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Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Do we need a job analysis to support our exam?Do we need a job analysis to support our exam?<p>​Yes.</p>
How many SMEs (subject matter experts) do we need for a job analysis meeting?How many SMEs (subject matter experts) do we need for a job analysis meeting?<p>​Eight to 10, or a representative sample based on geographic locations, shifts, length of time at job, work unit, etc.</p>
How many task and KSA (knowledge, skills, and abilities) statements do we need for a job analysis?How many task and KSA (knowledge, skills, and abilities) statements do we need for a job analysis?<p>​As many as are necessary to really capture the job on paper. Generally anywhere from 40-100 statements, for both tasks and KSAs, depending on the complexity of the particular classification.</p>
16. Does a department need to conduct a job analysis before administering an exam?16. Does a department need to conduct a job analysis before administering an exam?<p>​ Yes, the Selection Manual states that the job analysis shall serve as the primary basis for demonstrating and documenting the job-relatedness of examination processes conducted for the establishment of eligibility lists within the State’s civil service. Every examination developed by a department should be based on a properly conducted job analysis.Yes, the Selection Manual states that the job analysis shall serve as the primary basis for demonstrating and documenting the job-relatedness of examination processes conducted for the establishment of eligibility lists within the State’s civil service. Every examination developed by a department should be based on a properly conducted job analysis.</p>
17. If the KSAPCs identified in the job analysis aren’t in the class specification can they be tested for?17. If the KSAPCs identified in the job analysis aren’t in the class specification can they be tested for?<p>​It is CalHR's policy that KSAPCs used in examination development should fall under the intent and scope of the KSAPCs presented in the class specification. The class specification KSAPCs were written to be intentionally broad so that they would not be limiting. If it is discovered through a job analysis that the class specification no longer represents that job, then a revision of the class specification is recommended. In the case of a servicewide classification, this process should include collaboration from the other agencies that use the class.</p>
18. Can an employer be sued for administering an exam that is derived from an inadequate job analysis or from an exam that was not derived from a job analysis at all?18. Can an employer be sued for administering an exam that is derived from an inadequate job analysis or from an exam that was not derived from a job analysis at all?<p style="text-align:left;">​If the content validation approach was used, then yes. Departments must verify legal defensibility of selection processes. The Uniform Guidelines of Employee Selection Procedures requirements for conducting job analyses include identifying the critical work behaviors or tasks and KSAPCs that comprise successful performance of the job. Only those tasks and KSAPCs deemed important should be used as the basis of selection. Furthermore, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1965 specifically prohibits making any employment-related decisions based on an employee’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. The Act further prohibits the use of a selection procedure that results in adverse impact unless the employer can demonstrate the job-relatedness of such a procedure.</p><p style="text-align:left;"> The passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in 1990 further emphasized the importance of conducting job analyses by requiring employers to evaluate candidates’ capabilities to perform the essential functions of the job. The ADA considers the preparation of a written description (job analysis) of the essential functions before advertising or interviewing applicants as evidence of those essential functions. By adhering to the principles of the Uniform Guidelines and the requirements of relevant case law, job analyses enable organizations to make valid and cost effective employment-related decisions while avoiding potential lawsuits.</p><p style="text-align:left;">The penalty for disregarding the validation requirements for selection instruments can be costly. A job analysis will help verify that selection procedures are defensible, which makes it imperative that departments conduct sound job analyses.</p>
01. What is a job analysis? 01. What is a job analysis? <p>​A job analysis is typically defined as a comprehensive, rigorous approach to identifying and describing the important aspects of a job. While the definitions of job analysis vary in detail and level of specificity, they share their emphasis of systematically analyzing and evaluating the important aspects of a job. The primary goal is to describe work behaviors in performing the job, along with the essential requirements of the job.</p>
02. Why conduct a job analysis?02. Why conduct a job analysis?<p>​Collecting job analysis data guarantees that an organization has the most reliable and up-to-date information about a job from which to make and legally defend important employment and management decisions. CalHR adopted Article 3.5, Section 50 in Title 2 of the California Code of Regulations which references the Merit Selection Manual. The Selection Manual provides exam analysts with the standards for decentralized departmental examination programs:<br>· The use of sound, job-related examination processes and individual selection procedures developed on job analytic data.<br>· The use of the appropriate selection procedures to assess those KSAs identified as important for successful job performance and required-upon-entry to the job.<br>· Documentation linking the content of the examination process and its individual selection procedures to the content requirements of the job classification.</p>
03. What is a job analysis used for?03. What is a job analysis used for?<p>​<br>A job analysis is used to support employment decisions such as:<br>· Training<br>· Personnel Selection<br>· Performance Appraisal<br>· Recruitment<br>· Screening<br>· Workforce Planning<br>· Workplace Accommodation<br>· Appeals </p>
04. Who is qualified to conduct a job analysis?04. Who is qualified to conduct a job analysis?<p>​A job analysis may be conducted by a human resources representative, a trained job analyst/consultant, or someone who is familiar with job analysis procedures.</p>
05. How is a job analysis conducted?05. How is a job analysis conducted?<p>A job analysis is a multi-step process and several tasks must be completed before arriving at a final product. There is no one correct procedure or method for a job analysis. However, there are several guided steps that should be taken by all job analysts to ensure quality standards and legal defensibility.</p>
