Organizational Structure

HRM 500 Week 6 Assignment 2: Organizational Structure

HRM 500

Professor Alberta Thrash


Organizational Structure

A major role of Human Resource Management is performing job analysis. Job analysis is a structured and detailed study of a job role. It is centered on a systematic analysis of the job to identify all relevant facts about that job. Through observation as well as studying the tasks associated with a job, which may include constraints, span of control, equipment used, skills and attitudes required to successfully complete the task, a job can be specifically defined. The concept behind job analysis is to completely and thoroughly define a job in order to identify and hire the right person for a given job. This ensures that the employees are aligned with the company values and they are able to achieve target goals most important to the company’s requirements. Included in job analysis there are three core elements, which are described as follows.

Job Description–This consists of a work ready written record of the contents of a specific job role. Job description describes in detail what is to be done, how it is to be done, and how that job fits in the bigger picture i.e. workflow. The job description document is important in that it helps to identify the job and provides a brief description of what the job is. It should be descriptive and fully define the purpose and scope of the position. Within the job description there are five main sections – (1) Job Tile (2) Job Summary (3) Job duties and responsibilities (4) Working Conditions (5) Machines, tools and equipment involved. In short it defines what is expected in a job and how that job is performed.

Job Specification – This is a brief statement of the minimum required personal qualities required for the effective performance of a position. It is a record of the physical, mental, social, psychological and, behavioral characteristics which an employee must possess in order to effectively perform a job. These different and required traits will fall into three separate categories. (1) Essential qualities that an applicant must possess (2) Qualities that a person should possess (3) Indicators or negative qualities that could become a handicap to effective job performance.

Job Context – The context in a job description describes the factors of a job in employees surrounding environment. This includes physical conditions, location, social environment and what type of supervision is included with the job. Basically it describes the complete environment in which the job will be performed.

These three elements of job description are very important when hiring, selecting and developing employees for a job. A thorough job analysis assists a talent acquisition team within a company in that it provides a good understanding to perspective candidates about what the job is and what would be expected of them. It also assists management within the company with creating meaningful job performance requirements. Additionally it assists training with content preparation and the basis for evaluation at the end of onboard training. Due to the multiple and many levels within a company that the job description directly affects it is crucial that the job description be accurate and reliable.

Job Analysis Approaches

There are many approaches a HRM staff can take to conducting a job analysis. One such approach is a Position Analysis Questionnaire or PAQ. Essentially what the PAQ consists of is a questionnaire completed by current employees who are holding the position within the organization which is being analyzed. The current employee is tasked with describing their duties and responsibilities in detail. The PAQ was developed by McCormick, Jeanneret and Mecham in 1972. They developed it in order to measure and qualify the job characteristics and how it relates to human characteristics. There is a standardized form the questionnaire they developed that consists of 195 elements which help to find the general characteristics of a particular position and required skills required to full fill the job effectively and efficiently. The PAQ plays a very important role in performing a job analysis, especially for jobs that have not yet been fully defined. There are some very key advantages of having or implementing a questionnaire of this type.

In today’s modern market place the customer service position is more important and critical than ever before. There is now an unprecedented ability for the consumer to communicate directly with the company which means that the customer service representative can define the relationship the consumer has with that company. The PAQ can be used with a customer service position effectively to design and specify the behavioral and technical requirements of a job. These means that an HRM manager can hire the right person for the job the first time. Additionally it provides an effective way for the customer service managers with bridging the gap between the existing and expected skills and knowledge of a current employee in order to provide more effective training.

  1. It is a standardized format of questionnaire that is easy to apply and measure.
  2. It can be used in multiple different job positions.
  3. Data collection through computer analysis is easy to compile.
  4. Consistent use of this questionnaire can also assist in revising and updating a job description.
  5. Results are very reliable and valid.
  6. This is the fastest approach to job analysis and compared to any other method.

Another job analysis method that can be utilized is known as the Fleishman Job Analysis method. The Fleishman Job Analysis method also known as the F-JAS was developed by Edwin A. Fleishman. The F-JAS describes the job and tasks included based on abilities, knowledge, skills and interpersonal requirements. This method involves a thorough and scientific approach to job analysis. It includes logical and and legal consideration and is recognized as the multi-rater approach to job analysis. In total the method consists of 73 different scales which are used in measuring the capacities and abilities of a person in three categories – cognitive, psychomotor and physical. What F-JAS truly does is it provides a system through which attributes of the applicant can be matched up and compared with the requirements of the job.

For a customer service position it is vitally important that the right person is hired for the right job. In order to successfully hire the right person for the customer service position the Human Resource manager needs to deeply consider the three individual features considered by the F-JAS (cognitive, psychomotor and physical). This is why I believe this is the method that should be used in a job analysis for a customer service position. This will take the most scientific approach to the job structure and will minimize the subjective rational which may accompany a survey based job analysis approach. Once the job analysis is complete and the F-JAS has provided the information needed for the job the Human Resource Manager will use that information in the following ways to vet the right candidate for the position.

