[MUSIC] Job descriptions, they don't sound like the most exciting topic probably in this course, but nonetheless really important. And there's so many uses for them in the organization so that's the focus of this video. What are they, how are they used, and what's the impact? Let's get started. Let's begin with breaking down a job description. Okay, so let's get started here. And we're going to use this little tablet as a template for a job description. So let me start from the top here. So I'll put Job Description. And this is how it should typically look. Certainly some organizations might do it differently. But the many that I've seen seem to follow this same format. And here we would have the title of the job. And perhaps the date. Who the position reports to, not a name, but a title. And then also, who the position supervises. Okay. So that would be the top. And then, we move on to the essential functions. So the essential functions remember are the reason the job exists. And so these are the things that are critical. Whoever is in this position has to be able to do those things. And then you may put underneath the non-essential functions. These are things that the job does but they're not necessarily essential to the job. And so if we had to move those tasks to someone else or rework them somehow, perhaps we would be able to do that. And last area that I'm going to put a big bucket of things here is what's called the Job Specification. And that's typically is going to be your experience that's needed, knowledge, skills, ability. We'll talk about that in just a little bit. So the knowledge, skills and ability and we could also put in here, sorry, I forgot education could be in this category. And one other area, perhaps, would be physical working conditions. Sometimes that is maybe in it's own area but I am going to put it here. So physical working conditions. So that might be what's required from the individual such as walk, talk, see, hear, be able to reach, touch, feel, those kinds of things. And then also perhaps the kind of physical environment the person could be exposed to. So if it was a construction job, it may say that the position is, works at heights, is hot, dusty, whatever it is. So, that's your typical job description format here. But, I did want to stop for a second and talk about one area of the job specification I just discussed. It's important to distinguish the knowledge, skills, abilities and then other characteristics that are involved. And so knowledge is really the knowing part. Perhaps it's mathematical formulas, scientific principles. Skills would be something where you have a skill in data entry. You have a skill to be able to type 40 words per minute or 60 words per minute or whatever. Operate a motor vehicle. Being able to demonstrate a second language. Ability is your ability to perhaps have a mental capacity. I think of them more las constructs, like leadership, problem-solving, communication with others. Coaching abilities. And then in this other category, other characteristics. I'm actually going to cross that off because I don't really like the way that's phrased. I apologize. I would rather put here necessary things like having a CPA. Any sort of other requirement that's necessary for the job. The writer of the job description should gather all of the information from the job analysis. It should then be reviewed by people in the job and supervisors, to make sure the information is accurate and covers all the needed tasks. Once completed, job descriptions should be made available to those who will use them. Employees, supervisors, HR, business partners, and of course applicants for the job. As jobs change, so too should job descriptions. This is where it becomes important to periodically review job descriptions, especially those that appear to be outdated. Well, it's not always practical to do this annually, particularly in larger organizations with several different jobs. It's crucial that a system be put in place to prevent jobs from being lost in the mix. So it may make more sense for you to do your job descriptions in batches, particular groups of jobs where you update those on a rolling basis. So how job descriptions are used depends on the individuals using it. Let's dig into each of the three main groups here. Employees need copies of their job descriptions to know what's expected of them. Applicants need copies so they know if this is a job they want. Are they able to do the job? Are they interested in the job? Employees who plan to grow within the organization may want to see job descriptions of their next targeted job. Whether it be one within the job family or a new one altogether. This allows people to plan out the developments so they have the skills needed to land that new job. Managers use job descriptions to evaluate employee performance and to understand what training needs are necessary, to make promotional decisions. They use them for a number of reasons. It's a very important tool. So let's talk about a few of these. One, they can be used to evaluate employee performance. It becomes clear that an employee is failing to complete a task or do it correctly when it has been formally documented in a job description. It's also useful when an employee refuses, perhaps, to do a particular task, but it's listed in the job description as a requirement. Next they can be used for giving recognition to employees who go above and beyond the normal scope of the job. If you don't know what the normal scope of the job is, then perhaps it's hard to recognize what is a critical incident or what is a positive critical incident. The last one here is thinking about promotional decisions. By looking ahead at other job descriptions, managers can make better selection decisions when promoting their direct reports into more advanced jobs. Human resource professionals use job descriptions in the recruitment and hiring process. Because they need to understand, what is it that we're hiring for? It helps to develop employment advertisements and to use the right selection tools for hiring.