As organizations streamline their operations in 2020, it is critical to align the talent needs of the organization with the business strategy of the organization. One of the ways of doing this is to carry out job evaluation. Job evaluation refers to a system that assesses a job in relation to other roles in the organization based on common criteria. It is often carried out using one of the following approaches:
- Analytical job evaluation: This is based on method in which jobs are viewed as whole elements that can be broken down into smaller, defined elements namely: scope, knowledge, communication, level. Using a matrix that assigns values to these elements, a score is derived for each job. The total points assigned to each job are used for determination of the overall grade
- Non analytical job evaluation: Compares one job to another without considering the definite factors that make up each job
Job evaluation can be carried out by observation, questionnaire or survey. The approach depends on the job environment. A production environment would best be evaluated through observation followed by a survey. An office based job would best be evaluated through a questionnaire or a survey. All the relevant stake holders need to be involved during job evaluation. Job evaluations help establish the natural relationships within the organization. As organizations grow, they become complex in terms of the structure. Discernible differences between the roles may not be as clear as the organization continues growing. For instance, is there a difference between an entry level clerk and an executive assistant? The answer may seem obvious but it is not always obvious. A job evaluation provides data to help differentiate roles in terms of scope, knowledge and range of skills required for a role.
Job evaluation is preferred and should be carried out regularly for the following reasons:
- Promotes rational decisions about pay within the organization
Carrying out job evaluation enables the organization to minimize inconsistencies in key decisions such as the scope of a role. Evaluation of a job based on a consistent set of logical factors provides the leadership of an organization with a structure for rationale decision making on the roles that need to be filled within the organization. It also helps in the identification of replicated roles thus providing for an opportunity to redefine the roles in order to maximize the potential of the employees.
- Promotes fair system of pay
There have been complains about poorly structured pay systems in most organizations. Job evaluation can help address some of the concerns about pay structures within an organization. The pay structures in organization fall into one of these structures
- Narrow- graded structures: Jobs that are considered of equivalent value are placed in one category. The pay for that category is determined
- Broad grade structures: Fewer and wider grades are used as reference points. Progression is tied to the reference points
- Job family structure: This allows for the co-existence of different grade structures and is particularly useful when operating in different job markets
- Pay spine structures: This type of structure is common in the public sector. There are a number of pay points to which job grades are aligned. The relevant pay points determine the pay ranges for the grades. Length of one’s service determines one’ s pay progression
Each of these models has its advantages and disadvantages. Fairness in the payment system can be promoted in spite of the model of pay that is adopted by the organization. It is important for HR to align the pay structure to the values, culture of the organization and the HR strategy of the organization.
It has often been argued that is difficult to determine whether manual or administrative roles deserve more pay. Job evaluation provides a mechanism for establishing whether roles are of equal values hence deserve the same pay. In addition to this, job evaluation would provide a framework for determining where different jobs involving similar skills are being carried out hence the need for harmonization of the pay.
As a golden rule, it is important for your organization to ask whether the HR team or external HR consultant has the most recent data on the pay structure from market surveys. Given that talent retention also entails offering a competitive package to your employees, a job evaluation would provide one with an opportunity to compare the pay offered for a particular job from one organization to another. Some of the rates in the market may not match the rates offered by your organization. Some positions may also not be matched by the positions in the market. For instance, organizations are increasingly phasing out some administrative roles while others prefer to maintain lean administrative units. Bearing these differences in mind as the job evaluation is being carried out will help the organization determine whether their employee retention strategy is future-proof.
- Supports recruitment, succession planning and career development
In this era where talent is highly competitive, it is important for organizations to retain their talent by offering them competitive packages. The framework for carrying out job evaluation provides the most useful tool for comparing internal jobs to external market data on similar jobs.
For organizations that have a career family structure, the career development paths are often defined clearly. These are defined by level profiles that describe the skills, knowledge, experience and competencies that are required at each level of the structure. Carrying out a job evaluation can provide information for employees of an organization that will enable them to develop their skills for the next level as they seek to progress in their careers. Top management can identify gaps in the organization’s succession plan and put plans in place to address the gaps that have been identified.
Do you need help with carrying out job evaluation? Talk to us today and let us help you evaluate the jobs in your organization.