Job Design / Attracting Talent

  1. After narrowing the talent pool the Human resource manager will take the very important step of conducting a face to face interview. Accompanied with this the HRM will provide a written test as well as a situational test. This will help in analyzing the physical attributes through the face to face interview and the cognitive and psychomotor skills will be evaluated through the written and situational test. These are some of the most important functions of a customer service rep.
  2. Following the initial interview and tests it is important to know how a perspective customer service rep functions in a team environment. The HRM can arrange to have the applicants perform different group activities to see how they perform in that environment. This will help to clearly define the most suitable applicants for hiring.
  3. The actual task of designing a job is not an easy task, it requires substantial effort and careful examination of all factors of the job. Job design includes many factors but the core concept is deciding on the content of the job through a systematic approach which includes the duties and responsibilities of the job, process and methods of completing the job as well as the relationship between the job holder and their superiors, subordinates and colleagues. As explained by Rush (1971), the main reason for job design is to increase both employees motivation and productivity. This can be very difficult with many issues arising especially when designing a job for a customer service representative who typically works in a virtual environment without face to face contact with others throughout the day. An HRM manager can design this job from scratch considering the important factors in the job requirements and description. This approach to job design can be difficult and time consuming because designing a job from nothing requires that every aspect of the job be considered and addressed. On the other hand designing a job with this approach truly custom fits the job to the organizations structure.

    Another approach to job design would be to redesign the job from an existing job in the market place. I believe this is one of the most effective and efficient method to designing a customer service position. The benefits of this are that it will save time in the design process and additionally there are many existing successfully job designs for the customer service rep job. The HRM can use these existing job designs and tailor them to the company that they are working for. A few effective ways of job redesigning are to allow the job to be performed from home or including a rotational schedule to the job. Additionally as a part of the job design the HRM manager can include job enlargement and job rotation. Job enlargement is the strategy of including more responsibilities and tasks to a current job description. Job rotation includes the worker being allowed to work in other departments or areas within the company to expand their options as well as giving them a better view of the companies function and reducing boredom for the employee. Both of these features that can be included in the job design help the employee to network within the organization and increase the value of the employee to the company. These additional features to a job design go above simply improving the job satisfaction they add value to the position which will draw better talent to the position.

    Performance Evaluation

    As has been stated in this report hiring and retaining the best customer service representatives for a position is absolutely critical to a company’s success. Keeping this in mind it is equally important for the HRM to check the qualities, abilities, skills and knowledge of that customer service rep with the requirements of the job frequently to ensure that the rep and the job are aligned. Once the information has been collected from job analysis and the job description clearly defined the HRM must develop a plan for the customer service executive to constantly monitor and evaluate the customer service reps performance. There are many ways for the executive to measure the performance. Here are a few.

    These performance measurement methods are very effective and helpful in matching the information derived from the job analysis to the individual who is holding the position. This is vitally important as the customer service rep holds the very important position within the company of interacting with the customer and is responsible for the growth and success of the organization.

    1. Observation and monitoring – This method of measuring the customer service reps performance is one of the most effective and common place methods used today. Through observation an executive can judge the individual’s ability to perform a job. For example in a call center environment the customer service executive has the ability to monitor calls remotely or side by side with the customer service rep to identify skills, abilities and knowledge of the subject matter and that reps performance. If the customer service rep is knowledgeable and customer focused then they are suitable for the position and provide the company with that asset and competitive advantage. If the rep is observed performing poorly then the customer service executive knows that the rep may not be in the right job position and lacks the skills required to perform well.
    2. Customer Feedback –Another way of measuring the customer service reps performance is through feedback from the customers. If the customer is satisfied with the performance of the rep then that rep has the qualities and abilities that are required for the position. A satisfied customer indicates that the rep has the skills, knowledge and capabilities for performing the tasks of the job. On the other hand if the customer is dissatisfied with the reps performance then there may need to be action taken to improve the reps performance.
    3. Feedback from the individual – Lastly an effective way of measuring a customer service rep performance is to take feedback from the rep themselves. This information is used in determining the reps satisfaction with their current job. It is important that the customer service rep be satisfied in their role to provide quality customer service. If the rep is dissatisfied in their job position it will be difficult for that rep to full fill the needs of the customer and live up to the expectations of the company for his or her performance.
    4. References

      Derek Torrington and Laura Hall, Human Resource Management, Prentice Hall. Retrieved on

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      Cadence Michaels. How To Measure The Performance of Customer Service Representative.

      Cadence Michaels. How To Measure The Performance of Customer Service Representative

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      Rosemary Lysaght & Lynn Shaw (2013). Job Analysis (What it is and how it is used). In: JH

      Stone, M Blouin, editors. International Encyclopedia of Rehabilitation. Retrieved on Feb 11,

      2014 from

      Barry A. Ziering & Nambury S. Raju. Development And Validation Of A Job Family Specific Position Analysis Questionnaire. Journal of Business and Psychology.

      Cadence Michaels. How To Measure The Performance of Customer Service Representative.