Everything you need to know about the process of job analysis. Job analysis is a staff function. In order to carry out job analysis, we need a trained and highly efficient job analyst.

The job analyst can be a member of the HR department, provided we have such an expert in the HR department. If need be, a practice expert can be arranged from outside the organisation also. Some big organisations employ full-time trained job analysts.

The job analyst should be impartial, trained and well-equipped in the modern techniques of job analysis. Job analysis is a process involving different steps to be undertaken in a sequential manner.

Thus, the process of job analysis contains the following activities- determination of uses of job analysis, strategic choices in job analysis, information collection, and information processing.


Jean Jones and Thomas Decothis have defined Job Analysis as, “A process of getting information about jobs specially what the worker does; how he gets it done; why he does it; skill, education and training required and job relationships to other jobs; physical demands; environmental conditions”.

In this article we will discuss about the process of job analysis.

The process of job analysis is basically one of data collection. It involves a number of steps, and can be divided into parts.

The steps are:- 1. Indicating the Purpose  2. Strategic Choices 3. Selection of Representative Job to be Analysed 4. Data Collection 5. Filling Job Descriptions 6. Preparation of Job Specification 7. Writing the Report 8. Getting Final Approval.


Additionally, learn about the four major phases followed by job analyst. The phases are: – 1. Scope of Job Analysis 2. Methods of Job Analysis 3. Data Collection and Analysis 4. Assessing Job Analysis Methods.

Process of Job Analysis: Steps, Procedure and Phases

Process of Job Analysis – Data Collection, Filling Job Descriptions, Preparation of Job Specification, Writing the Report & Getting Final Approval

Job analysis is a staff function. In order to carry out job analysis, we need a trained and highly efficient job analyst. The job analyst can be a member of the HR department, provided we have such an expert in the HR department. If need be, a practice expert can be arranged from outside the organisation also. Some big organisations employ full-time trained job analysts. The job analyst should be impartial, trained and well-equipped in the modern techniques of job analysis.

The process of job analysis is basically one of data collection. It involves a number of steps, and can be divided into parts.

Process # 1. Data Collection:

As getting and stating facts as accurately as possible is only a part of the job analysts assignment, the first step is to gather factual material about the job.


In order to carry out this, following methods can be adopted:

i. Questionnaires:

Collection of information through questionnaires is often found to be incom­plete and unorganised because this technique presumes that the job holder has necessary abil­ity to furnish the desired information properly, whereas in most cases, including even employees holding high posts, this sort of ability is missing. However, the information collected through job questionnaire(s) can be gainfully utilised at the time of interviewing the employee.

ii. Written Narratives:


In this method, detailed written information is collected from the job holder and his/her ‘supervisor’. The job holder can also be requested to record daily full details of his/her major duties, including the time taken in doing each task. Unless supported by follow-up interviews, the technique does not serve the desired purpose.

iii. Personal Observation:

This technique is relatively better than the former ones. In this tech­nique, working conditions, equipment and materials used, skills required and so on are observed personally by the job analyst so that a clear picture may emerge. However, this technique may be helpful in the case of only routine and repetitive jobs and not in the case of com­plex jobs. It is always desirable if personal observation is followed by follow-up interviews.

iv. Conducting Personal Interviews:


Although this technique involves more expenditure and is also time consuming, if any one or a combination of two or more of the aforesaid three tech­niques are used by the job analyst for gathering information for a job analysis, then it is always desirable that these techniques should be supplemented by personal interviews of the employ­ees concerned.

A combination of personal observation and interview is supposed to be a better proposition. Since interview is the prime method for collection of job information, the job analyst needs a certain amount of organisation sense, considerable aptitude insight, expe­rience as an interviewer, courtesy, thoroughness, objectivity and efficiency because in a sense, the job analyst is an ambassador in this regard.

The job analyst should take care of the following suggestions:

(1) As far as possible, interviews should be conducted when the employees are free and off the duty so that neither the employee nor the organisation suffers on this count.


(2) If an interview is to be conducted during duty hours, then the job analyst should seek permis­sion of the supervisor or head of the section/department.

(3) The job analyst should introduce himself/herself so that the employee may come to know the job analyst and his/her purpose to be there.

(4) Keen interest in the employee and the job being analysed should be shown.

