Developing Position Descriptions
A position description is required for each Civil Service position that exists at the University. It is created by the department when a new position is being established, and revised and updated whenever an existing position has changed significantly. The position description serves as the official record of duties and responsibilities assigned to a position, and the competencies (skills, knowledge and abilities) required to successfully perform the job.
A position description is essential to determine the appropriate classification, set clear job expectations, assist supervisors and employees with setting goals and objectives, and manage employees' job performance effectively. It also provides necessary information for recruitment and selection, and is helpful in developing orientation/training programs and ensuring consistency and equity among positions.
A common misconception is that the class specification and position description are one in the same. Position descriptions, along with class specifications, are both used to assign positions to the appropriate classification. The class specification is used as a guide to determine the appropriate classification based on the nature, level, and concentration of the duties and responsibilities appearing on the position description. While it is unnecessary for every characteristic duty listed on the class specification to occur in any single job, it is acceptable that not every job duty be listed as a characteristic duty on the class specification.
In accordance with State Universities Civil Service System requirements for developing the position description, Staff Human Resources (SHR) has implemented general guidelines and instructions for the required position description format for use by supervisors and/or administrative staff that are responsible for writing position descriptions. Copies of current position descriptions signed by both the incumbent and immediate supervisor will be kept on file in employing units and in the Staff Human Resources office (University Policy and Rules 3.01).
Submit a Position Description to SHR:
- To establish a new position
- To post a vacant position
- Upon filling a position and obtaining both the incumbent and immediate supervisor signatures
- To update an existing position if the duties and responsibilities have changed significantly, and are continuing
- To transfer a person to another position within a section, department or unit
- To complete a request for a reclassification (position audit)
- After the yearly review during the annual performance evaluation
Position Descriptions are:
- Prepared by the supervisor and/or incumbent
- Developed using the required Position Description Format
- Signed and dated by the incumbent and immediate supervisor
- Provided to the incumbent
- Reviewed yearly during the incumbent's annual performance evaluation
- University Policy and Rule 3.01 – Position Descriptions
- University Policy and Rule 3.02 – Position Reviews
- University Policy and Rule 2.06 - Work Reassignments
- Civil Service System, Procedure Manuals, Rule 2.2 - Job Descriptions