Test Validation and Construction - CalHR

​Test Validation and Construction (TV&C) Program

The Test Validation and Construction (TV&C) Program provides professional expertise to decentralized departments in the development and validation of job-related selection procedures in accordance with the federal Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures, the Civil Rights Acts of 1964 and 1991, California Government Code, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the professionally accepted standards of the American Psychological Association.
 
TV&C provides departments with the highest quality selection-related materials and a demonstrated commitment to excellence and innovation. TV&C also offers technical and customized training, consultation, and a wide variety of selection-related products and services such as job analysis and exam development.
 
The mission of the TV&C Program is to promote merit, diversity, and equity in civil service employment, consistent with California State and federal laws.
 
TV&C Services

TV&C provides a variety of products for departments and agencies that allow you to hire the best and maximize your success.  To inquire about contracting with TV&C for these services, contact Christina Lopez at Christina.Lopez@calhr.ca.gov.

  • Job Analysis
  • Examination Planning and Consultation
  • Selection Instruments (Examinations)
  • Organizational Development Solutions
    • Performance Measures and Management
    • Training
    • Survey Research
    • Organizational Assessment and Change Implementation
    • Other Human Process Interventions

     

TV&C Resources for State HR Professionals

TV&C offers resources to assist you with meeting your department's hiring needs. 

  • Information on Statewide Examinations, including Tasks and KSAPCs for each classification
  • Useful Links
  • Frequently Asked Questions

 

TV&C Services

Job Analysis

The purpose of a job analysis is to identify the critical tasks and knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAPCs) needed for successful job performance. To ensure that the job analysis reflects actual tasks performed by incumbents, TV&C implements a content validation strategy to describe the content of the job. The content validation strategy will provide the information necessary to establish a link between job tasks and KSAPCs and selection-related processes and instruments (e.g., selection examinations, training objectives, performance appraisals). 
  
When you contract with TV&C, we provide your organization with a job analysis report. The report serves as a user-friendly reference for managers and employees. The job analysis results may be used for:
  • Selection protocol
  • Training programs
  • Performance management systems and employee development initiatives
  • Compensation
  • Strategic planning
  • Other uses (e.g., revision of class specification, organizational analysis, etc.)
 
Depending on the organization's situation and needs, TV&C can perform customized analyses such as examining differences between similar jobs. Also, by analyzing other organization-specific characteristics, we illuminate how departmental objectives are achieved. For example, if we see that a certain fraction of employees does not have the resources (e.g., credentials, training, equipment) to complete job tasks, we will call attention to the deficiency.  Explore further to learn about the many selection instruments designed to help you hire the most qualified candidates. 
 

Exam Development

1.  Does a department need to conduct a job analysis before administering an exam?
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.
2.  If the KSAPCs identified in the job analysis aren’t in the class specification can they be tested for?
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.
3.  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?
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.
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.
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
  

Examination planning and consultation

Here are some of the critical questions TV&C will help you address.

  • What is the best selection procedure for the job?
  • What laws do I have to be aware of?
  • What reference materials are most helpful?
  • What is the best way to validate a selection process?
  • What can I do to improve the recruitment process?
  • What sort of documentation do I need to accumulate?
 
Through careful planning, your projects are more likely to succeed and not interrupt the flow of work.
 

Selection INSTRUMENTS (examinations)

TV&C offers expertise in many employee selection instruments.

 

ASSESSMENT CENTERS

An assessment center is a method of evaluating candidates through the use of a battery of test procedures that assesses the level of expertise and possession of requisite knowledge, skills, and abilities. Test components comprising an assessment center may include structured interviews, role-play exercises, writing exercises, group exercises, and written examinations. Assessment centers may be used for a multitude of job classifications; however, they traditionally have been used for managerial/supervisory assessment. Using this method, employers have the opportunity to observe many candidate competencies.

 

BIODATA INSTRUMENTS

By collecting the right biographical data, the employer possesses a useful tool for predicting job success. The method relies on an applicant's past and present circumstances. Biodata questions are typically multiple choice questions concerning work attitudes, achievements in work settings, education, life experiences, vocational interests, team orientation and other job relevant characteristics.

 

MINIMUM QUALIFICATION REQUIREMENT (MQ) 

Are you able to defend the education, experience or other requirements for a classification? Are they robust to critical scrutiny? How do you decide the appropriate minimum qualifications? The principles of reliability and validity are still important with MQ's. We can assist you in determining these critical decision rules.