(5) As far as possible, the job analyst should talk to the interviewees in their own language.

(6) Do not tell the employee what he/she does. Let him/her describe the job.

(7) Help the employee to organise his/her thinking, but avoid putting words into his/her mouth.

(8) Help the job holder to talk about ‘what he/she is paid for’, rather than what he/she does.

(9) Do not try to tell the job holder how to do the job.

(10) The work should not be confused with worker.

(11) The job analyst should verify the job information collected from one job holder by consulta­tion with other job holders handling the same job.

Process # 2. Filling Job Descriptions:

After collecting information through aforementioned techniques, the job analyst makes his/her file up to date and then fills the standard job description pro formas which are separate for separate jobs.

As is clear from the title, these proformas are descriptive in nature and contain vital information regarding the existing and future jobs.

While writing job descriptions, the following precautions should be taken:

(1) Every sentence should start with a functional verb.

(2) These should be written in present tense.

(3) These should be brief and accurate.

(4) These should be in a simple and lucid style.

(5) These should have examples of work performed.

(6) It should specify the extent of direction received and supervision given.

(7) Avoid statement of opinions.

(8) Describe in adequate detail each of the main duties and responsibilities.

(9) Give a clear, concise and readily understandable picture of the whole job.

Contents of Job Description:

A job description includes:

(1) Job identification

(2) Job summary

(3) Duties performed

(4) Extent of supervision given and received

(5) Machines, tools and equipment used

(6) Working conditions

(7) Relation to other jobs

(8) Organisation relationship

(9) Hazards involved

(10) Pay

(11) Training and promotion

(12) Required qualifications of the worker

(13) Comments.

Process # 3. Preparation of Job Specification:

Like a job description, a job specification is also an immediate product of job analysis. It is also prepared on the basis of information collected in the process of job analysis, but preparing a complete and correct job description is relatively simpler as compared with preparing a complete and correct job specification.

A job specification is the ‘statement of the minimum acceptable human qualities necessary to perform a job properly’. It contains two important things, namely – (a) job identification and (b) required human qualities and qualifications.

Process # 4. Writing the Report:

Having prepared the job description and job specification, the job analyst has to prepare a report. Hence, he/she puts his/her notes together and prepares a draft which should be shown to the departmental supervisor and/or head of the department/manager of the organisation and their suggestion can be solic­ited.

The job analyst now revises his/her first draft, incorporating any new information or suggestion that can make his/her analysis more accurate or more informative. If there is a union in the organisation and if the management policy is to review the job analysis with the union representatives before issuing the details of the job analysis, then the complete draft may now be reviewed and/or discussed with top office­ bearers of the local union.

In such cases, the management’s intention is not to get the union’s approval of the draft, but it is just like informing the union in advance that the draft is ready for approval by the management. However, the management may consider the suggestion, if any, made by the union.

Process # 5. Getting Final Approval:

Although getting final approval of the job analysis is usually not considered as part of the process, no such document becomes official until it has been approved by the line manager or staff expert who is considered to be the final authority in this matter. Hence, getting final approval of the job analysis from the competent authority is equally important.

Process of Job Analysis – 7 Step Process to Conduct Job Analysis

Job analysis involves identification of all important information about a job. To perform such task –

i. It needs support of the top management

ii. It is necessary to make the people know the objectives, purposes of job analysis

iii. Supervisors’ support, assistance and help is required to job analyst

iv. It needs full cooperation of the concerned employees and also of their union to carry out job analysis programme

Then following steps are taken to conduct job analysis –

Step # 1. Indicating the Purpose of Job Analysis:

First step is to indicate the purpose for which job analysis is required to be conducted. Identification of the purpose is necessary as selection of technique / method for collecting information becomes perfect if the purpose / use of job analysis is known beforehand.

Step # 2. Analysis of Organization Chart, Workflow and Job Description to Obtain Background Information:

In this step job analyst needs to collect background information viz. –

i. The importance of the relevant job in the organizational setting in relation with other job

ii. How the jobs are related with each other

iii. The contribution of the concerned job as also other jobs to the growth and development of the organization

iv. Input and output flow of job

v. Existing job description to provide a starting point to prepare revised job description.

The above information is available from the organization chart and workflow.

