Job Analysis – A Brief
Job analysis is a term used to describe the process of defining jobs. It is required to ascertain the fundamental needs of the job performed in an organization. The results of the job Analysis assist in hiring the appropriate talent for the right job.
The Job data compiled from the Analysis provides competitive compensation levels, creates criteria for measuring employee performance, and ensures an organization's smooth running.
OPM (United States Office of Personnel Management) describes job analysis as “a systematic procedure for gathering, documenting, and analyzing information about the content, context, and requirements of the job.
In this Job Analysis segment, we’ll describe, what is job analysis meaning in HRM, its definition given by prominent experts & authors, and will describe the job analysis process & steps, shall detail about how to conduct Job Analysis in HRM? The Job Analysis methods Steps & tools involve in it and finally purpose, Benefits, and importance of Job Analysis in Human Resource Management.
What is Job Analysis?
“Job analysis is a systematic approach to determine what a person actually does in his or her job”. A job analysis is a detailed investigation, study, and documenting of a specific job's responsibilities, duties, skills, accountabilities, work environment, and ability requirements. It also requires determining the proportional importance of a job's tasks, commitments, and physical and emotional abilities. All of these factors determine what a job entails and what qualities an individual must possess in order to accomplish a good job.
Job analysis is one of the important terms in Human Resource Management. It is a way to determine the nature of the job and the duties employee has to perform. It also provides information about what kind of people should be hired for a particular job profile. It is a systematic way to collect information and make a judgment about all the things related to a job.
The process of job analysis is to prepare a document that contains all the job specifications and descriptions related to the work performed. This process also involves a questionnaire for all employees.
Job Analysis Meaning & Definition
Job analysis works in identifying, compiling, and analyzing three main important components of Job i.e. Job Description, Job Specification, and Job Evaluation.
The Job Analysis process is to conduct a study on the data collected on the job to find out the real human requirement of the Job such as Job activities its attributes and other important tasks required for performing a specific job.
The Job Analysis Process also helps HRM and allows an organization to identify the roadmap of Job progression for an employee and their interest in the opportunities available in the job for career advancement and increased pay and benefits.
Job Analysis Definition by eminent Authors:
Different authors have given a variety of definitions of job analysis. Each of them has defined job analysis with their own understanding and style.
Find below the Job Analysis Definition and its meaning described by some of the renowned eminent authors and experts:
C. Harold and William E Kendall
“Job Analysis is a systematic procedure for securing and reporting information defining a particular job”.
“A Job is collection of duties, tasks and responsibilities, assigned to an individual and which is different from other assignment”.
“Job Analysis means an accurate study of various components of jobs, it is not only related with the analysis of duty and condition of work but also it provides information about individual qualification of the employee”.
Edwin B. Flippo
“Job analysis is the process of studying and collecting information relating to the operations and responsibilities of a specific job”.
David A. De Cenzo and Stephen P. Robbins
“Job analysis is a systematic exploration of the activities within a job. It is a basic technical procedure, one that is used to define the duties, responsibilities and accountabilities of a job”.
Herbert G. Hereman III
“A job analysis is a collection of tasks that can be performed by a single employee to contribute to the production of some product or service provided by the organization. Each job has certain ability requirements (as well as certain rewards) associated with it. It is the process used to identify these requirements”.
Harry L. Wylie
“Job Analysis deals with job anatomy. It requires complete study of the job and its embodying and determinable factors, including duties and responsibilities involved in job performance along with the job conditions under which performance is carried on. It also analyses the nature of the task, the qualifications of the workers, and the conditions of employment such as pay, working hours, opportunities and privileges of the job”.
Michael J. Jucius
“Job Analysis refers to the process of studying the operations, duties and organizational aspects of jobs in order to derive specification or job description”.
John A Shubin
“Job Analysis is the methodical compilation and study of work data in order to define and characterize each occupation in such a manner so as to distinguish it from all others”.
Scott, Clothier and Spriegel
“Job Analysis is the process of critically evaluating the operations, duties and relationship of the job”.
What is Job Analysis in HRM?
When an employee joins the organization it is imperative on the part of the employee to have information about the job assigned to him or her. Every job is different in terms of responsibility, difficulties, skills, and knowledge required to perform the job. The job analysis in Human Resource Management (HRM) provides clarity about different components of the job and the circumstances in which the job should be performed. It is a study and collection of information related to the operation and responsibility associated with the job there are three important components of job analysis, job description and job specification followed by job evaluation.
The job Analysis process in HRM helps to identify the requirement of a job and describe the suitability of a person who is supposed to perform the job. Information on job analysis is used in order to prepare job descriptions and specifications. It is also utilized to design organizational structure, proper recruitment devices, and selection methods along with compensation offered for the job. Further, the performance appraisal, training and development facilities, career path counseling, and health-related conditions are also determined based on the job analysis.
