them. You will need to include: 

Job Title – as this is the first line it will need to grab the attention of a potential candidate, for example if you are recruiting for a multi skilled engineer will they need an electrical or mechanical bias? 

Location – is the role based at one site, if its field based what area will they cover 

 

Salary / remuneration – be accurate, if it is negotiable what range will you pay, is there realistic opportunities to earn bonuses, overtime etc. What else is included e.g. company vehicle, tools etc. Other benefits such as the pension scheme, holiday pay, healthcare etc. 

Hours / shifts -  include any requirements for call outs or to cover any additional shifts, shutdowns etc. 

 

The Company – who the company is, what do you do, how many employees, part of a larger group, plans for the future etc. 

 

Duties and Responsibilities – what will their day to day duties be, what equipment will they be working on, who will they work with, will they be expected to carry out other duties, what will they be responsible for 

 

Opportunities – will they be able to progress, what training is provided 

 

Specification

 

The description outlines what the new hire will be doing but the specification outlines what exactly is required to do the job, this should include: 

Qualifications – for most maintenance and service roles candidates will need to have completed a recognised apprenticeship with relevant qualifications but be clear about what is essential and what is desirable, for example would a candidate with level 2 but many years’ experience still be able to do a job that was asking for level 3? 

 

Experience – be clear about what environments candidates will need experience in and what similar backgrounds could also be suitable, for example an engineer leaving the armed forces could adapt to a fast paced manufacturing site. Will they need to have worked on specific equipment before, is this essential or can training be provided.  

 

Other Skills – a good standard of IT skills can be needed for many jobs, also personal skills such as problem solving, leadership, written and verbal communication, will they be training operatives, dealing with customers at a senior level, do they need to be a team player or will they be working alone? 

 

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