Job Requisition (Req)

Shalie Reich
Shalie Reich

Table of Contents

A manager comes to you and says they need to hire a new employee. Where do you start? The hiring manager can walk you through the need for the position, but is that enough to justify the role? Job requisition to the rescue! Read on to find out the differences between a job requisition, job description, and job posting, and how this item can assist your HR department on so many levels.

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What Is a Job Requisition?

Think of a job requisition as a request. You’re asking for the internal approval of a new position. This document is used by the individual making the request—typically the hiring manager—to formally ask if they can hire for a new position or fill a vacancy. Typically, a job requisition is sent to HR for approval and then to the higher-ups for final approval. A job requisition is a formalized way of making a case for why the position is needed and what the position will entail and is a useful tool in any organization.

Job Requisition vs Job Posting vs Job Description

The job requisition is an internal process of creating, describing, and approving a new position or back-filling an old one. It includes a job description, which is a very detailed portrayal of what the position will accomplish. HR takes both of those internal documents and creates an external job posting, which advertises the duties, responsibilities, and qualifications to potential candidates.

Why Is a Job Requisition Important?

Your organization may have a different process when it comes to the life cycle of a job requisition to job description to job posting, but let’s take a moment to see why the job requisition is the most important step.

  • Accuracy. A job requisition takes the guesswork out of compiling a job description, therefore creating a more comprehensive and enticing job posting. The job requisition details the requirements of the job so clearly that they are carried through to the description and the job posting accurately. This clarity means the final hire will fit the role and be set up for success. With an accurate job requisition, the hiring manager ensures they are not missing any essential skills for this role.
  • Metric. Utilizing a job requisition provides your organization with metrics such as how many positions were advertised vs how many were filled, even down to the amount of staff time required to attract qualified applicants for those hard-to-fill roles. This information helps the HR department justify hiring additional recruiters or ramping up hiring-manager training to create higher-quality job requisitions. Either way, the job requisition is a simple piece of paper that helps to quantify HR decisions.
  • Documentation. As an HR professional, the word “audit” is a familiar term, so keeping accurate documentation is critical. Job requisitions help in reviewing and optimizing your hiring process. They protect your organization with regard to fair employment laws or nondiscrimination in the workplace, as the paper trail for the job posting leads back to the company need displayed in the job requisition. Language in a job posting such as “recent college grads wanted” or “retired veterans apply here,” can be seen as discriminatory. Adding the job requisition process prior to the job posting could protect your organization during these audits by establishing consistency in all job ads and creating a paper trail for the life cycle of hiring.

What Should Be in a Job Requisition?

Each job requisition should follow the same process. Let’s go over a few items that are beneficial to require in your company’s job requisitions.

Basic Information

When submitting the job requisition, be sure to include the recommended title you believe would be the best fit for the role. This title should align with your company hierarchy and should not deviate from the titles currently in place for similar positions. Clarify the department this role will report to (some may have a reporting structure to a team lead and then to a manager) and be sure to clarify how this position would report on a day-to-day basis. Include the name of the hiring manager and the date the manager is requesting the position be filled. Having this information in a job requisition helps track the status back to the hiring manager and provides metrics for the HR department on timelines to fill positions like this one.

Job Description

A detailed job description from the hiring manager should be provided with the job requisition. Once the position is approved, the hiring manager and HR may adjust the details prior to posting, but a description should be provided all the same. The hiring manager should detail the role and responsibilities they are looking for in a way that is easily understood inside and outside the organization, without using internal jargon. A quality job description within a job requisition can allow the approval process to proceed quickly and efficiently because the approval team can clearly see what is required from the role and why it is needed.

Budget

Those involved in the approval process will be intensely interested in the cost of hiring a new or backfilling an old position. Provide a budget to justify if this role requires more salary than in the past in order to attract better talent or because of the heightened job requirements. Budget transparency helps the approval process along as the team evaluates the company’s ability to approve this requisition.

Include the hours and salary rate of the position.  Although your organization may not publish salary data on your job postings, this is an internal document, and hours and salary information should always be included to best evaluate the need and benefits of the role.

Interview Process Outline

Lastly, the hiring manager should detail their desired interview process. For example, they may request HR do the first-round interviews to screen for more qualified candidates prior to involving the hiring manager. This will require more bandwidth from recruiters and needs to be evaluated in the approval process. The approval team could evaluate and approve the entire requisition, but then tweak the interview process, but in the end, having all of the hiring manager’s requests submitted together in the job requisition creates a clear picture of how this job posting will affect the entire team, and that’s imperative.

How to Write a Job Requisition

A thorough job requisition can be the difference between an approved or denied position. Be sure your organization prioritizes time spent on these. Let’s review the how-to’s.

Step 1: Include the Details

Don’t skimp on the details. You now know what should be in a job requisition, so be sure to include it all in much more detail than just the title, department, description, and salary. Focus on why you need to add someone new or backfill an old position. For instance, the approval team needs to know if you have an employee about to take leave or someone who is discussing retirement. Each of these details provides the approval team with all the information to make an executive decision.

Step 2: Focus on Value

Leave nothing out. Consider the job requisition to be a persuasive essay. Take the time to make a strong case for things like budget and how this role will be an asset in the long term. Explain current gaps in the skills or availability of your current team, how they will be filled by the position to be hired, and how the result will benefit the mission of the organization both internally and externally. For an added bonus, detail how this role could assist across other departments and lighten the load for the organization overall. Transparently explain why this position is not only necessary but valuable to the organization.

Step 3: Metrics

Now that you’ve provided details and persuaded the approval team, it’s important to ensure you have the numbers to back it up. Be sure your job requisition has quantifiable numbers that detail the difference this role will make to the company. Some organizations prefer a description of what this position will be required to accomplish at the 30-, 60-, and 90-day marks; others focus more on what they will accomplish in one year. Be sure to know your audience and tailor the job requisition accordingly, including metrics specific to your organization.

How HR Can Help

Lastly, there may be one final thing you can do in your HR role to ensure these job requisitions go smoothly. Create a process for all those writing a job requisition to utilize moving forward. This could be a process that is highlighted in your intake meeting, a template or form, or perhaps something you add to your hiring manager checklist. Maybe you spend time training your hiring managers on this skill. Whichever route is best for your organization, be sure that the process you select supports your organization’s culture and sets you up for success.

Questions You’ve Asked Us About Job Requisition

This truly depends on your organization. In some, the approval stops at HR, but others have boards or executives involved in the approval process. Often new positions require higher financial approval.
Practice makes perfect. The more time you spend writing job requisitions, the better you will become, so the time should decrease as you progress. Don’t focus on the time it takes; the attention to detail you put into writing one saves time during the approval process.
The hiring manager should write the requisition. You’ll have an advantage for approval if the individual writing the requisition is the one most familiar with the position and need. However, creating some sort of template for hiring managers to use will speed the process and result in more consistency.
Shalie Reich
Shalie Reich

Shalie has over 4 years of experience working in a variety of HR positions and organizations including: working as an HR department “of one”, working with a start-up based in Europe, to working in a fully established robust USA based HR department. Shalie has experience in multiple states and countries with all aspects of the HR spectrum. She has a passion to share her knowledge and experience to benefit the HR profession!

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