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Approaches to Classifying Employees in Government
There are two basic approaches to developing a job evaluation classification system. These
two basic approaches are the market data approach and the job content approach.
Neither of these approaches are stand alone approaches, and in fact, each requires
information from the other approach. The distinguishing characteristic between
these two job evaluation approaches is the relative emphasis which is placed on either the
market data or the job content data.
The market data approach is characterized by brief job descriptions, use of
market data on over 50% of the job titles to determine the pay grades of jobs
and an informal slotting approach to determine the salary grade for job titles
where there is a lack of sufficient market data. In the last ten years, this
approach has become increasingly popular among companies in the private sector,
because of its flexibility and simplicity. We are not aware any, government
sector organizations which use this approach. We believe the reasons are that
the government sector needs solid, detailed job descriptive information in order
to develop selection criteria, as well as to document classification decisions.
Basically, the job content approach is characterized by detailed job descriptions,
extensive job evaluation data and an analysis of the value or worth of the content
of the job. Market data is used to determine the general level of the market
for occupations, but the relative emphasis is on the internal relationships
that are developed from the job evaluations.
The job content approach relies on the evaluation of the worth or value of
the job title based on a determination of the different levels of the skill,
effort, responsibility and working conditions required of the job. These four
criteria form the basis of most job content evaluation systems because they
are embodied in the Equal Pay Act of 1963. Moreover, they have been determined
to be a sound basis for distinguishing the different levels of work that exist.
In other words, these four criteria form the basis for most existing job
evaluation systems that are used to determine the value of jobs.
Within the job content approach, there are six basic types of job content evaluation
methods. These can be categorized into two different types: non-quantitative
methods and quantitative methods..
There are three basic non-quantitative methods to evaluate the job content
of jobs. There are called non-quantitative methods because the methods do not
result in a quantitative number that can be manipulated by normal mathematical
operations of adding, subtracting, multiplication or division. These are:
- whole job ranking
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