What is Job Evaluation and what it is not?

Work Study and in particular Time Study stipulates the expectations of work output with respect to time; Job Evaluation attempts to equitably relate the demands made by a job in its ‘normal’ performance (not the work output) and the position of the job in the hierarchical pay structure of the organization. Sometimes in addition to internal equity, market equity (external market pay rates) considerations have also to be brought in. In some other cases, for example in managerial jobs, the relative ranking of the jobs may be as important as the pay. Thus, in general, Job Evaluation is a disciplined attempt at establishing a justifiable ‘ranking order’ of the various jobs on an organization.

1. Job evaluation is concerned with job contents or demands of the job and not the ‘value’ of the job to the organization.
2. Job evaluation rates the job and not the man.
3. Job evaluation, despite any quantification, is a disciplined judgment about the hierarchical positioning of jobs.

Need for Job Evaluation:

The need for job evaluation arises due to the changes that consciously or unnoticeably take place in the job contents over a period of time due to a number of reasons including changes in technology, methods, procedures, systems and structure of the organization. With the recent rate of advances in technology, such as automation and computerization in various industrial and non-industrial operations, the conditions for work and the nature of work in many jobs may vary significantly in the future necessitating a job evaluation exercise. Moreover, the expectations exercise. Moreover, the expectations of the people change and various economic, social and cultural factors (and values) change over the years. The concepts of ‘Job difficulties’, ‘equitable pay’ and ‘equitable rank’ may, therefore, change significantly.

Basic Systems:

Job evaluation can be basically of two types:

1. Comparing a whole job against other jobs; and
2. Comparing compensable elements of the jobs to a predetermined yardstick.

Under the category of comparing a whole job, there are two basic methods:

1. Ranking System
2. Grading or classification System

In the category of comparing compensable elements there are two important systems:

3. Points system
4. Factor Comparison system

This article covers these four systems in some detail. Before that a point needs to be made: The basic input to job evaluation is a good analysis of the various jobs and job descriptions derived there from. Therefore, before we start the job evaluation procedure, it is essential to understand all the relevant factors working conditions, and other nuances of the jobs which are to be evaluated. Comprehensive, truthful and acceptable job descriptions are the foundation for a job evaluation procedure.

Rankling System:

The method under this system is as follows:

1. Given the job descriptions, decide which job will have the highest rank, which will have the lowest rank and which job will fall around the middle level. Since two extreme and one middle level job are to be identified, this should not be difficult
2. Next pick up any other job description and check whether it falls in the range AC or CB. Accordingly, its position is noted.
3. Pick up one more job description E and compare it with the earlier placed jobs to find out whether it falls in the zone AD, DC, or CB and note accordingly.
4. The procedure is continued till all jobs in the list exhausted. (Note: Each time the number of reference points gets larger).
5. Review the rankings, to iron out any wrinkles in the system.

Paired Comparison: A simpler method of ranking is paired Comparison. Compare a pair of jobs at a time and decide which one is the higher rank job (denoted H) and which one is the lower (denoted L). This pairing is done randomly, and the comparison (within a pair) is continued till one exhausts all the possible job pairs. The number of times a job has received H determines its rank in the top-to-down order.

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