Functional Job Analysis (FJA)

FJA is a worker oriented job analysis approach that attempts to describe the whole person on the job. It tries to examine the fundamental components of data people and things. There are five steps to be followed:

1) the first involves the identification of the organization’s goals for the FJA analysis . This analysis describes what should be, as well as what is:
2) The second step is the identification and descriptions of tasks , wherein tasks are defined as actions . The tasks, actions may be physical (operating a computer), mental, (analyzing data) or interpersonal (consulting another person) . The task statements developed in FJA must conform to a specific written format.
3) The third step deals with analysis of tasks. Each task is analyzed using 7 scales. These include three worker function scales of reasoning, mathematics and language.
4) In the fourth step, the analysts develops performance standards to assess the results of a worker’s task.
5) The final step deals with the development of training content needed by the job holder.

FJA is frequently used for government jobs. It provides a quantitative score of each job as a function of its complexity in relationship with people, data and things. The results are helpful in fixing wage rates and in developing employee succession plans. On the negative side, FJA takes a lot of time . Training in its use may mean considerable investment of money.

Which method to follow?

Experts agree that the choice of job analysis method depends upon the purposes to be served by the data. There is no one best way to conduct a job analysis. Wherever possible multiple methods of job analysis must be followed. A quantitative approach like Position Analysis questionnaire (PAG) should be supported by a qualitative approach like Critical Incident Technique (CIT)

Impact of behavioral factors on job analysis

While carrying out the job analysis, managers must take note of certain strong behavioral responses from the employees. Employees may not always like the idea of someone taking a hard look at their jobs. Let’s examine the reasons behind such negative responses more closely.

Exaggerate the facts: Employees and managers, many exaggerate the importance and significance of their jobs during interviews, because job analysis information is used for compensation purposes, both managers and employees hope that puffing up their jobs will result in higher pay levels.

Employees anxieties: Most employees fear that job analysis efforts may put them in a strait jacket curbing their initiative and latitude to perform . Another reason for the negative attitude is the feeling that as long as someone does not know precisely what I am supposed to be doing then I am safe. A searching examination of jobs may uncover employees faults which might have escaped the employer’s attention so far.

Resistance to change: When jobs change in tune with changes in technology, there is an urgent need to revise job descriptions and job specifications to make them more meaningful. This would have a significant impact on the safe and secure job worlds in which employees used to live comfortably. Employees resist such changes because when jobs are redefined they may have to handle difficult tasks and shoulder painful responsibilities. To ward off such threats managers must involve employees in the revision process, clearly stating the reasons for incorporating the latest changes.

Over emphasis on current efforts: Job analysis efforts should not place heavy emphasis on what the employees are currently doing. Some employees may be gifted with unique capabilities and given a chance they may expand the scope of the job and assume more responsibilities . The company may have difficulty in finding someone like that person if he or she were to leave the company. Therefore the job description and job specifications should not be merely a description of what the person currently filling the job does.

Source: HRM VSP

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