Step # 3. Selection of Representative Positions for Analysis:

It is not possible for the job analyst to analyse all jobs in the organization. The representative positions (i.e. the jobs which are similar) are selected and analysed. This is done looking to the costs involved, time required and urgency for completion of the task.

Step # 4. Collection of Data for Job Analysis:

For the purpose of job analysis data are collected with the use of appropriate techniques.

Generally, collection is made on the following areas.

i. Job activities,

ii. Skill, abilities, efforts needed

iii. Qualities, traits required to perform the job

iv. Working conditions

v. Employee behaviours

vi. Responsibilities.

Step # 5. Verification of Information Collected for Job Analysis:

It is necessary to verify the information collected for job analysis with the employee performing the job and also with the supervisor under whom employee works. Through verification process, the concerned employee can come to know whether the data collected by the job analyst are correct or not. The employee develops confidence on the job analysis mechanism when factual data are taken for analysis and accepts those data collected by job analyst.

Step # 6. Creation of a Job Description:

This step involves creation of a job description. It is necessary as each employee wants to know what he is expected to do. How it is to be done? What standard is set? And what is his level of performance? From all these the employee can know the job description.

The job description identifies and describes contents of a specific job, activities, accountabilities and responsibilities of the job in a clear and concise way as well as important characteristics of the job.

Step # 7. Developing a Job Specification:

After preparation of the job description the next step is to develop a job specification. It is importantly needed to prepare job specification as for effective accomplishment the job may demand for a particular type of person.

The job specification indicates requirement of various factors normally found in the job, like:

i. Personal qualities, traits (patience, tact, stress tolerance capability etc.)

ii. Skill, knowledge, efforts, ability required to perform the job

iii. Educational standard

iv. Past experience

v. Competence in the use of certain tools, machinery.

Process of Job Analysis – 4 Important Steps: Determination of Uses, Strategic Choices, Information Collection and Information Processing

Job analysis is concerned with three important components of a job i.e., individual qualifications, duties and working conditions. According to Edwin B. Flippo, “Job analysis begins with obtaining pertinent information about a job”. K. Aswathappa states that, “Job analysis involves collection of job related information”. It is a detailed study of a job to learn about its various elements. Job analysis results in two important documents.

The steps involved in the job analysis process discussed below:

1. Determination of Uses of Job Analysis:

In the very beginning job analysis was used primarily for recruitment and selection. As the complexity of managing human resources increased, the scope of the use of job analysis also increased covering many more areas. Hence, before undertaking the actual procedure of job analysis, the organisation should define the uses of job analysis.

2. Strategic Choices in Job Analysis:

Regarding job analysis, an organisation needs to make at least the following selections:

(i) Employee Involvement:

Job analysis requires collecting job-related information-duties, responsibilities, skills and knowledge in order to perform the jobs. Employees are often asked to supply vital information about the contents of job; given their familiarity with it.

(ii) Level of Details:

The level of analysis may be different from detailed, as in time and motion studies, to broad as in analysing jobs based on general duties. The level of analysis affects the nature of the data collected.

(iii) When and How Often:

Another useful strategic choice that is related to the timing and frequency of conducting job analysis.

Generally, job analysis is conducted as the following occurrences:

(a) When a job is changed significantly due to change in technology, methods, procedures or systems;

(b) When the organisation is contemplating a new remuneration plan;

(c) When an organisation is newly established and the job analysis is initiated for the first time;

(d) When a new job is created in an established company;

(e) When the employees or managers feel that there exist certain inequities between job demands and the remuneration it carries.

(iv) Past-Oriented versus Future-Oriented:

In an organisation rapid changes are seen due to fast growth or technological change, a more future oriented approach to job analysis then may be desired. Traditional job analysis information describes how the job has been done in the past and the manner in which it is being done at present.

In case, it is felt important, a future orientation can be given to the job analysis and predictions may be made as to how the job will be done in future and the way it should be done, this will permit firms to begin engaging and importing training to the candidates people for these jobs prior to the actual change.

(v) Source of Job Data:

Although the most direct source of information about a job is the job holder, yet a number of other human and non-human sources are present. These sources may provide information which an average job holder cannot possess this the job analyst is enabled to raise question the job holder more effectively.

3. Information Collection:

This step includes decisions on three issues, viz.:

(i) Persons Involved in Information Collection:

Trained job analysts, superiors and job holders are persons who may be incorporated in information collection.