 

SITUATIONAL JUDGMENT TEST (AKA: LOW-FIDELITY SIMULATION)

A situational judgment test (SJT) typically presents applicants with a job-related scenario. The applicants then choose an appropriate course of action to indicate how they would deal with such situations or what actions they would take in response to the hypothetical situations. Responses can be either verbal or written (e.g., multiple choice). These tests are particularly well suited for aptitudes requiring decision-making.
 
SJTs that are administered in video format are known as video-based tests. With this method, on-the-job scenarios are depicted. Candidates are asked a series of questions about how they would react to or handle the situation. Candidates could be questioned via multiple choice items (which could be machine scored), open-ended essay, short answer questions, rated in an interview, or role-play situation. Scoring in a video-based test is based on predetermined scoring criteria.

 

SUPPLEMENTAL APPLICATIONS (INCLUDING TRAINING & EXPERIENCE EXAMINATIONS)

A supplemental application is made up of questions designed to evaluate a candidate's job-related training, education, experience, accomplishments, knowledge, skills, and abilities. Advantages for requiring the submission of a pre-designed supplemental application is that the employer does not have to administer it, and therefore can eliminate non-qualified candidates without a large cost. The questions may elicit short or narrative responses. A solid job analysis and valid scoring system are critical components of this method.

 

STRUCTURED INTERVIEWS     

A structured interview is a formal, systematic, and standardized interview process in which all candidates are asked the same pre-established, job-related questions in the same order. The use of an interview panel is encouraged to increase reliability. The panel evaluates the candidates' responses using a pre-defined scoring guide which consists of benchmark answers and anchored rating scales. Flexibility is one of the hallmarks of interviews. Questions can be asked in a variety of ways and on many topics. With a structured interview, the users are essentially deciding beforehand what questions to ask (based on a job analysis), and how to score the responses. Some interview questions require the candidate to contemplate in front of the panel and articulate a solution. This allows the panel to observe the candidate's reasoning and public speaking abilities.

 

WORK SAMPLE/PERFORMANCE EXAMINATIONS

Work samples are a broad class of assessment techniques that replicate job tasks and/or job behavior, are administered in a standardized manner, and allow for the observation of candidate behavior in performing the prescribed tasks. Several examples are described below.

  •  In an in-basket exercise, candidates are presented with a variety of job-related materials (e.g., memos, correspondence, phone messages and other items) that are of varying importance and priority. Candidates are given a predetermined period of time in which to review, prioritize, and make decisions about handling the materials. Candidates may respond to the in-basket items by actually taking action or indicating what actions they would take on the job. The candidate's performance is scored using predetermined scoring criteria. The scoring process may be accomplished by multiple choice questions, a paper review of the candidates' actual or indicated actions, a rating of the candidate's actions, or an interview requiring that the candidates explain the actions they would take.
  •  A writing skills assessment is a work sample test in which candidates are typically assigned to provide a written response to a specific situation or set of facts.* Candidates may be given job-related materials and documents upon which to base their written response. Candidate responses may be scored on content and/or writing skill mechanics. These responses are hand-scored by subject matter experts using predetermined scoring criteria.  *It should be noted that writing skills could also be assessed via a multiple-choice format. 
  • Verbal work samples involve a problem situation requiring language skills (written or verbal) and may include interaction with people. There are numerous designs, such as role-play exercises or oral presentation examinations. 
  • A performance test is a category of motor work sample tests where there is some physical activity or the physical manipulation of things. This includes tests of physical skills and/or abilities. In some physical ability tests, there are several events for candidates to complete in sequence. Physical ability test events are closely modeled after the actual tasks done on the job.

 

WRITTEN EXAMINATIONS

A written examination is a testing procedure in which a candidate's job-related knowledge, skills, abilities and other characteristics (e.g., personality, customer service orientation, adaptability, etc.) are assessed through the use of a variety of item formats. There are several advantages of using a written examination format. The format offers a comprehensive way to assess job knowledge, understanding of principles, problem-solving ability, and the ability to recommend appropriate action (e.g., as in a written Situational Judgment Test). With the ability to score by computer, written examinations are cost-effective for large groups. Writing quality items and developing solid rating scales can be difficult. TV&C incorporates many item development principles to increase fairness, clarity, and validity.

 

Organization Development Solutions

Organization Development (OD) concerns planning and implementing change by diagnosing a problem or situation through systematic investigation, designing interventions, managing change and evaluating and institutionalizing interventions. Organizational change is about initiating changes in culture or processes based on the application of behavioral science knowledge to reinforce organizational strategies and increase effectiveness. 

