How to Figure Out Project Requirements for Your Job Post

Creating clear project requirements is key to a successful job post and project outcome. There are a number of different approaches that help you get the information you need to get your job post into circulation. Here are five ideas for you to consider.

Get ideas from other job posts

One of the most efficient ways to pull a project description together is to start with a template and customize as needed. No two projects are alike, but there’s a lot you can learn by analyzing similar projects from other companies. This is who you’re competing with for attention from top freelancers! So how do they stack up?

  • Consider the title: How do other teams capture their goal and/or the skills required in the title?
  • How clear are the description of the project and its deliverables?
  • How thoughtful and detailed is the overview of the skills, expertise, and qualifications needed?
  • What can you improve upon?

Glean what you can from the ones that stand out to make yours even stronger.

Lean on other teams

Just because you aren’t a subject matter expert doesn’t mean you don’t have easy access to one. Sometimes, it’s just a matter of reaching out to someone on another team.

When finding a freelancer becomes a group effort, you gain the benefit of other people’s knowledge and perspective. For example, maybe another team has the skills you need but no bandwidth to support your project. They may be able to help you determine the specs and skills you should look for.

Start with a project manager

If you have a clear vision in mind but are fuzzy on the details, you may not have the information needed to put together an effective job post. Instead, you may want to pivot in a different direction by engaging a project manager as your first step.

“It’s the client’s job to articulate their vision for a project; it’s the project manager’s job to bring that vision to life.”
Christy Armitage, Project Management Consultant

Project managers are adept at defining project requirements and can be a particularly valuable asset if you have an ambitious project with a lot of complexities. Their role is to plan and execute, and they’ll translate your vision into actionable sub-parts with a realistic schedule, budget, and resources. As they define the specific deliverables needed to bring your project to life, as well as the skills and resources needed, you can use that information to find the additional freelance talent needed.

Use a paid test project to define the project scope

Another tactic to help you define the scope of a project? Some hiring managers use a small initial paid project as a final step in the proposal process, a chance to see the freelancers they’ve shortlisted in action. And it’s an effective way for you to see your challenge through multiple perspectives, consider different approaches, and differentiate the doers from the tellers.

Be careful not to overplan before you start your search. Instead of a fully fleshed out project description, focus on your vision or the problem you’re trying to solve as well as the context, details, and your expectations. Then explain that the scope of the project will be the key deliverable for this first phase.

To help this part of the process go as smoothly as possible, take time to prep your test project ahead of time:

  • Will they need access to any internal systems?
  • What information or resources will they need access to>?
  • Are there any milestones you can put in place so you can get progress updated?

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