In a nutshell, a great Job Description should concurrently excite yet screen candidates. You want to sell and differentiate the position from the scores of others, but you also want it to accurately portray your requirements so only qualified candidates apply.About 50% of the time, I find job descriptions to be inaccurate. For example, I get a JD for a VP, Engineering.It has a list of about 100 Must Have requirements. Then I call the CEO to discuss the position. In the course of the conversation, it turns out that they really only need 10 key items in their background, and the priority order listed in the JD is backwards.You will rule out the right people and attract the wrong people if the JD does not reflect your actual needs.
There should be 4 main parts to your Job Description:
Please see the following example that I wrote for a client, to get a sense of how the final product should look.
Job Description Example
Company A is a funded startup with excellent advisors including X, Y and Z. We are seeking our first VP of Engineering to lead our development efforts. The successful candidate will fill a key leadership role, and will be integral in building out a team, planning, developing, testing and meeting all major development milestones. This candidate will help our company scale by creating the development roadmap for advanced feature sets and innovation, as well as providing day to day mentoring and leadership for our Engineering team that he/she will help build.
The ideal candidate will have 6+ years’ experience in Software Engineering, currently serving as a hands-on technology leader. Your current day to day should be at least 75% hands on architecture, design and coding, with the balance being focused on mentoring/leading other engineers (hiring, code review, etc) and other leadership tasks. You must have experience scaling high volume sites, and SaaS is a big plus. The right candidate will understand the dedication, passion and sense of urgency that comes with the territory of building a company from the seed stage.
Our Technology Environment: Java, ReactJS, Go, Postgres, Native Mobile, iOS, AWS
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