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Our Solutions in Job Descriptions and Job Evaluation

Article Written by John Berry on 9th May 2017. Reading time: 2 minutes

Jobs are designed considering the needs of the firm. Ideally job design should be done in response to modelling of the operating model and the functions needed. Each job must have purpose and contribute to the intended business outcomes. All changes in the business should consider the impact on jobs and managers should re-design those jobs to suit. Jobs motivate. Bad job design will fail to enable that motivation.

Let’s get your staff motivated through the jobs they do! Here are some issues that TimelessTime will consider with you.

Job Descriptions

Job descriptions are probably the most important employment-related documents in a firm. A job description underpins the employment contract by setting out what management want from an employee. They therefore form the basis of all employer-employee interaction leading on to appraisal, development, pay and succession discussions.

Job Evaluation

Different jobs have different contribution to turnover, profit, safety and quality. Some jobs are ‘worth’ more than others. But making decisions about relative value is complex. Formal job evaluation aims to make these decisions objectively. As a result job evaluation is used to set remuneration. Pay benchmarking then allows a link from the firm’s jobs to those in the labour market.

Act Now

There comes a time when a manager simply must engage in formal job design, job descriptions and job evaluation. Failure to do so risks disharmony in the organisation, low morale and ultimately low staff retention. Big progress can be made with small steps. Sound management can be simply achieved. But action is essential.

It’s simple really. Get the wrong person in the wrong job and they’ll never succeed.

And righting the wrong, or avoiding it in the first place, starts with job design.

There’s nothing God-given in a job. Jobs are constructed by managers. They can be constructed well. Or they can be constructed badly. A well-constructed job is one that maximises the jobholder’s motivation.

For optimum motivation jobs should give responsibility. The job should demand the use of various skills and allow the jobholder identify with the work. The work should have some significance. The jobholder should see the fruits of his or her labours and how those labours benefit the business. Ultimately, the jobholder should be able to derive meaningfulness from the job. Jobs are designed by operational modelling; by determining all the functions in the firm and grouping various functions into jobs.

Describing Jobs

The only real way to write a job description is to model the job done, either by adding together all the job functions from operational modelling or by modelling the job from data provided by those who understand how to do the job. Either way, it’s not a simple activity. Get it right and the document helps the manager in his or her discussions with employees. Get it right and it helps in evaluation and setting salary and other reward. Get it wrong and there’s little point in having the job description at all.

Job descriptions help at every stage of management: recruitment, selection, staff development, succession planning, performance appraisal, performance management, disciplinary, dismissal, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions and liquidation. They are probably the most important documents in the HR and OD bundle.

Evaluating Jobs

Every manager engages in job evaluation. Managers do benchmark pay. It’s just that few do it formally.

Most simply pay what they perceive to be the market rate or what the employee demands.
In firms with only a few staff, there are often few issues with this approach and problems can easily be fixed.

As the firm grows, anomalies in pay multiply and bad feeling arises between staff and between staff and managers. The only solution is to objectively evaluate all jobs and link pay to that evaluation.

Job evaluation need not be complicated or time consuming. The methods used can be tailored to the needs of the firm.


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