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Key Points for Writing a Job Order

Job Orders
The job order is a tool used to recruit qualified applicants for your existing job opening(s). A job order in initiates the employment exchange process to facilitate an automated job match between your job opening and qualified applicants. As you navigate through the automated database to create your job order, you can click on the Help mouse to get assistance and answers to you questions.

  • A job order is not to be used to create lists or pools of qualified applicants for future use and/or job openings.
  • A job opening is a single job opportunity and only one job should be listed per job order. If you have two identical jobs to be filled you may recruit for two positions on one job order.
  • Information is to be entered in appropriate, specific designated data fields. If information is duplicated in more than one field or entered incorrectly, it can adversely impact the results of your search for qualified applicants.
  • Information should be complete, current, accurate, job-related and considered as minimum qualifications and requirements necessary to perform the job for which you are recruiting.
  • Job Order information should include:
    • Your specific job title and a system job title to identify and match qualified applicant(s) with your job opening. Your job title and the system job title do not have to be the same.
    • Description, tasks, duties and responsibilities;
    • Job-related qualifications considered as minimum qualifications needed to perform the job;
    • Job-related requirements considered as minimum requirements needed to perform the job; and
    • Any special skills, and/or tools and equipment needed to perform the job.

Job orders are retained in an active status while they are being processed. Once the job order has been closed it will be retained in the automated database system for one year from the date of closure.

Job Description
A job description is a statement describing your job opening. Language used to describe a job should be objective, tangible and quantitative. If you use acronyms and/or abbreviations they need to be universally understood.

  • Avoid the use of subjective terms and/or personality traits, such as honesty, reliability, maturity, etc. These characteristics are neither literal nor universally quantifiable. As an employer you have the right to pre-screen applicants for personality traits and this pre-screening could be part of your in-person interview process.
  • Documenting and using subjective comments and/or listing personality traits in your job order can pose a potential for legal ramifications. Legal ramifications could result if job requirements cannot be shown to be necessary to perform the job.
  • For help in writing job descriptions visit

Job Qualifications
Job qualifications must be job-specific, necessary and/or essential for the performance of the job for which you are recruiting.

  • A requirement or qualification that is not job specific/related or necessary to perform the job may be viewed as a bias constituting a discriminatory employment practice. If you include a job requirement or qualification that does not appear to be job-related and would otherwise be considered discriminatory, you can assert the existence of a Bona Fide Occupational Qualification (BFOQ).
    • A BFOQ is a specific or unique qualification required of the worker and necessary in order to perform the job and the absence of the qualification impacts the normal operations of your business, organization or institution.
    • A BFOQ may be based on age, disability, gender, race, religion or a unique job specific qualification.
    • Each individual BFOQ must be authenticated and your justification for asserting the BFOQ must be documented to support your claim to be a lawful employment practice.
    • If you assert a BFOQ, it is to be documented as a qualification in your internal/company job description for the position. The inclusion of this information as part of the job description demonstrates the existence and validity of the BFOQ.

IWD will accept a job order from an employer who does not have an existing job description. However, the BFOQ being requested by the employer will not be included as part of the job order nor used for screening and matching purposes.

Job Requirements
Job requirements must be job-specific, necessary and/or essential for the performance of the job for which you are recruiting.

  • Justification documentation may be warranted in a situation where you have requested a specific requirement(s), such as Degree, Lifting Capacity, and/or Legal Minimum Age on the job order and it is not clear why it’s required or how it relates to the job for which you are placing the job order.
  • Jobs do exist in the workforce for which a requirement, such as degree, high school diploma, lifting a specific weight, and/or being a specific age would be considered a legitimate occupational qualification.

Employer Notes
The job order includes a text field in which you may enter notes or reminders pertaining to the job order. Information entered in this field cannot be accessed electronically or viewed by job seekers. This information is not protected under the Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA) if requested in a legal proceeding.

Searching for qualified applicants/seekers.
When conducting a search qualified applicants will be identified and selected based on your qualifications and requirements. Identifying qualified applicants will not be impacted by a difference between your job title and the system job title.

To preserve confidentiality of information, you will only be able to access records and resumes for seekers meeting your job order qualifications and requirements.

Employment Related Laws & Discrimination
Federal and State employment discrimination laws have been enacted and are directed toward equitable and fair labor practices and workplace standards to prevent unlawful and discriminatory employment practices. Provided below are a few employment related websites for additional information about employment/labor laws and practices.

Iowa Workforce Department
Workforce Services Division –

Iowa Jobs
Iowa’s Job Connection
Department of Labor (DOL) – Employment laws, statutes, and regulations
Department of Labor Employment and Training - Tax credits and other hiring incentives, how to find and train employees, assistance with plant closures and downsizing, legislation text, and ETA grants and contracts.