The Art of Job Design – Connecting Business Needs with Candidate Desires

You have to hire the right person, but how?

The question is simple but the answer can be complex. I could tell you A+B=great employee, but hiring isn't that kind of equation. There are variables and needs to be met on both sides of the table, which is summed up as Job Design.

Job Design sounds fancy but is quite straightforward. It just means matching up what a business needs with what potential candidates want. Make your hiring more successful by creating a mutually beneficial relationship.

Go Back To The Start

Start at the beginning and ask yourself these questions:

Why was the job or opening created? Looking at the big picture, what achievements need to be met and what are the bare minimum acceptable results? On the flip side, what type of success will make your heart leap out of your chest?

Here's An Example of using Job Design

Say it's a Territory Sales Manager position, covering 5 states selling windows and doors. Your previous employee wasn't a hunter and you've lost ground. Additionally, they were not great at follow-through and you have some angry clients.

In order to be successful, you need to fix issues with your customers, gain back lost market share and grow sales 10% in 12 months.

Now you have 3 clear business goals:

  1. Earn your customers' respect and confidence again
  2. Regain lost market Share
  3. Find + Grow new customers to grow sales by 10%


You need a proven sales performer with a similar product base and territory, who has regained and built customer trust and hunted for new business.

Great, now you have a hyper-focused business need. Now what?

How do you attract your ideal hires?

By understanding the needs and wants of your ideal hire and letting them see that they can have those things at your company, in this role.   

For this example, there are some easy assumptions to make about highly successful, skilled and knowledgeable territory managers.

  • They crave freedom and independence – no micro-management
  • A-players expect to be compensated well for their accomplishments
  • They appreciate any support you give them so they can focus on selling, not data entry
  • They need your company to keep up with their abilities – they will want to know your operations and customer service can keep up with the sales they can drive

Now put it all together!  The qualities you want + what your ideal hires want = how to position the role in your job posting.

Make It Impossible To Ignore

Take what you want and what they need and put it together into a job ad they cannot ignore.

Think about what is compelling to a top performer. What kind of words would they use? Then craft sentences and phrases to excite them about the role. What about your job ad, the role, and the future opportunities is going to make them decide to apply?

Combine what you need with what they want and use selling points in your job ad as the icing on top. Engage and excite your most desirable potential employees and attract them using Job Design.



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