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  • Writer's pictureJosh Kiernan

How to Keep Job Descriptions Updated & Accurate with Requirements Always Changing

Updated: Apr 1

Here are 7 steps to take to keep your job descriptions relevant and up to date at all times, even with consistently changing job requirements & organizational needs.

Outdated job descriptions can lead to missed opportunities for recruiters and inaccurate compensation decisions based on inaccurate data.


Accurate compensation planning & recruiting/retaining employees is a challenging task for businesses of all sizes. 


It is critical to keep job descriptions updated and accurate, but with job requirements and skills changing rapidly every year how can HR teams ensure their JDs keep up?. 



Job Description


How do you keep job descriptions updated?


1. Establish a Job Description Management Process


The first step in keeping job descriptions up to date and accurate is to establish a job description management process.


Without a defined job description management process in place organizations cannot establish the controls needed to ensure HR, compensation, and talent acquisition are all on the same page, communicating effectively, and aligned on when updates are needed.


Organizations who have a defined job description process understand who owns the JD, when reviews should happen, and have a process in place for all parties who are involved with the job description to provide feedback in a way that will keep job descriptions updated and accurate.


This will also eliminate team members accidentally using different or outdated versions of the job description - reducing the risk of hires that have skills not aligned with the job.


Need help establishing a job description process? Check out our step-by-step guide.


2. Select a Review Cadence for JDs & Alert System for Dated JDs


Once a foundation is in place that establishes a defined job description process, you will need to establish a central repository for your JD catalog.


Many companies that work with us come from a manual system - from excel spreadsheets, to shared files, or G-suite.


These systems can be challenging when it comes to establishing a cadence for updates. Many of them do not allow for alerts to be setup, simplistic collaboration tools, or version history.


These components are critical to establishing a review cadence that will ensure JDs are accurate and up-to-date at all times.


With Mosh JD our clients use our built-in alerts to notify us when JDs are outdated or in the process of being reviewed. All suggestions, edits, and changes are tracked with a date and time stamp.


Establishing these controls, whether through a software like ours or another method, will facilitate a process where JDs always stay updated and accurate.


3. Incorporate feedback and industry standards


Make it a part of your process to seek and include valuable feedback from your managers, employees, and other stakeholders on the job descriptions into the revisions can help you craft a perfect job description.


"Front-line" staff and managers know what it takes to be successful in a role more than anyone in the company.


It is crucial to gain their feedback and encourage managers to notify HR when jobs need updating based on role requirements.


It's also important to follow the standards of your industry, as well as the ethical and legal guidelines. It is critical to ensure that your job descriptions are compliant with the relevant laws and regulations, such as equal opportunity, anti-discrimination, and labor rights, and that they do not contain any discriminatory or biased language.


4. Use Ai to Save Time 


AI can be a powerful ally in the job description management process. In particular, use Chat GPT for job descriptions to help you in a few key ways:


  • Develop first draft job descriptions - especially for roles new to the company

  • Develop a skills list based on industry data

  • Create core competencies and leveling frameworks

  • Scan existing job descriptions to benchmark them against industry data to make improvements/updates


Proceed with caution though - as AI is known to be prone to errors and inherit bias based on its design. ALAWAYS review the results for accuracy, conduct peer reviews, and seek expertise around legal requirements.


Read more about how to use Chat GPT for job descriptions in our step-by-step guide.


5. Communicate and distribute job descriptions effectively


Communicating and distributing updated job descriptions to your managers, employees, and other relevant parties efficiently is crucial for the organization’s reputation. 


Make sure to explain the benefits and reasons for updating the job descriptions, and how they affect employee performance and compensation.


It is crucial to provide optimum training and support to your HR managers and employees on how to keep the job descriptions updated and how to make them accessible and visible on your website or other platforms.


Keeping your job descriptions current and relevant will help you improve your employee engagement, talent management, and organizational effectiveness. 


6. Align job descriptions with organizational goals


It is crucial to keep your job descriptions aligned with your organization's vision and strategic goals.


The job descriptions should reflect the mission, core values, and culture of your organization, as well as the outcomes and specific objectives of each job function. 


Consider how each job contributes to the overall performance and success of your organization and highlight the key competencies, skills, and behaviors that are expected from each employee.


7. Use clear and concise language


If inclusion and diversity are a priority at your company and you want to fill your pipeline with more diverse applicants, it is critical to use clear, neutral, and concise language to write job descriptions.


LinkedIn found that men tend to apply 13% more often than women, after viewing a job and non-inclusive language used in job posts is often the culprit.



Therefore, it is crucial to generate gender-balanced, clear, and easy-to-understand job posts. You should avoid acronyms, jargon, and vague terms that may mislead or confuse current or potential employees. 


Conclusion


In conclusion, by following these tips and practices, you can ensure that your job descriptions are relevant, accurate, and updated.


It can be difficult and time-consuming to manage job descriptions, however, job description software can make it easy!


Job description management software can be a valuable tool for businesses that want to improve their recruitment, retention, and compensation effectiveness.


By ensuring consistency and accuracy, clarity of expectations, saving time, increasing visibility, supporting performance management, and facilitating career development, job description software can help businesses retain existing employees while attracting top talent.


If you are in search of such software, Mosh JD can help.


Visit our home page and schedule a demo today!


FAQS


How often should job descriptions be reviewed?


Job descriptions must be revised at least once a year, but multiple reviews a year and as job requirements or business requirements change is ideal. 


What is the process for analyzing a job description when updating?


The job description analysis process consists of six essential steps;


  1. Review the job requirements

  2. Research similar job descriptions

  3. Define the outcomes required for the job

  4. Determine the qualifications, skills, and training required

  5. Communicate the compensation

  6. Continue to evolve the job description 


References

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