Are You Limiting Your Potential Competitive Advantage Through Your Job Postings?

How specific are your job postings? You post a job and that job has specific knowledge, skills and/or abilities that the person needs. These things can be acquired in a variety of ways. Some postings are very specific on requirements, while others are vague and open to interpretation. I’ve seen many that require at least five years of experience in a specific role before a candidate will even be considered. And the truth of the matter is, more times than not specific requirements aren’t even validated as needed. It just sounds good.

While I echo Ben Eubank’s advice to job seekers from his post Be Able to Do the Job, especially the emphasis on candidates not lying about their experience or knowledge, I wonder if as leaders we are limiting our hiring pool and potential competitive advantage through people by being too restrictive in the requirements advertised in job postings.

You see, hard and fast skills are much easier to ask for in a job posting. It’s easier to say five years of experience in accounting or a degree in accounting, than it is to ask and assess for things that are “fuzzy” like motivational characteristics or ability to get along with others.

Are we missing out on people who have the will (desire and appropriate personality) to do the job at the sacrifice of just finding people who have the hard and fast skills? In my opinion, will is much harder to assess and quantify, but much more valuable in the long run.

Are your job postings too restrictive?

Check back next week to see the real reason I think most people hiring for skill over will…


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Selection 101: Skill vs. Will

Mary Ila Ward

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