Understanding job requirements

In this exclusive careers article from Go Zambia Jobs we explain what is meant by the term job requirements, how you can identify job requirements and why understanding ALL job requirements is vital.

What are job requirements?

Job requirements are the skills, experience and qualifications requested by employers from applicants. Job requirements can include:

  • Skill requirements (e.g. a particular skill, for example report writing, financial analysis);
  • Academic requirements (e.g. Grade 12 school certificate, diploma, degree and/or professional qualifications);
  • Knowledge requirements (e.g. subject, industry, function, task, environment);
  • Experience requirements (e.g. # of years experience in a particular job, sector or level).
  • Personality traits (e.g. results-orientated, friendly, sober, mature)

Where can you find the job requirements?

Most of the time employers will provide a list of job requirements in the job advertisement. If the job requirements are not listed in clear sections (as above) make your own list of all the requirements provided by the employer.

Why is understanding ALL job requirements so important?

Understanding ALL job requirements is vital to ensure that you 1) apply for the right types of jobs and 2) are able to maximise the scores given to your applications.

Firstly, you have a limited amount of time to apply for jobs. Applying for the wrong types of jobs (jobs were you do not meet most of the requirements) limits the amount of time you can apply to applications were you do meet most of the requirements. By better understanding the job requirements you can focus your time and efforts to maximise your chances of successful applications. Find out more at: How long does it take to write a good job application?

Secondly, it is important to remember that employers will often score candidates against the criteria contained in the job advertisement with the candidates with the highest scores invited to interview or offered the job. The scoresheet used by the employer often provides marks for each requirement met in an application (similar to marking a school test or exam paper). The aim therefore is to amend your CV or application to match all or most of the job requirements listed in the job advertisement. If you do not fully understand the job requirements you will be limiting the score your application could achieve and reducing your chances of securing employment.

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Further Information

To find more careers articles visit: Careers Advice

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