TV&C's principle goals for these types of projects are to assist employers in implementing and managing change while enhancing the resilience of newly implemented procedures. The level of change effort ranges from a division or work group to an entire system. The issue may involve processes associated with leadership, group dynamics, work design, strategy, culture or other areas. It is a flexible and adaptive process to sedulously diagnose and solve organizational problems and improve overall performance.
 
Our approach is to build trusting relationships, clarify outcomes, frame realistic expectations, and identify the boundary of systems to be changed. TV&C will partner with your staff to identify critical success factors for the intervention, recognize what is relevant, determine an appropriate data collection process, and involve participants so they begin to own the process. TV&C will discover how data from different parts of the system impact each other, stay focused on the purpose of the consultation, and prepare the leadership for the truth.
 

Performance Measures and Management

  • A thorough understanding of the position under evaluation - Effective performance management begins with valid performance measurement tools. The essential element of successful performance management is a structured evaluation based on a thorough understanding of the knowledge, skills, abilities and other characteristics (i.e., job analysis) of the position. TV&C specializes in creating job analyses which can be used for a variety of purposes (e.g., performance evaluation, selection procedures, position classification, etc.).
  • Content Validity and Fairness Perceptions of the Performance Management System - TV&C will work with organizations to develop an evaluation in accordance with legal requirements for job-relatedness and content validity. TV&C staff also possesses knowledge of methods supported by professional standards and applied research for the development performance evaluations. This takes into account employee fairness perceptions of the evaluation procedure, thus, potentially lowering the liability for grievances and lawsuits surrounding the evaluation procedure.
  • Implementation and training on the use of evaluations - A well-developed performance evaluation is of no use if it is improperly administered. Training is provided to evaluators on data collection techniques, employee performance observation and documentation, goal setting, and employee feedback discussions.
  • Listed below are some of the types of performance evaluations on which TV&C can offer consultation:
    • Behaviorally Anchored Rating Scales - This type of evaluation links specific examples of behaviors to points along a rating scale. With the help of subject matter experts (i.e., job incumbents), TV&C can identify work behavior at various levels of competency for job-related knowledge, skills, and abilities.
    • 360 Degree Feedback - This comprehensive evaluation offers multi-source feedback from the evaluated employees, subordinates, peers, supervisors, and possibly even customers or clients.
    • Employee Self-Rating/Supervisor Feedback - This evaluation holds the employee accountable for keeping track of his/her progress. The employee self-rates and offers evidence in the form of work behaviors and/or completed projects to justify ratings. Employee and supervisor meet to discuss agreement on results, possible obstacles, areas for improvement and employee goals.
    • Customized Supervisory Evaluation - Specific evaluations can be created which assess supervisory and/or managerial skills.
    • Team Evaluation - Team project development and outcome can be assessed with a specialized evaluation which distinguishes each group member's role and contribution to the organization's goals and/or projects. This type of evaluation can also assess communication, coordination, planning, and other important aspects of group dynamics.
    • Project Management Evaluation - For highly important and/or reoccurring projects, TV&C can develop a specialized evaluation which monitors the management, development, and end result. Feedback from this type of evaluation can tell an employer precise areas of the project management process which need improvement.  
    • Organizational Goal Development and Communication - A key component of performance management is to have a solid understanding of the organization's objectives and to effectively communicate those objectives to employees. TV&C staff can provide assistance in identifying organization goals, operationally defining those objectives, and translating them into performance and/or training objectives for individuals. By clearly defining each employee's role in the organization and designing a system of checks and balances, organizational goals should be easier to attain.

 

Training

Quite often human resource consulting services are offered as a "quick fix" to an organization's problems. Unfortunately, the tendency of contracting to fix an organization's immediate problem, by solving it and moving on, does not always have a lasting effect. As a unit within the California State Personnel Board, TV&C's purpose is twofold. TV&C's mission is to 1) assist other state departments in the development of valid and defensible employment practices (e.g., examinations, job analyses, training objectives, performance evaluations, etc.), and 2) offer continuing advice, training, and consultation in order to teach departments' personnel staffs to develop their own future employment practices using professionally accepted standards.

A significant indication of TV&C's commitment to sharing expertise is Test Talk. Test Talk is a free training offered every other month to other state agencies. In addition, TV&C staff participate as trainers in some of the Technical Training sessions for the Selection Analyst Training Program offered by the State Personnel Board. TV&C can also develop customized training session for various departmental needs.

