JOB DESCRIPTIONS - HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT



JOB DESCRIPTIONS

BY

SMART LEARNING WAY

CONTENTS 

  Introduction
  Definition
  Importance
  Content
  How to write job description?
  Purpose of job description
  Uses of job description
  Advantages
  Disadvantages
  Conclusion
  Bibliography




Introduction

      The data collected through job analysis provides the basis for preparing job description and job specifications. Job description is a written description of a job and the types of duties it includes. Since there is no standard format for job descriptions, they tend to vary in appearance and content from one organization to another.

        However, most job descriptions will contain at least three parts: the job title, a job identification section and a job duties section. If the job specifications are not prepared as a separate document, they are usually stated in the concluding section of the job description. Highlight in HRM 1 shows a job description for an HR employment assistant. 

   This sample job description includes both job duties and job specifications and should satisfy most of the job information needs of managers who must recruit, interview and orient a new employee.

     Job descriptions are of value to both the employees and employer. From the employees standpoint, job descriptions can be used to help them learn their job duties and remind them of the results they are expected to achieve.

     From the employer’s standpoint, written job descriptions can serve as a basis for minimizing the misunderstandings that occur between managers and their subordinates concerning job requirements. They also establish management’s right to take corrective action when the duties covered by the job description are not performed as required.

Definition

A job description typically is a narrative that identifies a job title, a brief summary of the job, a description of essential job tasks and duties, and all or some of the following elements:

What, where, when and how job tasks are done.

What equipment, machines or tools are used.

Minimum skills and qualifications  required to perform the job.

Supervision and direction for the position.

How the job interacts with customers, fellow workers, or others.

Job procedures related to the job.

Communications requirements.

Other information required to appropriately define the job. 

2.  A broad, general, and written statement of a specific job, based on the findings of a job analysis. It generally includes duties, purpose, responsibilities, scope, and working conditions of a job along with the job's title, and the name or designation of the person to whom the employee reports. Job description usually forms the basis of job specification.

IMPORTANCE

 All employees like to know what is expected of them and how they will be evaluated. Job descriptions can also be a great value to employers. Creating a job description often results in a thought process that helps determine how critical the job is, how this particular job relates to others and identify the characteristics needed by a new employee filling the role.

 A job description typically outlines the necessary skills, training and education needed by a potential employee. It will spell out duties and responsibilities of the job. Once a job description is prepared, it can serve a basis for interviewing candidates, orienting a new employee and finally in the evaluation of job performance. Using job descriptions is part of good management.

Descriptions of job titles appear in a variety of forms in the workplace. Recruitment ads, compensation surveys and other benchmarking tools, as well as corporate or departmental development plans all use some method of describing a job.

CONTENT

 Job Identification.
 Job Summary.
 Job Duties and Responsibilities.
 Working Conditions.
 Social Environment.
 Machines, Tools and Equipment.
 Supervision.
 Relation to other Jobs.

Job identification:

    Job identification & organizational position which includes job title, code number of the job, department or division where the job is located. This part of job description helps to identify and designate the job. 

Job summary:

    Job summary serves two important purpose. First, it provides a short definition which is useful as an additional identification information when a job title is not adequate. Second, it server a summary to orient the reader towards an understandings of detailed information which is follows. It gives the reader a “quick capsule explanation” of content of a job usually in one or two sentences.

Job duties and responsibilities:

 Job duties and responsibilities give a comprehensive listing of the duties together with some indication of the frequency of occurrence or percentage of time devoted to each major duty. It is regarded as the heart of job. 

Working condition:

    Working condition usually give us information about the environment in which a  job holder must work. These includes heat, cold, dust, noise level, moisture, fumes, etc. Nature of risk their possibility of occurrence are also given.

Social Environment:

    Size of work group and inter personal interactions required to perform the job are given. Training and development facilities may also be mentioned. 

Machines, tools and equipment:

    The names of major machines, tools and equipment materials used in the job are described.

Supervision:

    Under it is given the number of persons to be supervised along with their job titles and extent of supervision.

Relation to other jobs:

    The jobs immediately below & above are mentioned. It provides an idea of vertical work flow and channels of promotion. It also indicates to whom the job holder will report and who will report to him.

