Unsupportable Requirements in Job Description Doom Defense

Yesterday’s Advisor detailed job description horror stories. In today’s issue, another story, and an introduction to an extraordinary collection of job descriptions, written for you and ready to go.

Unsupportable Requirements in the Job Description

You don’t hire Susie for the shipping department job because the job description requires the ability to lift 80 pounds at least once a day. Susie is slight of build and you think she can’t do it.

She says you should have given her a chance to prove she could do it. She believes that you rejected her because she is a woman and she sues for discrimination.

That’s bad enough, but let’s say you learned from Susie, and now in fact you do test all applicants. You bring Janie to the 80-pound package on the floor and she can’t lift it onto the conveyer. She doesn’t get the job. You believe you’ve been fair.

Here’s what’s going to happen: Janie goes to her attorney. The attorney heads for your shipping department. The attorney says, I talked to several people and they said none of them ever lift the 80-pound packages by themselves. (In fact, the workers said, "What am I, stupid? You think I’m going to risk my back for this?")

Whoops. Now you’ve been rejecting candidates on the basis on a false criterion.

Set that keyboard aside! Your job descriptions are already written. Click here to see why thousands of managers have a permanent place in their offices for BLR’s classic Job Descriptions Encyclopedia.

Or, it could go this way: the attorney visits the shipping department, interviews several people, and discovers that the last 80-pound package left the department in 2008. Nothing over 40 pounds goes out these days. 

Whoops. Once again, a criterion that no longer applies to the job.

All of these failures magnify themselves since job descriptions are also used for job analysis and evaluation, compensation, recruitment, and career development.

How about your company’s job descriptions—do they have all the elements they should have? Duties, responsibilities, essential functions clearly delineated? And all up to date?

If not—or if you’ve never even written them—you’re not alone. Thousands of companies fall short in this area.

It’s easy to understand why. Job descriptions are not simple to do—what with updating and management and legal review, especially given the ADA requirement of a split-off of essential functions from other functions in the description. Wouldn’t it be great if your job descriptions were available and already written?

Actually, they are. We have more than 700, ready to go, covering every common position in any organization, from receptionist right up to president. They are in an extremely popular BLR® program called the Job Descriptions Encyclopedia.

First created in the 1980s, the “JDE” has been continually refined and updated over time, with descriptions revised or added each time the law, technology—or the way we do business—changes.

Prewritten job descriptions in the Job Descriptions Encyclopedia now come with pay grades already attached. Click here to try the program at no cost.

Revised for the ADA, Pay Grades Updated

There was a major revision, for example, following the passage of the ADA. In fact, BLR editors reviewed every one of those 700 descriptions to ensure they were ADA-compliant.

Another enhancement was the updating of pay grades for each job. According to our customers, this is an enormous time-saver, enabling them to make compensation decisions even as they define the position. You can see a sample job description from the program by clicking here. (Yes, it is the one for HR Manager—Pay grade: 38.)

The BLR Job Descriptions Encyclopedia also includes an extensive tutorial on setting up a complete job descriptions program, and how to encourage participation from all parts of the organization. That includes top management, the employees, and any union or other collective bargaining entity.

Quarterly Updates, No Additional Cost

Very important these days, quarterly updates are included in the program as a standard feature—key at a time of constantly changing laws and emerging technologies. We’ll send you new or revised descriptions every 90 days. And the cost is extremely reasonable, averaging less than 43 cents per job description … already written, legally reviewed, and ready to adapt or use as is.

You can evaluate BLR’s Job Descriptions Encyclopedia at no cost in your office for up to 30 days. Get more information or order the Job Descriptions Encyclopedia.

Download product sample
Download list of job descriptions included

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