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How To Write A Job Description (With Examples)

By Di Doherty - Dec. 14, 2022
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Job descriptions are a very important part of the recruitment process. It is, after all, where your potential employees find out if a job is available and what the requirements for it are. Job seekers will choose whether or not to apply based on what’s written in your job description, meaning it’s your first communication with potential new employees.

Key Takeaways:

  • A good job description is an essential recruiting tool.

  • Be sure to include all relevant information such as the job title, summary, qualifications, responsibilities, as well as salary and benefits.

  • They’re most applicants’ first exposure to the organization, so they should be error-free, concise, and give a hint of the company culture.

  • Not everything about the job can fit in a job description, so it’s best to boil it down to what’s most important.

What Is a Job Description?

A job description is included in a recruitment ad. It describes the job’s title, responsibilities, and requirements. This is how job seekers find out if it’s a job they’re qualified for and has duties that they believe they can fulfill. They’ll also get an idea of the chain of command, salary, and how many hours they’re expected to work per week.

Unless your organization is especially large or famous, it’s also likely the job seeker’s first introduction to it. That means that trying to put a feel for the company culture into the description can be helpful, as it gives potential applicants an idea of the sort of organization they’d be working for.

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How to Write a Job Description

Writing a job description is similar to any other writing project. You need to know what it is you want to write, what to include, what not to include, and make sure it’s error-free. That means it’s a bit of a process, but thankfully job descriptions are often short, meaning that you don’t have to put a lot of words down.

Here are some things to consider when writing a job description:

  • Include all relevant information. There are pieces of information that must be included in a job description. These include the job title, requirements to get hired, who they report to, expected hours, whether it’s in person or work from home, and the responsibilities the position entails. It’s also a very good idea to include a salary range.

  • Allude to the company culture. This is likely the applicant’s first exposure to your organization. Give them an idea of the sort of office culture they can expect, so they’ll have an idea of whether or not they’ll fit in there.

  • Keep it concise. Most people who are searching for a job end up applying to a bunch of different positions. That means that they spend a lot of time reading job descriptions. If yours is too long or dense, then it’s likely to make them cross-eyed before they finish it. Put in the information that’s required, then be sparing in additional details.

  • Look at examples. This can include templates and other examples – such as the ones included in this article – as well as posted job descriptions on job sites like Zippia. Consider what you find appealing or helpful and what you find off-putting or confusing. Use both of those things to know what to do and what to avoid.

  • Don’t be too rigid in the requirements. It’s good to list the education, experience, and skills you feel are necessary to do the job. However, it’s also a good idea to split them into the need to have and nice to have. If your requirements are too strict, then you’re going to have a lot of job seekers decide they aren’t qualified enough to apply.

    If it’s a specialized position or one that’s in high demand, then being strict isn’t necessarily bad. But if it isn’t either of those things, you may not get as many candidates as you’d like. Remember that it takes effort to apply to a position, so if they expect it’ll be an automatic no, then they won’t bother. And you may lose an excellent candidate.

  • Don’t be too creative. While it is good to give them a taste of the company culture, trying to be too creative about it or writing a job description that stands out is rarely a good idea. Many candidates will be put off by a description that’s too offbeat, and if it’s not done just right, they may even be confused by it.

  • Put yourself in job seekers’ shoes. Almost all of us have done a job search at some point in our careers. Very few people have fond memories of the experience. So try to look at your job description as a potential applicant would.

    Does it have all the relevant information? Is it clear? Does it sound like the sort of place you would want to work? Is the salary competitive? If it isn’t, does it offer other benefits to make up for it?

  • Proofread it. There isn’t much that’s more unprofessional looking than misspelled words in a job description. It’s not going to make the company look well-organized or thorough, and it may make job seekers look elsewhere. Be sure that your sentences are clear and make sense and that everything is spelled correctly.

What to Include in a Job Description

There are a few musts to put in a job description:

  • Job title. While some companies are getting creative with job titles, it’s an iffy proposition. Many experienced job seekers try to compare this position with an equivalent one, and that’s very difficult to do if you create unique titles.

  • Job summary. This should be kept to a paragraph. Explain the basics of what the job is and what it entails.

  • Responsibilities. The applicant should be aware of what will be expected of them. Of course, it’ll likely be impossible to put down every responsibility and expectation for the job without a lengthy list, but do your best to distill it into the most important aspects.

  • Who would the applicant report to? Knowing the chain of command is also important. You don’t need to list the person’s name, but you should give them an idea of who their direct supervisor will be.

  • Requirements. Be sure to list what experience, education, or other training you require applicants to have. If you don’t, you may get a flood of unqualified applicants, or you may end up with no applicants at all, as people will be unsure of what you’re looking for.

  • Expected hours. The majority of jobs will be full-time, of course. But either way, that should be specified. If it’s part-time, it’s a good idea to state how many hours to expect. If there is expected availability, it’s not a bad idea to mention that, either, especially if it’s part-time or outside typical work hours.

  • Whether it’s in person or working from home, in most cases, if you don’t specify, job seekers will assume it’s an in-office job. But work-from-home or hybrid schedules are becoming more common, and many younger workers prioritize them. That means that if you do have flexibility, then it’s best to be upfront about it as a way to attract talent.

  • Instructions to apply. This is extremely important. If you make it confusing or difficult to apply for the job, the number of applications you get will be low. And the ones you do get will be inconsistent. Also, setting up instructions like that is a good way to see how well the potential employee can pay attention to detail and follow directions.