(ii) Methods for Specific Data Collection:

Various methods may be used to collect information for job analysis like questionnaire, checklist, interview, etc.

(iii) Types of Job Analysis Information:

Considerable information is required for the successful accomplishment of job analysis. The job analyst identifies the job’s actual duties and responsibilities and gather the other types of data there information like work activities, worker-oriented activities machines, tools, equipment and work aids used, job-related tangibles and intangibles, work performance, job context and personal requirement for the job.

4. Information Processing:

After the job information has been collected, the information needs to be processed the reason is only then it would be useful in various personnel functions. Specifically, job-related data would be useful to prepare job description and job specification.

(i) Job Description (JD):

Job description (JD) implies objective listing of the job title, tasks, duties and responsibilities involved in a job. It is a written statement containing the following pieces of information what the job holder does, how it is done, under what conditions it is done and why it is done.

It provides description of what the job is all about, throwing a broad light on job content, environment and conditions of employment. It is descriptive in nature and analytical as well the reason is it defines the purpose and scope of a job. The main aim to write a job description is to differentiate the job from other jobs and state its outer limits.

(ii) Job Specification:

Job specification or job requirements can be called a byproduct of job analysis process. It is a statement of minimum acceptable human qualities that are required to perform a given job. It is inclusive of all human qualities to be taken, i.e., physical, personal, psychological responsibilities to be taken over and academic qualifications and experience, etc.

Job specification is of use in the selection process the reason is it offers a clear set of qualifications for an individual to be hired for a specific job. Different job analysis methods yield different outputs or products; however, the most common outputs of job analysis are ‘job descriptions’ and ‘job specifications’.

Process of Job Analysis – 5 Basic Steps Required for Analysis

According to Michael J. Jucius, “Job Analysis refers to the process of studying the operations, duties and organisational aspects of jobs in order to derive specifications or as they are called by some, job descriptions.”

According to Edwin B. Flippo, “Job Analysis is the process of studying and collecting information relating to the operations and responsibilities of a specific job.”

As per Dale Yoder, “Job Analysis furnishes the facts which indicate what is being done and what kind of employees are required”.

Jean Jones and Thomas Decothis have defined Job Analysis as, “A process of getting information about jobs specially what the worker does; how he gets it done; why he does it; skill, education and training required and job relationships to other jobs; physical demands; environmental conditions”.

According to Cascio & Aguinis (2005) and Harvey (1991), “job analysis invokes collecting data about observable job behaviors, and delineating the knowledge, skills, abilities, and other characteristics needed to perform the job.”

There are five basic steps required for doing a job analysis, viz.:

Step 1 – Collection of Background Information:

According to Terry, the make-up of a job, its relation to other jobs, and its requirements for competent performance are essential information needed for a job evaluation. This information can be had by reviewing available background information such as organisation charts (which show how the job in question relates to other jobs and where they fit into the overall organisation); class specifications (which describe the general requirements of the class of job to which the job under analysis belongs); and the existing job descriptions which provide a starting point from which to build the revised job description.

Step 2 – Selection of Representative Job to be Analysed:

Since the analysis of all jobs would be time-consuming, few representative positions should be analysed.

Step 3 – Collection of Job Analysis Data:

Job data on features of the job, required employee qualifications and requirements, should be collected either from the employees who actually perform a job; or from other employees (such as foremen or supervisors) who watch the workers doing a job and thereby acquire knowledge about it; or from the outside persons, known as the trade job analysts who are appointed to watch employees performing a job.

The duties of such a trade job analyst are:

(i) To outline the complete scope of a job and to consider all the physical and mental activities involved in determining what the worker does. For this purpose, he studies the physical methods used by a worker to accomplish his task (including the use of machinery, tools and his own movements and necessary mental facilities);

(ii) Find out why a worker does a job; and for this purpose he studies why each task is essential for the overall result; and

(iii) The skill factor which may be needed in the worker to differentiate between jobs and establish the extent of the difficulty of any job.

Step 4 – A Job Description:

The information collected is to be developed in the form of a job description. This is a written statement that describes the main features of the job, as well the qualifications/activities which the job incumbents must possess.

Step 5 – Developing Job Specification:

The last step is to convert the Job Description statements into Job Specifications, i.e., to specifically mention what personal qualities, traits, skills and background is necessary for getting the job done.

