Is There a Need?
Because the business appears to be booming, or because the staff are always complaining that they are overworked - no excuse to put on more staff without a thorough survey of your actual needs. Alternatives to new staff, even if it is to replace someone who has just left, could be restructuring, downsizing, selling off parts of the business, selling all the business ....! However, if you really think that you do need one or more new staff members, read on.
Your first task is to carry out a current business performance review: from a financial, marketing, legal/administrative, production/operations, human resources point of view. Also, look at the opportunity costs - what else could you do with the money involved, or would it be a waste of business opportunities not to employ someone?
Having decided to appoint this person, you must decide exactly what she/he is going to do.
Job Analysis takes time, and the amount of effort you put into it will depend on the nature of the job in question and the amount of effort you are prepared to expend. However, the effort will be well rewarded, for a thorough job analysis provides a sound basis for advertising, selecting, training and promoting staff - it can also provide a basis for terminatying staff, if you can show they are not doing what they are supposed to be doing. There are many methods for you to choose from:
Observation Should be structured so that review is
easy and comparable Questionnaires How are they composed - by
whom? Group or individual interviews or
workshops Need to be structured for ease and
comparison How composed - see above Consultation with supervisors,
experts Means of composing questionnaires and
Should be structured so that review is easy and comparable
How are they composed - by whom?
Group or individual interviews or workshops
Need to be structured for ease and comparison
How composed - see above
Consultation with supervisors, experts
Means of composing questionnaires and interview sheets
Of course, the reality is often not the theory and many managers or owners of small businesses will be the lone supervisor/expert who is consulted. By whatever means, and I stress that the more thorough the analysis, the more useful will be the end product, you will now be able to draw up an essential item, the job description. Several samples are presented for your inspection - some better than others. Read the list of suggested items for a job description and a job specification, then look at the samples and examine them critically. Very few will include all essential items - perhaps an indication of how they were drawn up - by whom and in what haste?
Remember that job descriptions and specifications have many uses, not least in a court of law! And even if they don't get that far, they are often bones of contention. So, draw them up carefully and make sure you consult the incumbents, and review them regularly. Jobs often grow like Topsy and people take on more and more unwritten tasks - all is well, until one day .........
Consider for inclusion in a job description:
A Job/Person Specification lists what the person has to be like in order to do the job
The minimum acceptable qualifications to perform the job or position, bearing in mind application of On The Job training.
Uses of job descriptions & specifications
Now that you know what the person will do, and what qualities you will be looking for in that person, you can ask your accountant whether or not you can afford to go ahead!
Paying the person
There are many ways of costing a job, and most are too technical for inclusion here. Nevertheless, in a small business, you can often work out the details for yourself, looking at factors such as:
The cost of recruitment and selection
Revenue required to be generated
Or costs to be eliminated by the position - in the short, medium or long term
Recruitment and selection as an investment? May not be worthwhile immediately, but may pay off in the long term.
Samples of Job Descriptions & Specifications
Go on to Advertising the position
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