Practical Implications of Job Analysis in the Veterans Home Administration

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Practical Implication of Job Analysis in the Veterans Home Administration The use of job analysis is an effective tool in the realm of human resource management. Job analysis is defined as “a logical process to determine (1) purpose-the reason for the job, (2) essential functions-the job duties which are critical or fundamental to the performance of the job, (3) job setting-the work station and conditions where the essential functions are performed, and (4) job qualifications-the minimal skills an individual must possess to perform the essential functions. A job analysis describes the job, not the person who fills it” (Department of Labor, 2004). Using functional job analysis, the Veterans Home Administration conducted a study of medical staffing and found an overlap of jobs and duties among its direct care providers. It also found the administrative support staff was being underutilized in their jobs as well. The study was conducted on six primary care locations within the VHA system. Surveys were completed by participants and noted that among doctors, physician assistants, nurses and LVNs, they were completing 60 to 97 percent of the same tasks. Also with the bulk of the work being performed by these occupational fields, there was question to whether the clerks and support staff were being underutilized. Having several different occupational groups completing the same task caused decreased efficiency and increased the likely hood of medical errors. However it was noted that among some staff such as nurse practitioners, work was comparable to physicians and having better outcomes in some cases (Best, et al, 2006). It is clear that a redesign in clinical tasks and practices are needed to be made to optimize the efficiency of the medical staff. A more functional design was needed. One which would be based on clinical tasks being performed based on skill sets and competencies. This would help eliminate the overlap of tasks being performed.

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