Job design refers to the way that a set of tasks, or an entire position, is organized. Job design helps to determine:

  • what tasks are done
  • when and how the tasks are done
  • how many tasks are done
  • in what order the tasks are done
  • factors which affect the work
  • organization of the content and tasks

Good design incorporates the relationship with organizational goals and values and should be well understood in order to align and prioritize the job’s responsibilities. The design should:

  • Allow for employee input. Employees should have the option to vary activities according to personal needs, work habits, and the circumstances in the workplace.
  • Give employees a sense of accomplishment.
  • Include training requirements so employees know what tasks to do and how to do them properly.
  • Provide good work/rest schedules.
  • Provide feedback to the employees about their expected performance.


The first step is to assess current work practices. Consider:

Discuss the process with supervisors involved and be clear about the process and any process changes or training that will be involved.

Conduct a task analysis by examining the job and determining exactly what the tasks are, identifying potential problem areas.


The second step is to design the job.

Identify the methods for doing the work, work schedules, interactions, training requirements, and equipment needed. For Administrative and Managerial, Professional, Supervisory or Supervisory positions, the Classification and Recruitment Form may help you in organizing this information. Coordinate the different tasks and be careful not to either under or overload the job. Consider:


Recruitment and employment is expensive and resource intensive. Consider sharing the work by the current staff. This saves money and time, and might present an opportunity for staff development. It may be more cost-effective to have the work performed on a short-term temporary or consultant basis.


Discuss the new position with staff directly or indirectly affected by the job, asking for their views and explaining the purpose of the job and how it will impact on them. University Human Resources HR Consultants are available as a resource to discuss your current organizational situation and your future staff needs.

Availability of skills and experience:

A job requiring community development experience and a technical qualification may demand an unusual combination of skills in one person. It may be better to employ two people – a full-time community development expert, and a consulting engineer to assist as necessary.

Organizational issues:

The current organizational structure must provide adequate support for the position and enable it to be effective. This includes sufficient authority, resources and management support to be able to achieve its purpose. Ensure there will be no job overlap or conflict with others. Be clear about the specific role of the new job and how it fits into the organization.


Allow for adequate time to do the job. The incumbent must be able to reasonably manage the workload during normal working hours, taking into account the impact of any special requirements. Job satisfaction and motivation are important factors influencing how long employees stay in the job. Give staff as much control and authority as possible over how they carry out the job; ensure there is sufficient variety in the job to maintain their interest; and providing development and learning opportunities.


The final step is to re-evaluate the job design on a regular basis, making necessary measures an adjustments.

A well designed job, which mutually benefits the employee and you, lays the foundation for a successful recruitment and retention program. A carefully crafted job also frames work expectations and creates an environment that encourages both the employee and Rutgers to succeed.