GUIDE FOR CREATING A ‘FUNCTIONAL’ JOB DESCRIPTION

February 1st, 2013Hire Great People, HR Tips

A functional job description is one of the best tools for finding the right person for job. It is not just form or a task; it’s an ongoing process that should reflect the structure, tasks, accountabilities, skills and requirements of the position. It lays the foundation for recruitment, selection performance management, work flow and future promotion. A functional job description also comes into play if there are any future issues that come into question.

 

ASSESSMENT

  • The first step is to work out your overall operational needs related to the role, including future needs
  • Review your current processes and business practices to ensure that the job description reflects the level of efficiency and quality you require
  • Review the previous job description for the position. Has it changed over time?
  • It is a good idea to talk with the current holder of the position, this is usually the best resource for finding out specific information about the position, that may not be reflected in the previous description

 

WHAT QUESTIONS TO ASK

  • What are the responsibilities:
    • For communication (5 W’s + H)
    • For planning and organizing
    • For management of information, administration or support
    • For monitoring or reporting (of what, to whom)
  • What level of decision-making does this position require?
  • How much authority is exercised?
  • Who are the customers (internal / external)?

 

WHAT YOU NEED IN A FUNCTIONAL JOB DESCRIPTION

  • Position Summary
    • What is the purpose of the position, what is the business need?
  • Supervision / Direction
    • Who does this position report to / who reports to this position?
    • What is the level of independence?
    • What is the level of decision-making?
  • Typical Duties
    • What are the essential tasks/responsibilities (using action verbs will help you be specific)
    • What are the percentages (equal to 100%) of time spent on specific duties?
    • What are the competencies required to perform the tasks (observable behavior)?
    • Is this position responsible for supervising others? If so, who, how many?
  • Machines / Equipment / Technical skill sets
    • Equipment (Office, technical, scientific, other), hardware, software used
  • Requirement
    • What are the MINIMUM job requirements, preferred qualifications (Education, licenses, certificates, physical requirements, work days/hours)

 

Not only will the above assist you in finding the right person for the job, but will be advantageous to your business and customers/ clients.

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