50.55 - Writing Results-Oriented Job Descriptions

Last updated November 7, 2006

A. General. Results-oriented job descriptions are written statements of the results that must be accomplished, the duties that must be performed in order to accomplish the results, and the minimum qualifications needed to perform those duties. Job descriptions provide a base to which management and employees can refer when questions arise. They provide the employee with a clear definition of the skills needed, the duties expected to be performed, the relative importance of priority of duties and responsibilities, the results that are expected, and the criteria to be considered in evaluation of performance.

B. Process. Job descriptions for new positions are prepared prior to recruitment by the administrator responsible for hiring, with assistance from Employment Services in Human Resources. Job descriptions are the "measuring stick" by which employee performance is evaluated; therefore, job descriptions for continuing employees are reviewed annually by the supervisor, with the employee, and revised if necessary.

C. Procedures. To prepare a results-oriented job description (or to convert an existing job description to the results-oriented format), the administrator determines the desired results and identifies representative duties which will accomplish each result. Included are examples of specific tasks, types of equipment that must be operated and the frequency of operation; potential exposure to chemicals, human or animal fluids or secretions, vapors, dust or hazardous materials; educational requirements, certificates or licenses; work schedules; skill requirements, and necessary physical abilities. Essential and marginal functions, and the approximate percent of time allocated to each process, are identified. All job descriptions should contain the following specific elements of information:

C-1. Job Title. Use the official title of the position. Each title has a title number. Employment Services maintains the university's title table and this information is available by contacting Employment Services at (208) 885-3611.

C-2. Job Summary. A statement that highlights the major purpose and functions of the position. The purpose of the job summary is to give the employee an overall impression of the scope of work.

C-3. Reporting Relationship. Include an organization chart which shows where the position fits into the department or unit. The chart should show the title to which the position reports and the titles of employees supervised, if any.

C-4. Responsibilities. Identify the results to be accomplished and provide examples of major duties and responsibilities which will accomplish those results, listing them in order of importance. Also include the percentage of time to accomplish each result. The sum of the percentages must equal 100%. Identify each duty or result as essential or marginal. Essential elements of a position identify the need for the position, i.e., the reason the position exists. Marginal elements are required to be performed, but are not the reason for which this particular position exists and usually require a small percentage of time.

C-5. Minimum Qualifications. Summarize the knowledge required, the experience and education, the physical demands, any licenses or certificates required, and the equipment to be used on the job. Minimum qualifications must be tied to the essential duties and responsibilities. Applicants who do not meet minimum qualifications cannot be forwarded to the search committee.

C-6. Additional Desirable Qualifications. Education or experience that is desired but not required. Examples might include specific scores on clerical exams, typing speed, knowledge of a particular software product.

D. Information.

D-1. Equal Opportunity Employer. The University of Idaho follows federal and state regulations in the employment process. These include but are not limited to the Fair Labor Standards Act, Affirmative Action, Equal Employment Opportunity, Americans With Disabilities Act, Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act, State of Idaho Codes affecting employment and other applicable regulations. Employment Services, the Affirmative Action Office, and Auditing Services assure that the University of Idaho is in compliance with these regulations. Questions about any of these codes, regulations or procedures may be addressed to the compensation and classification analyst in Employment Services.

D-2. Preparation of Results-Oriented Job Descriptions. The Employment Services analyst is available to offer assistance in the development or revision of the results-oriented job descriptions. Forms are available on the HR website to help organize the material in the standard UI format. Contact Employment Services at (208) 885-3611 or Employment Email.