 

Survey Research

By measuring behaviors or gauging attitudes, values and other characteristics through survey methods, an organization can come to a better understanding of the activities or perspectives of specific groups influencing business processes (i.e., employees, customers). Are there specific aspects of organizational culture that you need to know more about? Would you like to know more about the attitudes of your customers? What about the job satisfaction of current employees? Surveys administered before and after a change process can possibly show the effectiveness of a program. By hiring professionals trained in survey research, you can avoid many pitfalls and collect more meaningful information about the workforce. TV&C customizes surveys to fit the employer's needs, or work the methodology into other projects (e.g., attitudes about the performance appraisal system). 

 

Organizational Assessment and Change Implementation 

Work place problems and issues are unfortunately a reality for most, if not all, organizations. The potential causes of the problems can often be elusive and difficult for the employer to detect. Through a careful organizational assessment, TV&C can help organizations identify work place issues. Typically, this process may involve a survey of employees, analysis of organizational records, and/or interviews with employees. TV&C will then work with the organization to develop, refine, and implement a solution. Our measurement expertise is important for proactive agencies that identify and track the important organizational performance outcomes and their predictive factors.

Our Approach is to distill recommendations from the data, consider creative alternatives, facilitate a participative decision-making process, and focus action that generates high impact at lowest cost. Given the organization's specific problem or situation, our primary objective is to co-create an implementation plan that is concrete, rooted in the data, simple, and clear. Our approach is to identify your organizational issues and determine a solution that is results-oriented, measurable, and rewards successful job performance. The following is an example outline of a possible organizational dilemma:

A. Organization Problems 

  • Low quality work: other departments are complaining about the poor work coming out of this unit.
  • Low quality customer service: customers/clients who call have complained that they are treated badly and have not been able to successfully conduct business with the department.

 B. Identify the causes

  • Interviews with managerial staff, discussion of problem, obtain more accurate view of issue at hand. 
  • Interviews with/survey of Administrative Services staff, obtain more accurate view from staff's perspective. 
  • Review of employee records: attendance, productivity statistics, work products, phone policy, customer service training program in place, organization charts, etc. 
  • Identification of at-issue employees, job shadowing, observation, etc.

 C. Recommendations and Implementation

  • Detailed outline of problem and causes
  • Suggested changes:
    • Management work product-tracking procedure: detailed procedure to follow the progress of employee work product development in order to catch problems and teach employee to fix them.
    • Sample work products: work product sample binder for quick and easy employee reference to examples of high quality work products.
    • Targeted training: customer service and quality of work training for at-issue employees.
    • TV&C works with management to implement recommendation.

 

Additional Human Process Interventions

This broad area of organization development activity focuses on interpersonal relations and social dynamics that occur in work groups. A consultation may consist of research on various roles of employees, teamwork, communication, conflict, stress, and an assessment of productivity and group dynamics. Based on systematic study of the issue in question, we will partner with you in planning and implementing the right course of action. 

 

Leadership and managerial competencies are crucial in virtually all work environments. TV&C will identify the meaningful personal and situational factors that influence the effectiveness of leadership in your circumstance and create a viable action plan. Also, within the next ten years there will be significant numbers of retirements from the workforce. A major implication is the prospect of a leadership void, and developing the next generation of leaders is a substantial challenge. We delve into issues such as coaching, conflict and stress management, mentoring, and other developmental concerns.

 

Our consultations are characterized by establishing methods to monitor change after the intervention, paying attention to movement back to old behaviors, and being sure customers and stakeholders are satisfied with results. TV&C consultants are good listeners and consistently maintain confidentiality.

 

TV&C Resources for State HR Professionals

Test talk

Test Talk features a monthly presentation by TV&C staff, followed by an open discussion forum where we hear from you! This is an opportunity to share the successes and challenges of testing and selection from different agencies. Each session will continue to be an opportunity to expand our collective testing expertise and network with other testing professionals.
 
Where: TBD
Time: TBD
Cost: FREE
 
No registration is necessary. Simply bring your curiosity and your desire to grow professionally. Webinar and teleconference options are available: please contact TV&C to obtain the details.
 

Schedule of Topics and Dates*

 
*TBD 
 
*Dates are subject to change.

TV&C LAB

TV&C LAB is a three-day  training series designed to enhance the knowledge and expertise of testing professionals within the State. With a hands-on instructional format, this unique training provides you with the opportunity to develop and expand your competencies within the field. Labs are structured to guide you through conducting a job analysis and developing a structured interview from start to finish for a hypothetical classification.
 