  • Salary range. It’s not unheard of for job descriptions not to include this information. However, the position’s salary is the primary reason that people choose a job. That means that a number of people may decide to not bother to apply if you don’t list a salary range.

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What Not to Put in a Job Description

  • Exclusionary language. You want to encourage as many people to apply as possible to be sure you get the best candidates. It’s also good to have diversity in the workplace, even if it isn’t mandated.

    Using exclusionary language or specific pronouns can have a chilling effect on applicants. If you really want to avoid the singular they, then vary your pronouns.

  • Lingo or jargon. While this could fall under the umbrella of exclusionary language, it is still its own category. It can be tempting to use jargon in the job description, but it can either end up pushing out candidates who are qualified but aren’t up on the lingo or those who feel that it makes you look like a tryhard.

  • Irrelevant information. While it’s good to allude to the company culture, including a long section about it isn’t advisable. This can also include explanations about why the position is available or anything that doesn’t directly relate to the job.

  • Being patronizing. While this is an uncommon problem in job descriptions, it can happen. It’s mostly an issue of harping on explanations, such as how to apply. Some people will submit applications incorrectly. Chances are this will happen no matter how clearly you explain or how much attention you draw to it.

    Don’t irritate the people who read the directions by being overly aggressive or obnoxiously explicit in your directions. Make sure they’re clear, but don’t harp on them.

Job Description Template

Job descriptions usually follow a set template. There are many different services that offer job description templates, like Smartsheets, but in case you don’t have access to those, here’s one to start with.

[Job Title] [Job Summary]

This should be a brief description of the job and how it fits in the company. It’s often a good idea to include a general metric of success and expectations. You can include who they’d report to here, or you can list it separately.


  • Use this to list the most important responsibilities and duties of this position.

  • Be sure to use complete sentences.

  • Try to keep them short and punchy. Start with a verb whenever possible.

  • Use inclusive language.

  • Don’t list too many. Try to keep it brief and highlight the most important ones.


  • Use this to list what qualifications you need to apply.

  • Required education.

  • Required experiences.

  • Required skills.

  • Required certifications or training.

  • Required licenses.

  • Required physical abilities.

Nice to have qualifications.

  • This is optional.

  • It’s a good idea to break this out into another section if possible.

  • You can highlight who would be the best candidates but not exclude other qualified applicants.

Salary range and benefits.

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Job Description Examples

Searching through job descriptions can be overwhelming. If possible, it’s best to look at descriptions for job titles that are identical or similar to the one you’re planning to write. But to start off, here are a couple of examples.

  • Example 1: Baker Job Description

    We are looking to hire a new baker. Your primary job will be keeping up a supply of quality pastries, cookies, cakes, pies, and other baked goods for our customers. However, we’ll also want you to help create new recipes, make sure that ingredients are properly stocked, and keep the baking schedule coordinated.

    This is a part-time position with an expected 20 hours per week, mainly in the morning. You will report directly to the pastry chef.

    Baker duties and responsibilities:

    • Maintain an appropriate stock of fresh baked goods for sale.

    • Ensure compliance with food safety standards.

    • Maintaining proper supplies, inventory, and equipment.

    • Assess the quality of raw goods upon receipt.

    • Decorate baked goods with glaze, icing, and fondant to maintain a finished and appealing appearance.


    • One year of experience in a bakery (or equivalent)

    • Experience with baking utensils and equipment.

    • Knowledge of and compliance with food safety standards and regulations.

    • Ability to work in a noisy and fast-paced environment.

    • This job requires spending a long time standing and being able to lift up to 50 pounds.

    Salary will range from 15-20 dollars per hour based on experience.

  • Example 2: Marketing Assistant Job Description

    We are looking for a marketing assistant that will be a self-starting addition to our team. You will support senior marketing staff as they execute marketing campaigns. You’ll be expected to communicate effectively with other departments as needed, prepare reports, and administer surveys, questionnaires, and other tools to determine the effectiveness of marketing campaigns.

    This is a full-time hybrid position. You will be expected to come to the office at least two days per week. You’ll be reporting to the marketing manager.

    Marketing Assistant Responsibilities:

    • Assist senior marketing staff in executing and assessing marketing campaigns.

    • Keep up communication with other departments and help keep the marketing campaign consistent.

    • Generate reports on the effectiveness of the campaign and other possible marketing strategies.

    • Aid with surveys, questionnaires, and other ways of assessing marketing campaigns.

    • Write copy for marketing materials as needed.


    • A bachelor’s degree in marketing, psychology, communications, or a related field.

    • Familiarity and experience with social media.

    • Strong written and verbal communication skills.

    Salary will range from 25,000 to 30,000 depending on experience. Include full benefits, health insurance, sick leave, two weeks of vacation, and parental leave.

Di has been a writer for more than half her life. Most of her writing so far has been fiction, and she’s gotten short stories published in online magazines Kzine and Silver Blade, as well as a flash fiction piece in the Bookends review. Di graduated from Mary Baldwin College (now University) with a degree in Psychology and Sociology.


Di Doherty

Di has been a writer for more than half her life. Most of her writing so far has been fiction, and she’s gotten short stories published in online magazines Kzine and Silver Blade, as well as a flash fiction piece in the Bookends review. Di graduated from Mary Baldwin College (now University) with a degree in Psychology and Sociology.

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Topics: Creating A New Position, Writing A Job Description