Job Analysis Process & Steps
Job analysis comprises a thorough inspection in order to control output, i.e., to guarantee that the task is done correctly. The Job Analysis method assists in understanding what a certain department needs as well as what a possible employee must provide.
The process of job analysis also helps to create employment specifications including the job title, location, job summary, duties, working conditions, possible dangers, and the machinery, tools, equipment, and materials that the present or prospective employee will use. The process, however, isn't limited to determining these variables.
Job analysis is a very useful tool from the HR point of view, but it is difficult to execute. The job Analysis process involves five steps that have to be followed for a favorable end result. The steps are described below:
- Organizational Job Analysis
The pertinent information regarding the job is obtained at the organizational level. It is critical to know what is the performance level organization is looking forward from the job holder and the contribution of the job to the goal attainment of the organization. The job-related information is then used to create an organizational chart. It consists of different job classes, flow charts, the flow of job activities, and sharing points of different job profiles.
- Selecting Representative Jobs for Analysis
It is important to understand that the analysis of jobs of the organization is a bit time-consuming and costly affair. Thus, only some sample jobs are selected in order to carry out a detailed job analysis.
- Collection of Data for Job Analysis
The information related to different features of the job and the abilities required to execute the job is collected from the organization. The job analysis tools such as observation, interviews, and questionnaires are used for the collection of data.
- Preparing Job Description
Based on the collected data the HR team prepares a job description by defining the tasks, duties, and responsibilities which are discharged for effective performance.
- Preparing Job Specification
The job specification is prepared which consist of the personal traits, skills, qualities, and qualification which are required to perform the job properly.
Depiction of Job Description and Job Specification
The depiction of the job description and job specifications consist of three aspects namely definition, purpose/usage, and content.
Job description refers to the narration of activities and duties to be performed by the employee. It also describes the relationship between the job and other job profiles, the tools or equipment which the employee will use to perform the job, working conditions, supervision specifications, and hazards related to the job. It is important the HR experts to make the job description comprehensive and clear. It is essential that an employee understands what job he/she has to do? How it should be performed and what are its consequences.
The focus of the job description is the job itself, while the job specification is linked to the person who is going to execute the job. The job specification describes the level of qualification, abilities, skills, judgment, experience, and other attributes which are required to perform the job. It is the well-noted acceptable level of abilities that the job holder must have in order to execute the job properly. It also consists of the personal, physical, social, behavioral, and psychological characteristics of the jobholders.
2. Purposes/ Usages
The usages or purpose of the job description and job specification are different. Here you can find various functions these statements are performing in the organization.
The content of job description and job specification are the points that each of these statements should include. It is the information about the job which is provided by these statements.
Once the job description and job specification are well spelled out it is essential to arrange the jobs in a hierarchical order. Job evaluation is carried out to grade different jobs and develop a suitable pay structure for them. It also defines the relationships between different jobs along with their ranking and ratings.
How to Conduct Job analysis?
The answer to how to conduct a job analysis is not an easy one. There are various aspects that are involved while the HR department conducts the job analysis.
Here are the six important aspects which has to be utilized while conducting job analysis :
- Source of data
The source of data is the person or agency which provides information about the ground reality of the job. It includes the job analyst, employees who have experience in performing such jobs, and supervisors who can convey the need of the job.
- Method of collecting data
It is difficult to collect all the information about the job without using any tools. Thus one should conduct interviews with employees and supervisors; a questionnaire can be distributed to get exact information about the job. Other information gathering methods include the records of the organization and observation by the agents or managers.
- Job data
The collected job data should include information related to jobs such as tasks, performance, standards, responsibilities, the knowledge required, skills required, experience needed, job context, equipment used and duties of job holder.
- Job specification
The job data is then divided into job specification which includes skill requirement, physical demands, knowledge requirement, and abilities needed
- Job description
The job description is a collection of information about the tasks, duties, and responsibilities of the job holder.
- Functions of the HR Department
Once the job description and specification are properly defined the information is used to carry out different HR functions such as recruitment, selection, training and development, performance appraisal, and compensation management.
Job Analysis Methods
Organizations have several methods and techniques to conduct a job analysis. Although the process of job analysis remains the same, the methods used to collect the data differ from organization to organization.
Here are some authentic job analysis methods to collect the data which is further used for conducting job analysis:
In this method, an observer is appointed by the organization to keep a watch on the individuals performing the job. The observer then creates an extensive list of tasks performed and the qualities of the individual which are utilized when executing the task. This method is useful but it does not work under certain conditions. The task executed might be different every day and thus it is difficult to draw a conclusion based on a few days of personal observation.
The actual execution of the job
The job analyzer can actually perform the job to get information about the skill requirement, difficulty while performing the job, and efforts required to finish the given task.
The information is collected about the job with the help of interviews with employees and their supervisors. The questions related to the skill level required, the task, and the preparations needed to perform the job are asked during the interview. Although it is a time-consuming technique it works well to gather information about the job. However many time both employee and supervisor forget to mention certain aspects of the job. Many times the job responsibilities are exaggerated and thus make it difficult to define the job description and specification.