Where: TBD
Time: TBD
 
Registration is required and spaces are limited. Please send your reservation form TVC Lab Registration Form.pdfTVC Lab Registration Form_CalHR.pdf  to Alejandra Saldana at Alejandra.Saldana@calhr.ca.gov.
.
 

Schedule of Topics and Dates* 

 
*TBD
 

 *Dates are subject to change.  TV&C reserves the right to deny admission to any participant.

conducting a job analysis

The typical steps associated with the job analysis process are listed below. Each step is congruent with professional guidelines and legal standards. Not all steps are required in all cases. Additional explanation and rationale can be provided if needed to clarify each of these steps and associated tasks.

1. Review Background Information

  • Conduct project planning meeting(s)

  • Identify and review relevant literature, research, etc.

2.  Develop Job Content and Structure

  • Interviews with incumbents and supervisors (i.e., subject matter experts [SMEs])

  • Develop job audit questionnaire for interviews 

  • Conduct interviews with SMEs

  • Transcribe and organize interview information

  • Develop preliminary list of task and knowledge, skill, and ability (KSAPCs) statements

3. Review Task and KSAPC Statements:

  • Conduct meeting(s) with SMEs

  • Revise task and KSAPC statements

4. Construct Job Analysis Questionnaire:

  • Develop demographic items and rating scales

  • Prepare draft questionnaire

  • Pilot questionnaire, if needed

  • Prepare final questionnaire

5. Distribute Job Analysis Questionnaire:

  • Determine sampling plan

  • Identify data entry format

  • Analyze job analysis questionnaire information

  • Enter/scan data

  • Perform statistical analyses of questionnaire data

6. Review Job Analysis Results:

  • Conduct meeting with subject matter experts to review job analysis results

  • Complete task/knowledge, skill,  ability, and personal characteristic linkage

  • Identify content areas to assess

  • Develop description of job

7. Prepare Job Analysis Report:

  • Prepare and review draft of report with management team

  • Revise report, as needed

  • Prepare final/camera-ready copy of report

Job Analysis Templates and Resources 

  

resource links 

Research Resources

Professional Organizations (Local)
Professional Organizations (National)
Federal Governmental Agencies
Local Governmental Agencies

 

frequently asked questions (FAQ) 

Job Analysis

1.  What is a job analysis? 

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.

2.  Why conduct a job analysis?

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:

  • The use of sound, job-related examination processes and individual selection procedures developed on job analytic data.
  • The use of the appropriate selection procedures to assess those KSAPCs identified as important for successful job performance and required-upon-entry to the job.
  • Documentation linking the content of the examination process and its individual selection procedures to the content requirements of the job classification.

 

3.  What is a job analysis used for?

A job analysis is used to support employment decisions such as:

  • Training
  • Personnel Selection
  • Performance Appraisal
  • Recruitment
  • Screening
  • Workforce Planning
  • Workplace Accommodation
  • Appeals 

4.  Who is qualified to conduct a job analysis?

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.

5.  How is a job analysis conducted?

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.

6.  What sources provide guidelines for conducting job analyses?

  • The Uniform Guidelines of Employee Selection Procedures promotes a uniform set of principles to help employers comply with Federal laws that prohibit discrimination.
  • Professional Standard provides assessment professionals with guidelines for the evaluation, development, and use of testing instruments
  • The Society of Industrial/Organizational Psychology’s Principles
  • The American Psychological Associations Standards

7.  Should tasks be eliminated if the importance of the task is rated high but the frequency is low?

Typically, only those tasks that are performed most frequently and are most 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 awhile, it is still an important ability to have. Therefore, analysts will have to use discretion regarding tasks with high importance but low frequency.

8.  Who is considered a subject matter expert (SME)?

SMEs are people who have a thorough knowledge of the work behaviors, activities, responsibilities, and the prerequisite KSAPCS 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.

9.  How many task statements are necessary to describe a job?

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, abilities, and personal characteristics (KSAPCs).

10.  What does KSAPC stand for?

The acronym KSAPC stands for Knowledge, Skill, Ability and Personal Characteristics.

11.  What is the difference between abilities and skills?

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.

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.

12.  What should be done to a KSAPC that is deemed important, but not required upon entry?

Any KSAPC that is deemed important, but not required upon entry is still an important job qualification. Although these KSAPCs 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.

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?

When a task or a KSAPC 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.

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 KSAPC 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.

14.  How long does it take to complete a job analysis?

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.

15.  Is the job analysis material confidential?

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.

 

 

Contact 

 

 Christina Lopez, Christina.Lopez@calhr.ca.gov, (916) 323-0860


Updated 3/20/2014