How to write job description

There is no standard format for writing job description. But most widely used formats contain the following sections:

 Job identification.
 Job summary.
 Responsibilities and duties.
 Accountabilities.
Job specifications.
Job identification

The job identification section of a job   description usually follows the job title.  It includes such items as follow:

 Job Title
 Job Code
 Plant/Department
 Division
 Immediate Supervisor (title) 

The most important element in this section  is the job title. A good Job title accomplishes the following objectives: 

It should tell, in a word or two, what the job consists of.
It should indicate the job’s specific-field-of activity, its relationship to that field, and its professional standing.
It should be as brief as possible, and if it consists of more than one word it should be in natural order (for example, "Computer Operator," not "Operator, Computer") so that it will be easy to use in written or spoken form.
It should indicate skill level or supervisory level, where valid distinctions exist.
It should be similar or identical to one of the titles the job has had in the past, so employees and supervisors won't have to learn a completely new vocabulary every time job descriptions are written or revised.

Job summary

   The second section of a good job description format is known as the "job summary." It is a brief narrative picture of the job that highlights its general characteristics. The job summary should provide enough information to differentiate the major functions and activities of the job from those of other jobs.
Since brevity, accuracy and objectivity are primary goals in writing the job summary, it is wise to follow these three basic rules: 

Start the job summary with an action word (verb).

Explain the job's requirements; in other words, tell what is done.

If necessary, explain the why or how of the job ? & its purpose. If it is necessary or helpful to do so, use an example.

Responsibilities & duties

        It is regarded as the heart of job description. It describes the duties performed along with frequency of each major duty. Responsibilities concerning custody of money, supervision and training of staff, etc are also described in this section.

Accountabilities

       Once job objectives have been made clear responsibilities and duties have been defined, the incumbent is accountable to his or her superior for success or failure in accomplishing these objectives. The section of “accountabilities” not only describes the end results achieved when job duties are performed satisfactorily, but also mentions specific standards for measuring performance. It is therefore particularly useful when preparing for performance appraisal. 

Job specifications

   As started earlier, the personal qualifications an individual must process in order to perform the duties and responsibilities contained in a job description are compiled in the job specification. Typically the job specification covers two areas:
The skill required to perform the job
The physical demands the job places on the employee performing it   
    Skills relevant to a job include education or experience , specialized training, personal traits or abilities and manual dexterities. The physical demands of a job refer to how much walking, standing, reaching, lifting or talking must be done on the job. The condition of the physical work environment and hazards employees may encounter are also among the physical demands of a job. Job specifications should also include interpersonal skills or specific behavioral attributes necessary for job success.

Purpose of job description

 The primary purpose of a job description is to identify the duties, essential functions and requirements of the position.
 A good job description can assess work flow  and eliminate duplication of effort and also help assist in the evaluation of the employees job performance.
It should be a statement of what duties and responsibilities the employee is expected to complete and a means for achieving them.
For understanding new assignments and working conditions.
For understanding and establishing training objectives and developmental goals / objects.
Assist in hiring and placing employees in positions for which they are best suited.

 Uses of job description

 Job description is helpful in the following areas of HRM :
 Job grading and classification.
 Placement of new employees on a job.
 Orientation of new employees towards basic duties and responsibilities.
 Promotions and transfers.
 Defining and outlining promotional steps
 Adjustments of grievances.
 Investigating accidents.
 Locating faulty work procedures and duplication of papers.
 Work measurement and work improvement.
 Defining the limits of authority.
 Health and fatigue studies.
 Developing performance standards.
 Establishing a common understanding of a job between management and workers.
 Determining jobs for occupational therapy.
 Time and motion studies.
 Employee counseling and vocational guidance.
 Maintaining, operating and adjusting machinery.
 It can be used for job evaluation, a wage and salary administration technique.
 It aids in a development of job of specifications, which are useful in planning recruitment, in training and in hiring people with required skills.

Advantages

 It enables us to compare potential candidates to it, helping with the selection process. 
Allows possible candidates o compare themselves with the job.
 Its legal requirement and allows candidates to know the relevant information needed about what the job involves and the responsibilities they will have.
Enables us to draw up a constructive job advert, which had relevant information on it and allowed us to obtain candidates who could the necessary tasks. 

Disadvantages

 You can lose an ideal candidate for another type of job within the job.
They cant carry out a particular task then the job description.
 They can limit the scope of activities of the jobholder, reducing organizational flexibility.

Conclusion

     A job description is a list of the general tasks, or functions, and responsibilities of position. Typically, it also includes to whom the position reports, specifications needed by the person in the job. A job description is usually developed by conducting a job analysis, which includes examining the tasks and sequences of tasks necessary to perform the job.

Bibliography

1.)    Human Resource Management :
           By - Gary Dessler
2.)    Human Resource & Personal Management:
                          By - K. Ashwathapa
3.)    Human Resource Management :
                           By – Dr. Tripathi


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