Interview tips for the New MRI Technician, p.1Isabella Grace
JOB DESCRIPTION TIPS
This is in response to requests for clarification on what is required on job descriptions and to address why so many are now being returned to the departments for editing. We are finding many job descriptions being submitted or in the library that are classified, but the way the job descriptions are written, they don't support the classification. In addition, we are receiving or finding many Admin Specialists jd's that are written to be too clerical, and are therefore being rejected and returned to the departments for editing, rewriting or reclassification. Hopefully, the following points will address these issues:
1. Admin Specialist jd's:: They are all audited now as they come in. As you know, Admin Specialist is an entry-level professional classification, not clerical, so they are not represented. If the jd is clerical, it would have to be represented, so as a result, we cannot let any clerical jd's be classified as an Admin Specialist nor can we have clerical Admin Specialist jd's in the library. (Call me if you have questions on this.) If you have submitted any Admin Specialist jd's that were returned to you for rewriting or editing, and you copied another jd in the library, please let me know the number of the one that you copied that wasn't written well or doesn't support the classification. I will have it removed from the library and/or fixed (if necessary because someone is in the job).
2. Supervisory designation: In order to review for the supervisory designation, I need the following:
a. JD numbers next to the names of each of the subordinates. (I have to review the subordinate jd's to ensure that the supervisory jd is distinctly different from those positions that it supervises.)
b. An organizational chart (attached to the jd, if possible). If you cannot attach it, send it to me and I'll attach it for you.
c. Exact supervisory language - verbatim. (Let me know if you need it sent to you again.)
d. Supervision cannot be its own function. It needs to be rolled into another function, such as "Project Management and Supervision", or "Operations and Personnel Supervision".
e. A Request for Reclassification supplement unless it is a new position. A title change is considered a reclass, so a supervisory designation of a position with an incumbent is considered a reclass, not an update. Please be sure you indicate why this person is being reclassified to a supervisory position as opposed to openly recruiting for the position. This is important if there are others "similarly situated" that might be interested or qualified for the position as well. This documentation is important should there ever be a grievance filed by someone who felt they were not allowed to apply for the supervisory position.
3. Updated jd's: If you are submitting an Updated jd, please put a comment in the Department Classifier section as to what you have updated or changed. We need to know if it is a task or a function, or supervisor, etc. Function changes (added or deleted) will result in a quick review to ensure that the change doesn't affect the classification. Comments on the minor changes just let us know what was changed and for historical purposes provide good information.
4. Position Control Number (PCN): Are you aware of the advantage of using a position control number? The PCN allows you to track what happens to a specific position. For example, if you have a jd for Sally Jones, and then Sally Jones's job is reclassified to a higher classification, or it is updated, you can put in the same PCN for each jd. Then you can do a search by the PCN and see all of the jd's that were written for Sally Jones' position. Now if Sally moves to another department or is promoted to another position, you wouldn't use the same PCN. The PCN is for that one position only and can track everything that happens to that position. It can be very handy if you want to see the history of a position and find previous jd's easily.
5. Working Titles: All jd's should have a working title that is NOT the same as the payroll title. As you will find, when you search the library for a job description, you can find what you are looking for much easier if there is a descriptive working title. You can also search by working title. If jd's only have the payroll title, then it makes it much harder to find specific jd's in the library that are relevant to what you are seeking. (Example, you could do a working title search by "contracts and grants" or "human resources" and it will bring up job descriptions with those words in the working title, thus significantly reducing the number of jd's that come up in the search.) If there is an excellent sample jd out there, but it only has the payroll title, it is harder to find. Also, you would have to open up every jd with the payroll title to see if it is relevant, whereas the working title reduces the search time.
6. Approved Title Codes: Please be sure that you put the approved title code in all updated jd's. This is the field that is used when jd's are searched in the library. If there is no approved title code listed, the jd will not come up by title search. You would only find it by searching for the specific jd #, or by searching by VC or department number, which would each return all jd's in that department or VC, and make the search much less specific and thereby more tedious.
7. HR Contact Name and Email: It would be very helpful if the HR Contact that sends in the jd would put their name and email in the comments section, so we know who to send the response to. This is especially helpful for the departments that have more than one HR Contact sending in jd's. (This will be a required feature in the next job description enhancements.)
8. Classifier Comments: We have returned quite a few jd's because the classifier comments were either non-existent, vague or not applicable to the jd. Some people have submitted jd's that have pasted in portions of the specs that have nothing to do with the jd written. Please don't just say, "Fits the specs for an SRA III." Instead you need to say why it fits the SRA III. Example: Designs experimental protocols, making innovative contributions....." (The SRA Overview states the differences in the levels and has some helpful language you could use for the comments. Let me know if you need me to send you the overview.)
9. SRA III jd's: We have been receiving quite a few SRA III jd's that are written like II's. Please review the SRA Overview to see the differences.
An SRA II jd has action verbs starting sentences like, independently performs, conducts, observes. They are doing the operational, journey level work, whereas a III is involved in senior level work, and involved in the design, development, making independent contributions, etc. An SRA III should have words in the jd that reflect the following:
Undertakes research projects in collaboration with academic supervisors, making innovative contributions pertaining to lab and/or field experimental procedures which may not change the course of an investigation but do indicate a significant independent contribution.
Intermediate level - Significant independent contribution beyond journey level.
Tasks that start with: Interprets, Analyzes, Makes determinations, Designs...
Actually, in many series, the III level represents a more senior level that no matter what the work, they are usually involved in some form of development, design, interpreting, recommending, analyzing, etc. Those duties which reflect a higher level than just "performing", “conducting” or "doing".
10. Functions: Please be sure that your jd's have more than one function. Three or more functions would be good. A jd with two functions each at 50% is diffic
11. Poorly written jd's: Remember that if you get a jd back to rewrite, it takes more time than if you send it in written well the first time. A returned jd will delay getting the position posted. We really are trying to make the library a better tool by having the jd's written correctly. So if you copy one, you won't get it back because it is written poorly or doesn't support the classification. Remember, some jd's are written better than others in the library, so you have to be careful to choose well written ones to copy. Don't feel you are being picked on if you get a jd back. Many are being returned because we now audit them before they go into the library. If the jd does not support the classification, it will be returned either for editing, rewriting or reclassification.
12. Audited JD's: Job descriptions in the following classifications are all audited before they go into the library: Admin Specialists, Assistant Admin Analysts, SRA's. Program Reps, Programmer/Analyst's, SAO I's, MSP's. All others are now reviewed for formatting and general content. These can be audited also if they do not readily appear to support the
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