Job evaluation is the process in which various jobs are analyzed systematically to substantiate their relevant worth in the organization. The job is evaluated based on its content and therefore is ranked according to its importance in the organization in a Job Evaluation exercise, it should be noted that the job itself is the one being assessed and not the person who is doing the job. For the effectiveness of Job Evaluation, it is recommended that the same job be re-evaluated after every 5 years. The reason behind this is because jobs are not constant. With the ever-changing global village that we live in, the market and its demand change accordingly.
Why is Job Evaluation important (Michigan State University)?
- Job evaluation helps in gathering the data and information relating to the job description, job specification, and the employee specifications of the different jobs in an organization.
- It compares the main duties, demands, and responsibilities of a certain job with that of others.
- It determines the hierarchical structure of jobs within an organization. This is done through the exercise of “Job Grading”.
- Ensures fair and equitable wages of jobs based on the worth of these jobs in the organization. Remember, job evaluation does not determine the worth of the person doing the job but that of the job itself.
- Job Evaluation minimizes the discrimination of pay based on gender, sex, age, nationality among other groups.
The Job Evaluation process
The Job Evaluation process entails a series of activities within it for it to be finally called a Job Evaluation. Both the job grader and the job incumbent play a large role in ensuring the success of this evaluation.
- Outline the objectives of doing the job evaluation process in the organization. Everyone must know why this activity is being done and what implications it may have on them, whether good or bad.
- After the objectives have been laid out, the job analysis exercise begins. A Job Analysis is an activity in which a job is analyzed using the information provided by the incumbent themselves, as well as their supervisor. Here the job description and job specifications are needed. The information provided here must be thorough and of good quality so that whoever is grading the job does not make a mistake, based on the wrong information provided in the job descriptions.
- Selecting the method of evaluation, according to the job factors and organizational demand. Everyone must be on the same page as to which system will be sued to grade the jobs in the organization. This removes any discrepancies when the results are then published.
- Job grading – After the method has been identified, the job grading process takes place. Preceding this, a job grading committee needs to be put in place and everyone must know who is part of this committee. The people who are chosen to be a part of this committee need to be objective and fairly represent the jobs that are being graded.
- After the job grading has been completed, the results need to be published to the ob incumbents. Before going on to do a pay structure, everyone must be satisfied with the grade that their job has been placed in. A window period should be opened to allow for any appeals to be lodged and any corrections to be made. If everyone is satisfied, the ay structure can proceed and the job evaluation would have been complete.
Different types of Job Grading systems
Castellion System – The Castellion system has 16 grades used to rank jobs against. This job grading system ranks its job based on six factors which are:
- Decision–making: the exercise of choosing between alternatives courses of action
- The pressure of work: the volume of work and the pressure under which decisions have to be made
- Controls and checks: Both direct and indirect controls applied the activities of the incumbent
- A consequence of Error: the possibility of losses that may result from wrong decisions or lack of vigilance.
- Education: level of education required to perform the duties of the job.
- Experience: the maximum period needed for a person with the required education to perform the duties of the job.
- Grade 16 is for simple decisions
- Grade 15 for pragmatic (practical things) decisions
- Grades 14 to 9 is for tactical decisions
- Grade 8 to 5 co-ordination interpretative decisions
The Paterson System - This system grades jobs according to how many Job Evaluation decisions a worker has to make in his or her job, and how important these decisions are in the running of the overall unit, branch, or industry. The keywords in using this job grading system are ‘decision-making’. When coming up with this system, Professor Paterson came up with six decision bands that he believed to be a part of every societal group. This acknowledgment is important as leading can be done in various ways. As a result, this system can be applied to other societal groups anywhere in the world.
The bands are outlined below from the lowest ranking to the highest rank.
- Band A - Defined decisions - unskilled workers
- Band B - Automatic decisions - semi-skilled workers
- Band C - Routine decisions - skilled workers
- Band D - Interpretive decisions - middle management
- Band E - Programming decisions - senior management
- Band F - Policymaking decisions - top management
Decision making in the Paterson grading system is a construct of various factors which according to Paterson Job Grading (2020), include:
- Job complexity
- Pressure of work
- Supervision given
- Independence of work
- Judgment and impact
- Knowledge, skills, and competencies
Hay System – The Hay system is an analytic system based on analyzing each job in terms of three criteria: Skills & knowledge, problem-solving, and accountability. The system originated from the fact that the method flows from the concept that all jobs are required to contribute to the achievement of results in an organization. For this to be possible, the job holder needs to bring with him certain skills (analyzing, evaluating, reasoning, arriving at and making), knowledge, and experience to obtain the desired results (LinkedIn, 2020).
The three dimensions are explained below:
- Problem-solving - the original “self-starting” thinking required by the job for analyzing, evaluating, creating, reasoning, arriving at, and making conclusions.
- Accountability - the measured effect of the job on the results. Accountability has three dimensions in the following order of importance: i) Freedom to act is the degree of personal or procedural control and guidance the jobholder has. Job impact on results ranges from direct to indirect impact on results by auxiliary, contributory, shared, or primary effects. Magnitude is indicated by the general dynamic monetary size or accountability area(s) most clearly affected by the job
- Know-how - is the total which comprises the overall “fund of knowledge” has three dimensions. The requirements for practical procedures, specialized techniques, and learned disciplines, active, practicing skills in the area of human relationships. Lastly know-how of integrating and harmonizing the diversified functions involved in managerial situations (operating, supporting, and administrative). This know-how may be exercised consultatively as well as executively and involves in some combination the areas of organizing, planning, executing, controlling, and evaluating.
Why Patterson is used in Zimbabwe
It is not that other job grading methods are not good but there is a simple explanation as to why this system is commonly used in the country. The biggest reason why the Paterson system is widely accepted in Zimbabwe is that about 51% of organizations in the country use the system. This becomes easier to compare the jobs in one organization to similar ones in the market. It is found that most larger organizations also prefer using this system because it works best in organizations with 50+ employees in its structure.
Thandeka Madziwanyika is a Consultant at Industrial Psychology Consultants (Pvt) Ltd, a management and human resources consulting firm. Phone +263 (242) 481946-48/481950 or cell number +263 78 318 0936 or email: [email protected] or visit our website at www.ipcconsultants.com
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