Why You Need to Update Your Job Descriptions

calendar December 20, 2018

Great job descriptions can perform several important HR functions for your business. When written correctly, they can provide appropriate criteria for new hires, structure for current employees, and a basis for conducting performance reviews.


And yet busy business owners often overlook this key task. Instead, they attempt to operate with outdated, inadequate, or non-existent job descriptions.


Why is it so hard to stay current?

One of the challenges of keeping up with job descriptions is something we all strive for: Growth.

When business is booming, leadership tends to put the focus on production over process. Teams get expanded rapidly, while strategy and documentation are saved for later. This can result in processes that slip rapidly out of date.

This can also happen at the individual level. When we hire the right people, they will naturally grow their positions over time. Once they have the basic job functionality down, they start learning new skills and taking on more responsibilities.

This kind of professional growth can keep team members happy but leave individual job descriptions looking sad. HR Managers may also be sad when the time comes to fill a position that no longer has an accurate description attached to it.


Staying on top of it

If regularly updating job descriptions isn’t making it to the top of your weekly, monthly or quarterly To Do list, try conducting an annual job analysis for each position in your organization.

Keep in mind that you don’t have to analyze all of your positions at once. A more manageable approach would be to use employee anniversary dates. With each passing year, ask your staff a few key questions about their job functions and how they may have changed.


Examples of job analysis questions:

  • What are your major job responsibilities?
  • Which of these take up most of your time?
  • Has anything changed in the last year?
    • New tasks?
    • Tasks you are no longer responsible for?
  • Which of these responsibilities are most critical? Least critical?
  • What specific skills and tools do you need to be good at your job?
  • What education and/or personal qualities are necessary to be successful in this role?

Instituting a regular review process will help you maintain an accurate record of each position in your organization. It will also establish the skills you need to look for when recruiting and hiring, and you can tie this exercise in with any performance management processes you already have in place.

Looking for ways to increase employee engagement? Consider integrating yearly job analysis check-ins as part of a stay interview program. Stay interviews are an effective way to have career conversations and get valuable feedback from employees. This could save you from having to discuss critical topics as they are walking out the door.


Don’t wait. Update!

If your job descriptions are out of date, now is the time to get them to the place where they can help you effectively recruit, hire, manage, and evaluate your employees.

Accurate job descriptions can help you do your job and run your business better. All you have to do is let them.

Recruiting and retaining employees is easier when you can offer a comprehensive benefits plan that makes your team members feel as valuable as they are. At Combined, we build cost effective, long-lasting employee benefits strategies to keep your business and your employees in optimum health. TO SCHEDULE FREE CONSULTATIONS, DEMO TRIAL, COMPLIANCE REVIEW, AND TO KNOW MORE ABOUT OUR SPECIAL SERVICES AND PROGRAMS. CONTACT US NOW