Analyzing a Job Description

Next you need to analyze the job description in a similar way.

Keep in mind, however, that job descriptions are often very general, describing more than one position.

Any additional knowledge you may have or surmise about the position is also helpful in this exercise.

As we did before, identify the key skills and knowledge sets in the following job description.

The successful candidate will possess several years experience managing vendors and creating sourcing strategy and policies. This position will supervise a staff of 4 people, manage project budgets in excess of $12 million, and concurrently manage up to 12 projects. Coordination of projects in a multifunctional team environment is important. Knowledge of SAP or other ERP systems is desirable. This position also consults with aerospace clients on systems needs-determination and negotiates contracts. Assignment: Using the same Microsft Word document you opened earlier, you may do this exercise for a position of your choosing.

You may find a sample job description on any major Internet job board, like HotJobs.com, Monster.com, or CareerBuilder.com. Just keyword search for “MBA” in the funcational area (finance, marketing, etc.) of your choosing.

This will be helpful in constructing a cover letter for the mock interview process, part of your Business Communications class at The Broad School.

Skills

  • Vendor management
  • Strategic Planning
  • Sourcing Strategy
  • Negotiation
  • Supervision
  • Budgeting
  • Project Management
  • Teamwork
  • Consulting
  • Needs determination
  • Business-to-business relationships

Knowledge

  • ERP Systems
  • Aerospace Industry
  • Multifunctional Coordination
  • Customer Service

Finding the Matches – From the Two Lists Just Created

From the Resume What They Have In Common From the Job Description
Skills
Strategic planning
Budgeting
Negotiation
Consulting
Supervision
Marketing
Business-to-business relationships
Business-to-consumer relationshipsKnowledge
Technology
Organizational Design
Position Creation
Customer Service
Aerospace Industry
Multifunctional
Skills
Strategic Planning
Budgeting
Negotiation
Consulting
Supervision
Business-to-Business relationshipsKnowledge
Technology
Aerospace
Multifunctional
Customer Service
Skills
Vendor management
Strategic Planning
Sourcing Strategy
Negotiation
Supervision
Budgeting
Project Management
Teamwork
Consulting
Business-to-Business relationshipsKnowledge
ERP Systems
Aerospace Industry
Multifunctional Knowledge
Customer Service

Prioritizing the Matches

In CommonSkills
Strategic Planning
Budgeting
Negotiation
Consulting
Supervision
Business-to-Business relationships

Knowledge
Technology
Aerospace
Multifunctional
Customer Service

Including all ten items at right in a cover letter is too much.

You want to focus on the top 3 to 5, emphasizing skills over knowledge.

So, you need to prioritize them based on your judgment of what the job requires and your relative strengths in each area.

A sample prioritization is:

  • Strategic Planning
  • Consulting
  • Aerospace
  • Negotiation

Assignment: By now you have completed both an analysis of your resume and a sample job for the mock interview process. Take a moment to find the common knowledge and skills between the two and prioritize them.