Process of Job Analysis – 4 Major Phases Followed by Job Analyst

The job analysis process consists of a number of steps, which can be grouped into the four major phases. In phase 1, the job analyst determines the scope of job analysis. In phase 2, the job analyst determines what method or methods of job analysis to use. In phase 3, the process is the collection and analysis of the job information. In phase 4, the overall value of the job analysis in terms of its costs, benefits and legality is determined.

Phase 1- The Scope of the Job Analysis:

To determine the scope of any job analysis project, an organization must resolve two issues:

I. The organization must decide what it has to accomplish with the job analysis data; and

II. It must identify the jobs that it wants to include in the analysis program.

Top management throughout the organization, and particularly within the HR function of the company, must be involved in these decisions.

According to Fisher and others (1999), there are a variety of factors that should determine which jobs in an organization should be analyzed. Likely targets of job analysis are jobs that are critical to the success of an organization, for example, those of quality control specialists in an organization whose business strategy focuses on providing high-quality products.

Jobs that are difficult to learn and perform are also essential to analyze, as are jobs for which the organization constantly has to hire new employees. Legal consideration, also, may assist to determine which jobs should be analyzed. Jobs that have few minority or female employees should be analyzed to ensure that illegal discrimination does not occur in hiring practices.

In addition, jobs should be analyzed when new technology or other circumstances suggest that the way in which the job is performed needs to be changed.

When completely new jobs are added, these should be analyzed. When some jobs are eliminated and their duties distributed to other jobs within the organization, job analysis may be appropriate to clarify the nature of these expanded jobs.

Phase 2- The Methods of Job Analysis:

In this phase, the job analyst has to determine the method or methods of job analysis. He must decide (1) the type of data to collect, (2) the sources of information, and (3) the specific procedure of job analysis to implement.

Different types of data can be collected in a job analysis project. These data include behavioural descriptions, ability requirements, job characteristics, and information about equipment used on the job.

Although the most direct source of information about a job is the job incumbent, a number of other-human and non-human-sources are available. These sources may provide information that the average job incumbent cannot, thereby enabling the job analyst to question the incumbent more effectively.

Job analysis is the first source of information about a job that already exist. However, these data should be used with caution as they may have been developed using inadequate procedures, or they may no longer be valid descriptions of present day jobs.

Job analysts, trainers, supervisors and other experts may be knowledgeable about the content and context of the work.

In deciding which sources to use in a given job analysis, the job analyst should follow two guidelines:

i. For non-human sources, use those sources that are most recent.

ii. Use several sources of information whenever possible.

The simplest job analysis procedures are narrative job descriptions. Data collected from various sources are transformed into written descriptions of job activities. Engineering approach is another procedure used for job analysis. These procedures evolved from work in industrial engineering and engineering psychology.

Structured job analysis procedures use much defined physical structure and or distinctive sets of routines to collect job information.

Managerial job analysis procedures are specifically designed for analyzing managerial jobs. The nature of supervisory and executive jobs makes them particularly difficult to analyze. Thus, relatively few successful procedures for managerial job analysis have been developed.

Phase 3- Data Collection and Analysis:

The job analysis must address several issues connected to collecting and analyzing job data. The first aspect of collecting job data is to the organization need. Second, the job analyst must be aware of the sources of bias that may influence the accuracy of the data collected. Finally, the job analyst must be sure that interviews if used are conducted in a skillful manner.

Before the data collection, it must be ensured that members of the organization understand and are committed to the project.

According to Fisher, for this purpose, the job analyst can:

(i) Involve top management from the very start of the project. It is necessary that the top management demonstrates its support of the project. It must be clearly indicated to the employees how the project will benefit the organization and what the purpose of the project is,

(ii) Coordinate all activities associated with the project through the organization’s HRM func­tions, and

(iii) Provide all persons involved in the data collection with information about the objectives and nature of the project. Provide this information before data collection are reinforced it throughout the project.

During the data collection phase, the primary concern about collecting the data about a job is that these data provide an accurate, up-to-date, and representative picture of work activities. On major source of bias that can occur during data collection results from the sampling procedure used to select data sources. Sampling bias occurs because jobs are dynamic. Job dynamics result from time-determined changes, employees determined changes and situation determined changes.

