We all know that hiring a new employee can either make or break a business. While it is very easy and tempting for some small businesses to hire one of the first people that apply for a role it can also have detrimental effects on the business later on down the track. A Job Analysis is a smart way to start understanding your staffing needs before you begin advertising. You may think you need a permanent full time employee but once conducting the job analysis you may find you only a need a fixed term employee. When finances are tight in businesses the analysis of staffing costs can save a huge amount of money and sometimes prevent redundancies.

What is a Job analysis?
Job Analysis is a process used to identify and understand in detail the particular job duties and requirements and the relative importance of these particular duties for a given job. It is the actual job that is being analysed not the person completing the job.

What is the purpose of a Job Analysis?
A job analysis is generally conducted when preparing a job description or position description. It can also be conducted to establish the induction process, training requirements, recruitment, compensation, and performance appraisals.

Methods of Job Analysis
It may include conducting some of the following activities:

  •  A one on one interview focussing on responsibilities with the current employee
  • Questionnaires handed out to relevant team members
  • Researching sample job descriptions online
  • Supervisor interviews
  • Observation
  • Internet research
  • Contacting similar businesses that employ people in that role
  • Work logs

What areas of the job do you analyse?

  • Duties and Tasks: The fundamental component of a job is the performance of specific tasks and duties. Information to be collected about these items may include: the frequency, duration, effort, skill, complexity, etc. It can include both mental tasks i.e. Planning and organising to physical tasks i.e. cleaning and lifting. It will also include the job goals.
  • Requirements: The knowledge, skills, abilities, and personality traits required to perform the job. A Job Analysis generally only covers the minimum requirements to perform the job.
  • Environment This may have a significant impact on the physical requirements to be able to perform a job. The work environment may include unpleasant conditions such as weather exposure. There may also be risks to the incumbent such as dealing with hazardous chemicals.
  • Tools and Equipment: Some duties and tasks are performed using specific equipment and tools. Equipment may include protective clothing and working on machinery. These items need to be specified in a Job Analysis.
  • Relationships: This includes if the individual supervises staff or is supervised them self. It also includes relationships with internal or external people.

As you can see this is not a simple thing to do, but is highly beneficial when push comes to shove and you find you are recruiting your next team member. Take the time now to get some correct systems in place and you will thank yourself later.