In an internal study at Hewlett Packard, women applied only for jobs for which they believed they met 100% of the criteria listed; while men in the study applied for the job if they believed they met 60% of the required criteria—that means while men are likely to apply when they meet most of the requirements you’ve listed, women are likely to review the required and preferred list and then only apply if they meet all of them.
Make your content meaningful—it is critical that your job description include only criteria that is truly important to job performance—every line you include wields a huge impact on the diversity of the individuals choosing to apply for that job.
Imagine Mary in this real life example. She reads your job description’s requirement for “3-5 years experience working in a service provider environment.” Only having 2.5 years experience and interpreting your requirement very literally, she hesitates to apply. Now Paul, also with just 2.5 years experience, applies for that job. Consider also the possibility that Mary who didn’t apply had a better overall resume than Paul who you are now interviewing—all because of a slightly narrowing choice made at the job description stage.