Once the job of collecting quantitative data is over, numerous methods for analyzing the data are available. Fisher observes that a good job analyst should have a thorough knowledge of statistics, or, at least, sufficient knowledge to be able to work closely with experts in statistical methods.

Before collecting data, the analyst should determine what analysis procedures to use. Unless these decisions are made in advance, the job analyst may find that the data collected are not amenable to the analysis procedure that he or she wants to use. The analyst should also carry out an inner-rater reliability check.

Phase 4- Assessing Job Analysis Methods:

Several factors may be used to assess job analysis method. Fisher suggests some criteria that may serve as the basis for assessments include purposes served, versatility, standardization, user acceptability, training required, sample size, off-the-shelf, reliability, time to complete and cost. Although these criteria can be helpful in comparing objectives of the organization, as well as on cost limitations and other factors governing the project.

Legality is a final criterion that might be used to assess a job analysis method. Legality is the extent to which the job analysis procedure would be acceptable to the courts if it were used as evidence to support the personnel selection, training, performance appraisal, or pay practices of the organization.

An organization must make clear why a job analysis is being conducted and must use a method of analysis relevant for that purpose. The results of a job analysis should be used only for the purpose for which it was originally intended. By following these guidelines, the job analyst can ensure that the job analysis procedures will be acceptable from a legal perspective.

Process of Job Analysis – Various Steps Undertaken by Job Analysts, External Consultants and HR Managers

Job analysis supports the numerous HR functions, such as recruitment, selection, placement and induction, performance management, training and development, employee health and safety, and compensation. The job analysts, external consultants, and HR managers mainly conduct the job analysis.

The various steps involved in the job analysis process, are explained as follows:

Step # 1. Organizational Analysis:

Involves preparing a general outline of the various jobs presently existing in the organization. It consists of two main activities, organizing and planning for job analysis. The critical part of this step is to identify the objectives of job analysis and obtain the support of the top management. This step establishes the accountabilities for the overall job analysis, assigns the authorities to the relative persons, and spells out the roles and responsibilities clearly. It also involves setting up the time schedule and budget allocated for job analysis.

Step # 2. Preparing Job Analysis:

Consists of three major activities – identifying the representative jobs and the purpose for selection, evaluating existing job documentation, and conveying the process to the concerned managers or employees. The very first activity in this step is to conduct the need research. The job analyst determines the purpose and the extent of the job analysis.

The job analyst or the HR department then recognizes the jobs that need to be analyzed. These identified jobs are selected based on priority, while considering the cost and time constraints. The next step is obtaining information on the current job design by collecting the existing job description, specification, procedural guides, and system flow chart.

Step # 3. Conducting Job Analysis:

Involves two main activities, gathering job analysis data and evaluating and compiling the gathered data. The collected data consists of salient features of the job, the required educational and professional qualifications, and the behavior needed to perform the job effectively. There are several data collection techniques, such as observations, interviews, and questionnaires.

It is essential to ensure that the selected technique is reliable and appropriate enough to fulfill the purpose of data collection. The next activity in this step is the review of collected data on the parameters of accuracy, reliability, and relevance. After evaluating the obtained data, it is compiled so that meaningful information can be deduced. The jobs are sometimes redesigned after compiling the data, if required.

Step # 4. Preparing Job Description and Job Specification:

Includes three individual activities, such as drafting the job description and job specification, reviewing the draft with the managers and the employees, and finalizing the job description, job specification, and associated recommendations. The information gathered in the previous step is processed to develop the job description and job specification form. The job description portrays the subject matter of the job in terms of functions, activities, duties, and responsibilities to be performed.

It becomes necessary for the job holder to perform the duties, responsibilities, and activities included in the job description. On the other hand, job specification includes the minimum acceptable qualities or capabilities of the job holder. It describes the personal characteristics of the job holder, such as skills, qualifications, attitude, behavior, and experience, required to perform the job. A job analysis sheet usually contains the job description and job specification details of the job.

Step # 5. Maintaining and Updating Job Description and Job Specification:

Refers to managing and revising the job description and job specification over a period of time. It is essential to maintain and update the developed job description and job specification as and when the organization and business practices change. The job description and job specification so prepared remain effective and valid only if all the jobs are reviewed periodically, so that the discrepancies and shortcomings can be identified.