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PostSubject: JOB DESCRIPTION   Fri Jan 18, 2008 11:58 pm

You are here: About>Business & Finance>Human Resources> HR Management: FAQs/Basics> Job Descriptions> Job Descriptions - How to Develop a Job Description

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How to Develop a Job Description
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Find Sample Job Descriptions.

The process of developing a job description helps you articulate the most important outcomes you need from an employee performing a particular job. A job description is also a communication tool that tells coworkers where their job leaves off and the job of another starts.

A well-written job description tells an employee where their job fits within the overall department and the overall company. Well-written job descriptions help employees from other departments, who must work with the person hired, understand the boundaries of the person's responsibilities. Finally, the job description is an integral piece of the performance development planning process.

Your goal in hiring is to find the brightest, most competent, flexible, reliable, multifaceted employees you can find.

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A job description, if not viewed as a straight jacket, helps your successful recruiting in several ways. A job description:
causes the manager of the position and any other employees already performing the job to agree on the responsibilities and scope of the position,
helps Human Resources know the knowledge, skills, education, experience, and capabilities you seek in your new employee, so an effective recruiting plan is formulated,
informs candidates about the duties and responsibilities of the position for which they are applying,
informs employees who are assisting with the interview process about the questions to ask candidates and what you seek in the new employee, and
may protect you legally when you can demonstrate why the candidate selected for a position was your most qualified and culturally suited applicant.
Steps in Developing a Job Description
Gather the appropriate people for the task. Developing a job description is led by the manager to whom the position will report, but other employees who are performing similar jobs can contribute to the job description. Additionally, if the position is new and will relieve current employees of work load, they should be part of the discussion. A first position? The manager or company owner can develop the job description on his or her own.

Perform a job analysis. You need as much data as possible to put together a job description. The job analysis may include:
the job responsibilities of current employees,
Internet research and sample job descriptions online or offline highlighting similar jobs,
an analysis of the work duties, tasks, and responsibilities that need to be accomplished by the employee filling the position,
research and sharing with other companies that have similar jobs, and
articulation of the most important outcomes or contributions needed from the position.
The more information you can gather, the easier the actual writing of the job description will be.

Write the job description. Your company may have a format for job descriptions so check with Human Resources. Often, however, all Human Resources expects is a list of the responsibilities and they prefer to develop the final format congruent with job descriptions across the company.

These are the normal components of the job description:
Overall position description with general areas of responsibility listed,
Essential functions of the job described with a couple of examples of each,
Required knowledge, skills, and abilities,
Required education and experience,
A description of the physical demands, and
A description of the work environment.
Your company and your process may vary, but these components give the employee clear direction.

Review the job description periodically to make sure it acurately reflects what the employee is doing and your expectations of results from the employee.

Use the job description as a basis for the employee development plan (PDP) An employee's job description is integral in the development of his or her quarterly employee development plan.
An effective job description establishes a base so that an employee can clearly understand what they need to develop personally, and contribute within your organization. The well-written job description provides employees with a compass and clear direction.
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