A Breath of Fresh Air

By, Nibu Thomas

Hiring managers might agree with me on this one. Vehemently. A well written resume is a breath of fresh air. But before we get to the resume, let’s step back for a moment and look at it from the candidate’s point of view. Isn’t he or she also looking for a breath of fresh air? What have you done to make the JD attractive enough for a response from the best candidates? Does your JD stand out from among the many open positions? Candidates are looking to work with others who are smarter than them. Or at least as smart as them. Of course, it has to work both ways.

Thus the JD has to convey the right expectations and skills. But it also has to catch the right candidate’s attention, without in any way intimidating them. So list (specifically) what is it that makes someone a good writer in your organization. And in your attempts to do so, whoever said you can’t get very creative in this particular area of work, will have something special coming their way.

So how do you create one? I have just one tip for those who like the idea. Don’t set out to write a JD. Set out to create an invitation. Given below, is an example on how to spice up a Tech writing JD. It doesn’t have to be boring. It doesn’t have to be very detailed. It does exactly what the resume does, but in the other direction. It catches a candidate’s attention and gets you a response.

You might not be able to attract every eligible candidate. But  even if the candidate is not interested in the position, you can be sure that you’ve just made someone smile. 🙂 Here goes…

XYZ is looking to hire a technical writer to join its awesome team in Bangalore. We have just 12 commandments that you need to have kept and kept well, for at least 4 years. Well, give or take a couple. (Years and commandments). But let’s just start with a dozen.

Before Moses gets annoyed. Again.

  1. Thou shalt write accurate, concise, readable content for web applications
  2. Thou shalt scope writing projects and be responsible for managing own priorities, schedule and deadlines
  3. Thou shalt follow the established style guide to ensure high editorial standards
  4. Thou shalt demonstrate the ability to quickly grasp complex technical concepts and translate them into simple usable content
  5. Thou shalt ensure on time/quality delivery of multiple projects – concurrently
  6. Thou shalt be a graduate/post graduate in English or Journalism Or Thou shall have Technical Writing Certification from a reputed organization
  7. Thou shalt have experience developing WBT and CBT lesson plans/training
  8. Thou shalt have experience in web production and project management
  9. Thou shalt be familiar with the Supply Chain domain and terminologies
  10. Thou shalt be an expert at the Microsoft Office Suite, Adobe Acrobat, Captivate and Wiki technologies
  11. Thou shalt always question status quo and improve processes, attitudes, knowledge and application, not limited just to writing
  12. Thou shalt be thick skinned enough not to get annoyed by review comments 🙂

XYZ prides itself at being a great place to work (and play!). If you are really good, (trust me, we’ll know), you will join a fun team that knows how to work hard and play harder. Send me your profile even if you’ve only kept 10 of these commandments, faithfully.
But remember, number 12 is non-negotiable. 🙂
If you just heard a knock, it’s not the door. It’s your window to a big opportunity.
(Hint: That was your squirm moment 🙂
P.S. If you are looking for the official JD, it’s available on our website. And it’s not going to say anything different. But if you liked this one better, congratulations, you already have an edge!
(Based on a true story!)

About the Author

Nibu works with GT Nexus (an Infor Company) as Manager – Information Development. He’s donned several hats in over 20 years of work experience. In his spare time, he writes JDs :). He blogs occasionally at This Too Shall Pass and also writes articles on Linkedin. He’s passionate about ideas, solutions, and humor.

His interests are still unprintable.


  1. “Shalt” is the correct and idiomatic modal verb used with “Thou”. If you must stick to using the archaic pronoun Thou, why eschew the correct modal verb it takes? The commandments with “shall” in this article read very awkward.

    On all other fronts, nice article.

  2. That’s probably why I couldn’t get along with Shakespear. And the King James edition of the Bible.
    I’ve updated the commandments. (Ha! How many people would have had the opportunity to do this one?!)
    I hope thou art happy 🙂

    P.S Is Lucifer your real name? Or will I need to pray for forgiveness. For listening to the ‘morning star’ 😀

  3. Thank you for updating the post. My good-friend-once-but-now-a-foe Moses is pleased.

    Lucifer is my real name, yes. And I have been using “shalt” with “Thou” for over five thousand years now. So much for experience.

    Please feel free to pray to the One who does not listen to me anymore.

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