Job analysis

Job analysis
See also


Job analysis (or work analysis) - personnel activities aimed at identifying the goals, components and objectives of work, as well as the conditions for its effective execution[1]. The information obtained during the analysis is used for preparation of a job description and personal specifications. The content of the work contains the characteristics of the employee (such as knowledge, tolerances, practical skills, abilities etc.) and described through the specific functions and procedures required for its proper execution[2].

There are three approaches to this process[3]:

  • job-oriented,
  • work-oriented,
  • hybrid.

Characteristics that are relating with the content of the work (job-oriented) are mainly related to the technological aspects of the execution (responsibilities, duties, methods of work, etc.). However, the characteristics of the employee (work-oriented) are related to the human behavior required for the successful completion of assigned tasks. Hybrid approach it's a combination of a job- and work-oriented approaches.

Job analysis gives for HR manager or line manager the following opportunities[4]:

  • set or fix existent performance standards for each workplace,
  • build work plan and productivity assessment,
  • determine selection criteria,
  • build a system of incentives and benefits,
  • gives the informantion regarding job context, machines, tools, human behaviours, equipment, activities etc.

From the very beginning, it's necessary to determine for what will be used the information gathered during the analysis: for the evaluation of work for recruitment or to identify training needs. Before starting the job analysis, it is necessary to describe the relationship of work, determine the exact boundaries of the tasks and the number of autonomous works, responsibilities and duties that are part of each work. The results of the job analysis serve as a basis, which in future will help to plan the required professional characteristics, number of personnel, as well as select appropriate methods for evaluating activities and directions for further development[5].

Stages

The job analysis can be divided into three main stages[6]:

  1. Collection of the data.
  2. Processing and analysis of the information received.
  3. Job description and the development of documentation.

Ad. 1. The first stage consists of using such methods of collecting information as: observation, interviewing, questioning.

Ad. 2. The second stage consists from the processing and analysis of the information received. At this stage, the line manager and the HR manager discuss all the information received and analyze it. When processing the data, it is advisable to use statistical methods. In large companies, computer sociological programs are usually used to simplify the processing of large volumes of information.

Ad. 3. The third stage consists from the job description. A job description is a document that contains information about what kind of work the employee actually does, how he does it, and under what conditions the work is done. The analysis and job description are used in determining the need for hiring specialists, as well as determining the criteria (mandatory and desirable) for selecting candidates for a vacant position. This is a very laborious work, but such database will help in finding professionals and correctly build a training plan with a fair benefit system.

As a rule, the analysis process ends with the creation of a document - "job description"[7]. Accurate and clear job description is used when solving any issues regarding personnel management, such as: promotion, selection, disciplinary measures, training, etc.

Methods of job analysis

Usually it's recommended to use a combination of several different methods. The following methods are usually used in the analysis of works[8]:

Employee questionnaires are best suited for obtaining basic information. Questionnaires vary in form and purpose. In a narrative questionnaire containing open paragraphs, you need to write from one to several paragraphs, indicating different characteristics of the work. This type of questionnaire allows employees to express their own opinions, but they often lack clarity and clarity of expressions. Standardized questionnaires require the respondent to note the relevant features of the work and related responsibilities. These forms, due to the lower freedom of choice, give a more strict and clear description of the position. For a number of jobs usually performed in the public service, ready-made standardized questionnaires already exist, which saves time in analyzing and interpreting the results[9].

Individual interviews and job evaluation are made directly on the spot. Usually, both the employee and the employer are interviewed. Obtaining information from different sources is very necessary. An alternative to an individual interview can be a group interview - a method particularly useful when analyzing a large number of jobs in the same profession. However, it should be considered that a group survey is more complicated and often requires the simultaneous work of two specialists[10].

Along with individual and group surveys, additional methods are often used in the analysis. This can be a collection of employee records. The application of this method is advisable in situations where the work is not monotonous and regularly requires the use of various skills, abilities and knowledge. Usually, before starting such a written survey, the specialist conducts a conversation with the employees, and at the end - makes a review[11]. Analysts are those who are directly familiar with the work, but are neither an employee of the organization, nor a leader. They should have an idea which skills, abilities and knowledge are required for ideal conditions, regardless of who actually occupies the position, and they may be asked to formulate, clarify or confirm tasks performed by employees. Based on the extensive information obtained as a result of careful and systematic analysis, the analyst can prepare a description of the main functions and responsibilities for each position, as well as the necessary skills of the employee[12].

Footnotes

  1. Caldwell C. (2018) p. 2-3
  2. Amos, T., Ristow, A. & Ristow, L. (2004), p. 136
  3. Foster G., Gaddis B., Hogan J. (2009), p. 3
  4. Randhawa G. (2007), p. 41-42
  5. Dessler G. (2003), p. 131
  6. Goyal N. (2010) p. 136
  7. Palmer Royer K. (2009), p. 3
  8. Dessler G. (2003), p. 110
  9. Dessler G. (2003), p. 113-114
  10. Dessler G. (2003), p. 110-113
  11. Dessler G. (2003), p. 114
  12. Foster G., Gaddis B., Hogan J. (2009), p. 3

References

Author: Andrii Didukh