It is a technique used to identify the labour competencies inherent in a productive function. Such function may be defined at the level of an occupational sector, an enterprise, a group of enterprises or a whole sector of production or services. Functional analysis may be developed with different initial levels: an occupational sector (hotel); mainstream occupations at various sectors (occupational safety and health); or an occupation (PC repairman). It is thus evident the flexibility of functional analysis. Although it was designed as a wide-scale analysis tool, it may also be useful to analyse occupations in certain subsectors or even at specific organisations.(1)
Functional analysis is not an exact method whatsoever. It is a working approach to the required competencies by means of a deductive strategy. It begins by establishing the main purpose of the productive function or service under study and then questions are asked to find out what functions need to be performed in order for the previous function to be achieved.
Ideally, this is carried out on a group of workers who are familiar with the function object of the analysis. Its worth as a tool comes directly from its representative quality. Certain rules are followed during its preparation in order to keep uniform criteria. The main purpose, key purpose or key function of the enterprise is usually described by following this structure:
Some definitions of functional analysis
SENAI defines the functional analysis as a method that begins with the definition of the key enterprise purpose and concludes when the simplest productive functions are defined -competence elements- carried out by a worker. They have been used to establish an occupational qualification structure, starting on the identification of its main purpose, deriving successfully to those significant functions and sub-functions for the achievement of this purpose arriving, in this way, to the Competence Elements and Performance...
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