06. What sources provide guidance for conducting job analyses?06. What sources provide guidance for conducting job analyses?<p>· <a href="http://www.uniformguidelines.com/uniformguidelines.html" target="_blank">The Uniform Guidelines of Employee Selection Procedures </a>promotes a uniform set of principles to help employers comply with Federal laws that prohibit discrimination.<br>· <a href="http://www.siop.org/history/crsppp.aspx" target="_blank">The Society of Industrial/Organizational Psychology’s Principles </a><br>· <a href="http://www.apa.org/ethics/code/" target="_blank">The American Psychological Associations Standards</a></p>
07. Should tasks be eliminated if the importance of the task is rated high but the frequency is low?07. Should tasks be eliminated if the importance of the task is rated high but the frequency is low?<p>​Typically, only those tasks that are performed most frequently and rated as important, are termed as being critical. However, there are still important tasks that are performed infrequently. Take for example, the ability of a police officer to fire a gun. Although this task may be performed only once in a while, it is still an important ability to possess. Therefore, analysts will have to use discretion regarding tasks with high importance but low frequency.</p>
08. Who is considered a subject matter expert (SME)?08. Who is considered a subject matter expert (SME)?<p>​SMEs are people who have a thorough knowledge of the work behaviors, activities, responsibilities, and the prerequisite KSAs for effective job performance. The SMEs should include persons who are fully knowledgeable about relevant organizational characteristics such as shift, location, type of equipment used, and so forth. This typically includes people at the current classification level or higher and supervisors that are familiar with the classification. SMEs can also be people who were previously part of the classification.</p>
09. How many task statements are necessary to describe a job?09. How many task statements are necessary to describe a job?<p>​According to the book “Job Analysis” written by Michael T. Brannick and Edward L. Levine (2002), the number of task statements necessary to describe a job is generally 30 to 100 tasks, organized into 5 to 12 major duty or function categories. Brannick and Levine further recommend that if the number of tasks is substantially more than 100, similar tasks should be combined whenever possible to reduce the number back to 100 or less. The authors advocate the same range of statements when compiling knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) statement lists.</p>
10. What does KSAPC stand for?10. What does KSAPC stand for?<p>​The acronym KSAPC stands for Knowledge, Skill, Ability and Personal Characteristics, aka KSAs.</p>
11. What is the difference between abilities and skills?11. What is the difference between abilities and skills?<p>​Unfortunately, there is no professional or academic consensus regarding the definition of skills and abilities within a job analysis. Naming conventions change across professionals, and such naming conventions can be interchanged.<br>TV&C, however, utilizes a specific definition that closely ties to that stated in the Uniform Guidelines on Fair Employment and Selection. Abilities are defined as a present competence to perform an observable behavior or a behavior that results in an observable product. Abilities typically require knowledge, and describe the capacity to perform cognitive activities. For example, one may have the ability to balance accounts using generally accepted accounting principles. A skill is an observable competency to perform a learned psychomotor act which requires a degree of precision. For example, the skill to type 45 words per minute is a psychomotor behavior with a degree of precision. It is easy to identify a skill under this definition because of the manual manipulation that it involves, but definitions vary. In general, utilizing the definition in one way or another will not compromise the integrity of the job analysis.</p>
12. What should be done to a KSA that is deemed important, but not required upon entry?12. What should be done to a KSA that is deemed important, but not required upon entry?<p>​Any KSA that is deemed important, but not required upon entry is still an important job qualification. Although these KSAs are not appropriate to be used in the examination process, it can provide valuable information in other areas such as training and development of performance evaluation dimensions.</p>
13. What do you do when statements are removed from the final job analysis due to their ratings, but the subject matter experts (SMEs) are resistant and would like to keep them?13. What do you do when statements are removed from the final job analysis due to their ratings, but the subject matter experts (SMEs) are resistant and would like to keep them?<p>​When a task or a KSA statement is removed from the job analysis, it does not necessarily imply that they are unimportant to job incumbents or to specialized job assignments. Rather, it implies that they do not generalize well enough to be considered as representative of the job position overall, or that they may not be expected upon entry to the job.<br>It may be best to conceive of scale cut-off scores as guides with some room for interpretation/analysis. Nevertheless, if the data clearly indicate that one or more KSA statements should not be used for the purpose of developing selection instruments, then they should not be included based on verbal input from subject matter experts alone.</p>
14. How long does it take to complete a job analysis?14. How long does it take to complete a job analysis?<p>​The time it takes to complete a job analysis depends on many factors, including the size of the classification, resources, geographical locations of worksites, availability and number of subject matter experts, etc. Therefore, there is no general timeframe for how long a job analysis will take to complete. Contact TV&C to discuss possible job analysis timelines based on organizational needs.</p>
15. Is the job analysis material confidential?15. Is the job analysis material confidential?<p>​Job analysis data is not confidential and individual departments are welcome to share job analysis information/data with other departments. Therefore, it is not necessary for participants to complete security forms or clearances. However, once discussion crosses into examination development, all information is confidential; participants will need to sign appropriate security and confidentiality agreements. Similarly, since incumbents can share sensitive information regarding their jobs, it is imperative that analysts be respectful during this process. Although the information shared is not technically confidential, it should not be able to be linked back to any one individual. This helps to encourage incumbents to openly discuss and share information regarding the true nature of their job tasks, knowledge, skills, and abilities that they might not otherwise share if they are aware that their responses are not confidential. </p>

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