This is one of the least costly methods which can be used to collect data for job analysis. A well-designed and easy to understanding questionnaires can be very useful to collect information regarding a job in a short period of time. Multiple choice questions, as well as open-ended questions, can be designed to understand the views of employees towards their job. The only drawback of this method is more number of incomplete forms and inaccurate information given by the employees about their job profile can lead to failure of job analysis.
Log records and HR records
The log record book created by the employee about their daily activities in the office is a very useful type of job data. The records are extensive in nature and thus provide fair idea regarding the responsibilities and duties linked to the job. In a similar way, the HR record can also be used as job data. It has information regarding the core competency of the employees, their experience history, and promotions received. It also has employees’ personal information such as educational qualifications, previous job profile and job title, and the year of experience.
Computerized Job Analysis
With the help of information communication technology, computerized job analysis systems are developed by researchers. The specificity of data is a significant attribute of computerized job Analysis. A job analysis database is created by compiling all the specific data together. It takes less effort and time to write job descriptions using a computerized job analysis system. The job descriptions created using this method are quite accurate and linked with the compensation system.
Apart from these methods few companies also use the critical incident method in which the employee list out their experiences of critical incidents while performing the job. Combination methods are also used sometimes to get quick and accurate results.
Purpose or Objectives of Job Analysis
The purpose of job analysis is to do a detailed examination of employee job roles, the working conditions of employees, and the abilities and skills required to perform the job. The objectives of job analysis with respective HR activities are listed below-
- To determine an efficient and effective method to execute a job
- To improve job satisfaction of employees
- To identify the needs for training and the core areas in which training should be given
- To develop a performance measurement system
- To match the specification of employees with the job role they are offered during the recruitment process for selecting the right talent for a job.
- To provide a standardized way to calculate the job compensation.
- To avoid ambiguity regarding the job duties and responsibilities of employees.
Benefits and Importance of Job Analysis
Most HR activities have greater use of job analysis. Here are some benefits and importance of job analysis from an HR point of view:
Human Resource Planning:
Job analysis provides information such as how many employees and which specific skill set is required to perform the job. This information is very necessary for human resource planning.
Recruitment and Selection:
The right person for the right job is the objective of the recruitment system. The job analysis provides information about the behavioral and personal attributes of the employees which can be utilized to make the hiring process more effective.
Training and Development:
The information regarding the skills and knowledge required to perform a job is gathered through job analysis. Thus, based on job analysis organizations can choose the right training methods and accordingly can design relevant and appropriate training and development programs for employees.
Placement and Orientation:
When the HR department links the skill set of employees, with the job to be assigned it gets easier to make a placement decision. The skillset required for a particular job is acquired through job analysis. It also provides information regarding the orientation required for a new employee in order to perform well in the assigned job.
The relative worth of a job and the appropriate salary structure of the job are determined in the job evaluation with the help of information provided by the job analysis.
The job standards are established using job analysis. These job standards are utilized to rank the employees based on their performance and further carry out the performance appraisal process.
All the records of as Human Resource Information System (HRIS) are boasted using job analysis. It helps to improve the efficiency of administration and supports the decision-making system of the organization.
Health and Safety:
Lastly, the information regarding the working condition of a job is provided by the job analysis. This information is used to create a safe and healthy workplace environment for the employees.
Job Analysis Questionnaire
The sample job analysis questionnaire includes questions related to qualifications, work experience, skills, and knowledge level of employees.
- Job Type
- Job title
- Job tasks
- Skill Required
- Knowledge Required
As mentioned above, employees have to fill up this information for job analysis. Another type of question is a yes/no question. Here is a sample of these questions-
- Do you think this job needs supervision?
- Does this job require high computer skills?
- Some open-ended questions are also included such as :
- Discuss the work conditions
- What is your opinion on the difficulty level of this job?
Job Analysis Sample for Example
Job analysis can be carried out using two different approaches namely work-oriented and employee-oriented approaches. Here is an example of job analysis using both approaches for a profile of an HR manager.
- Work oriented approach
- Job Title : HR Manager
- Reporting to : Regional HR Manager
- Job Responsibilities:
The list of responsibilities is as follows-
1. To determine the employee requirement and work on the hiring process
2. To design and execute the training and development program
3. To conduct the orientation program for newly joined employees
4. To gather information regarding the performance of the employees and complete the process of performance appraisal.
5. To maintain healthy working conditions for the employees.
6. To arrange the career counseling and planning for the employees.
7. Conduct exit interviews
2. Employee oriented approach
- Job Title : HR Manager
- Reporting to : Regional HR Manager
- Qualification : MBA in Human Resources from a reputed institute
- Experience : 5-6 years of experience in HR
- Age : Not more than 40 years
- Skillset and knowledge
1. Should be able to successfully handle the entire hiring process
2. Knowledge about tools and software used for performance appraisal
3. Excellent communication skills
4. High computer skills.