When advertising a job, it is important to understand the difference between a job specification and a job description. A job specification statement provides an overview of the necessary interpersonal skills, qualifications, and personality traits required to fulfill a particular role. On the other hand, a job description provides an overview of the duties, responsibilities, and functions of the job.
When creating a job advertisement, both a job description and a job specification should be included, along with a suitable job summary (you can find examples in our job description library). The job description informs candidates about what they will be expected to do in the role, while the job specification outlines the required mental capabilities and educational qualifications necessary for success in the position.
Employers, Human Resource managers, and recruiters utilize job descriptions and job specifications during the recruitment process to attract suitable job candidates for a vacant position. In this article, we will explore this topic in further detail. We will cover:
- What is a job description?
- What is a job specification?
- Job specification and job description similarities
- Job specification and job description differences
What is a Job Description?
A job description is a concise summary that outlines the duties, operations, and responsibilities associated with a particular role within an organization. Typically, an HR Manager conducts a job analysis process, often with input from the job holder, to establish the job duties and create a clear job description statement.
Job descriptions are a crucial element in the hiring process as they inform potential candidates about the working environment, job performance standards, and responsibilities involved with the position. By providing comprehensive information, recruiters are better equipped to attract the most suitable candidates, and the points listed in the job description are typically used as a basis for interview questions.
For job seekers, a job description and summary can help them evaluate if their interests, preferences, and career goals align with the position. It provides insight into the company's expectations and allows them to compare the components of the job with those of other roles.
Components of a job description may include the job title, purpose, job location, salary range, working hours, goals, objectives, duties, tasks, working environment, supervisory responsibilities, reporting authority, scope of work, and any exceptional circumstances.
What is a Job Specification?
What is a job specification? A job specification lists the specific qualities required to effectively perform a specific job. The job specification helps outlines the eligibility criteria for the role, encompassing factors such as educational qualifications, emotional attributes, work experience, and skills. Utilizing a job specification enables recruiters to target qualified candidates for a specific job opening. Once a candidate is hired, the job specification is used to establish performance standards and targets for the role and identify any necessary training requirements.
Job seekers can use the job specification to create their own person specification, highlighting how their capabilities align with the job duties and requirements listed in the job description. The employee specification also aids in identifying individual training needs. Existing employees can compare the requirements of other roles within the organization to assess if they have the necessary skills for internal transfers. Likewise, employers can use the job specification to evaluate an employee's suitability for internal transfers.
Job Specification and Job Description Similarities
The similarities between a job specification and job description include:
- Both are used by Hiring Managers and Human Resources
- Both help a Human Resource Manager attract the most qualified candidates for a particular job role
Job Specification and Job Description Differences
A job description and job specification have distinct differences, which can be summarized as follows:
- A job description defines the purpose, tasks, and responsibilities associated with a specific job
- A job specification is a statement that outlines the necessary personality traits, skills, experience, and qualifications required for a job
Job Description and Job Specification FAQs
Here we tackle you questions surrounding job description and job specification purposes.
Job description on Quizlet refers to a written document that outlines the duties, responsibilities, and requirements of a particular job. Job specification, on the other hand, refers to the skills, qualifications, and characteristics required of an individual to perform the job successfully.
A job specification is a document that outlines the skills, qualifications, experience, and personal characteristics required of an individual to perform a particular job successfully. It provides a detailed description of the knowledge, skills, and abilities required for the job.
Job specification refers to a document that outlines the specific qualifications, experience, and skills required of an individual to perform a particular job. For example, a job specification for a software engineer may include requirements such as a degree in computer science, experience with programming languages, and strong problem-solving skills.
Both job description and job specification are important documents used by employers to ensure that they hire the right person for the job. They provide detailed information about the duties, responsibilities, and requirements of a particular job and help to ensure that the right candidate is selected for the position. Additionally, both documents are typically used in the hiring process and are considered essential for effective recruitment and selection.