Job descriptions are an essential and often overlooked component of a company. A jobs description is a written narrative that describes the general tasks, or other related duties, and responsibilities of a certain position within a company. These descriptions are often afterthoughts and many people do not understand the power of a high quality, up to date jobs description and the amount of benefit it can bring to a company. As far as human resources management and tasks, jobs descriptions are extremely important in order to be efficient and effective. Jill Bidwell, PHR, senior HR generalist at hydraulic manufacturer Sauer-Danfoss in Ames, Iowa, explains, “I preach to all our managers and HR staff that the job description is the mother of all HR processes. Everything from recruitment and training to performance evaluations and compensation all stems from that document. Once they understand all of the various facets of the employment life cycle the job description touches, they take it a lot more seriously and put more thought into it. It’s not just a compliance exercise” (Tyler, 2013). Jill puts into perspective the multiple important items that a jobs description addresses. A jobs description allows for formal documentation of what is expected on the job for an employee and protects both the company and the employee.
One of the biggest problems with jobs reports is that companies fail to keep them up to date. HR often places updating jobs descriptions low on their priority list if they have a lot of other assignments or commitments to attend to. An organization and their workplace expectations and standards are constantly being updated and changed in order to maximize efficiency and effectiveness. As these changes and expectations evolve, it is essential to update the jobs descriptions as well in order to have documentation of the current state of the company. When a jobs description is not up to date, the company and the employees are put at risk because there is not a crystal clear documentation of expectations and important responsibilities (Tyler, 2013). In order to overcome the challenges associated with developing and maintaining jobs descriptions, HR has to put an emphasis on committing to an annual process of reviewing and updating their jobs descriptions following their performance review process. This is great timing because it allows for the company to see what they did well during the year and what needs improvement and make revisions to their jobs descriptions as necessary.
Tyler, K. (2013, January 1). Job Worth Doing: Update Descriptions. Retrieved July 10, 2021, from https://www.shrm.org/hr-today/news/hr-magazine/Pages/0113-job-descriptions.aspx