There has been some talk on LinkedIn and other places that the Job Description is dead. Well, Facebook is supposed to be dead, too. Maybe it’s taking a long time to die. That is what is happening to JDs too, perhaps. They are taking a long time to die. Then again, perhaps it is just that some are adapting better than others. Take the JD for the Infantryman for the Australian Army, for example, which would be quite typical for any Infantryman around the globe:
The role of Infantry is to seek out and close with the enemy, to kill or capture him, to seize and hold ground and to repel attack, by day or night, regardless of season, weather or terrain.
Sounds simple enough. Look deeper and you realize that the statement encompasses a whole host of competencies, attitudes, skills and knowledge that will be necessary, not to mention a wide range of implied tasks. I think that JD is still good. That’s because the role of the Infantry hasn’t changed much in a few millennia, not that I know of.
I think rumours of the JD’s demise have been somewhat exaggerated. To be sure, many JDs probably need to be crafted better. That does not mean they are all dead. Some are definitely in Intensive Care, but not all. Take this one for Account Manager I found after a cursory search. It’s not perfect, but you can use it after you adapt it, can’t you?
Beware, too, of going to the other end of the spectrum, and of putting in so much detail and legalese, trying to cover all bases. Your recruiting efforts will grind to a halt.
Keep using JDs. Make sure they make sense to you and to others. After all, the Job Description is mainly used to spark interest and start a conversation, is it not? Who knows where that could lead?
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