Job design theory is an important concept in business management. The way a job is designed affects employee work performance. It is crucial that organizations create an environment where workers are motivated by jobs in which they feel challenged but at the same time, their work goes with the objectives of the company. Designing jobs properly will cause a positive impact on motivation, performance, and job satisfaction on those who perform them (Moorhead and Griffin, 1998). According to the hierarchical scheme of five basic needs of A. H. Maslow, people need to stay alive, to be safe, to be with others, to be respected and to do work that corresponds to our gifts and abilities (Bittel and Newstrom, 1990). Based on this, well-designed jobs will help organizations to handle the capacity of their employees and the challenges presented by jobs.
Definition of Job design
Taylor, Doherty, McGraw (2007, p. 44) state that “Job design is the process of outlining the way work is performed and the required tasks, using job analysis and contextualizing this information by locating the job within the work group. Job design takes into account the needs of both the work group and the organization in the design of the job.” It is important to mention that job design and job analysis are related mutually. According to Mc Kenna (2006, p. 696), “Job analysis is designed to produce systematic information about jobs, including the nature of the work performed.” Kramar, et al., (1995, p.265) found that “Job analysis and design is the basis of the job descriptions and job specifications used in making employment decisions such as selection, promotion and performance appraisal.
Example 1, an article published in "The Times" on September 24th, 2008, talks about a specific Job Design of a barrister based on the live experience of Taryn Lee, a women who has been standing in court and defending people for more then 20 years. According to the article, there are specific characteristics and attributes relevant for a barrister job such as qualifications and diplomas, training process, attributes such as excellent written and verbal skills, earnings given depending the experience level, and working times. This article describes in a very detailed way the necessary skills for this job according to a real life experience. (The Times, Wednesday 24th september 2008). Slapper, G., 2005. Corporate manslaughter: new issues for lawyers. The Times, 3 Sep. p.4b.
A job analysis and design include a job specification and a job description. A job specification “describes the characteristics needed to perform the job activities identified in the job description.” These characteristics are knowledge, skills or abilities. A job description is “an account of the duties and activities associated with a particular job” (Ferris, et al., 2002).
For example, in the company Commercial Accountant Qualified (ACCA/CIMA), a job specification for an accountant is to have commercial experience required, self- starter, analytical skills, flexible, with experience of computer accounting packages essential and Quickbooks preferred. It has to be able to manage day-to-day accounts function and admin (Times, 2008, 3 October, p. 46).
Example of job description is the role of Corporate Relationship Manager for the company ifs School of Finance which involves increasing the awareness and understanding of the range of professional pathways and executive advancement available from ifs relevant to the customer’s needs (Times, October 10, 2008, p. 77).
Example2: GAUCHO Grill Restaurants, the Job Description form (See appendix). According to the information provided by GAUCHO Grill Restaurants, one of the biggest steak houses in London we can analyze their job description for two different positions, such as bartender and Receptionist. The way to do the job description for GAUCHO is very similar for all positions, is...
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