Q: What information needs to be included in job descriptions?
A: There are no legal requirements for what to include in a job description. However, it is advisable that job descriptions are as specific as possible.
A well-written job description is key in the staffing process. It aids in identifying candidates who are qualified to perform the essential functions of the position and who have the education and experience required.
- For the employee, it defines what is expected of him or her. The job description is an important tool in employee retention, performance management and training. It provides both the employee and supervisor with documented job expectations.
- It provides quantitative standards against which objective performance appraisals can be conducted and sound decisions can be made regarding retention, training, promotions and changes in compensation.
A job description compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) plays a key role in determining an individual’s ability to physically perform the essential functions of the position. It can also be the basis for objective consideration of reasonable accommodations.
Creating a sound job description takes some work and will typically involve a job analysis. It is a good idea for employers to regularly review existing job descriptions to ensure accuracy.