Modern Technique of Job Design02/06/2020
Job design logically follows job analysis. Job analysis provides job related data as well as the skill and knowledge expected of the incumbent to discharge the job. Job design involves organizing tasks, duties and responsibilities into a unit of work to achieve certain objectives.
Job design is the process of deciding on the contents of a job in terms of its duties and responsibilities, on the methods to be used in carrying out the job in terms of techniques, systems and procedures, and on the relationships that should exist between the job holders and his supervisors, subordinates and colleagues.
The main objectives of job design are to integrate the needs of the individuals and the requirements of the organization. Needs of the employees include job satisfaction in terms of interest, challenge and achievement? Organizational requirements are high productivity, technical efficiency and quality of work.
It is one of the methods of job design which is an answer to the problem of boredom. Job rotation implies the shifting of an employee from one job to another without any change in the job. With job rotation, a given employee performs different jobs but, more or less, jobs of the same nature.
Advantages of job rotation are as follows:
- Decreases monotony and boredom
- Reduces disinterest of employees and stimulates the development of new ideas
- Broadens the work experience of job holders
- Transforms the specialists into generalists
- Prepares employees for assuming greater responsibilities.
Here the jobs are simplified or specialised. A given job is broken down into small sub-parts and each part is assigned to one individual.
Job simplification involves –
- Mechanical processing of work
- Repetitive work process (assembly lines)
- Working on only one part of a product
- Predetermining tools and techniques
- Few skill requirements.
Work simplification is done so that less-trained and the less paid employees can do these jobs.
This method has limitations. Over simplification results in boredom which lead in turn to errors.
It is the process of increasing the scope of a job by adding more tasks to it. The related tasks are combined. Job enlargement involves expanding the number of tasks or duties assigned to a given job. Job enlargement therefore, naturally is opposite to work simplification. Adding more tasks/ duties to a job does not mean that new skill and abilities are needed to perform it. There is only a horizontal expansion.
Job enlargement reduces monotony and boredom. It helps to increase interest in work and efficiency. But there is no time increase of the job. Enlarged jobs require longer training period as there are more task to be learned.
The key benefits provided by job enlargement are as follows:
- Increases the number of tasks to include variety and reduce the monotony and boredom in the existing job
- Increases employees’ job satisfaction by providing them an opportunity to develop and learn new skills
- Utilizes mental and physical skills and abilities of employees optimally and makes them satisfied
- Enables the employees to vary the rhythm and sequence of work at their own pace to make the job enjoyable for them.
There are certain shortcomings of the job enlargement approach, which are as follows:
- Increases the training cost
- Leads to decrease in productivity as employees take time to gel with the new system
- Gives rise to conflict with trade unions as they demand increase in pay with increase in workload
- Finds it difficult to remove the monotony and boredom from many jobs as one set of boring tasks is added to the existing set of boring tasks.
It involves designing a job in such a way that it provides the workers greater autonomy for planning and controlling his own performance. It seeks to improve tasks, efficiency and human satisfaction by building into people’s jobs, greater scope for personal achievement and recognition, more challenging and responsible work and more opportunity for individual advancement.
The features of an enriched job are described as follows:
- Personal Accountability: Makes job incumbents responsible for their output and performance. The job incumbents are rewarded according to their work.
- Increased and Direct Feedback: Ensure timely and fair evaluation of performance of employees.
- New and Unique Learning: Helps the job incumbent to grow intellectually and acquire unique qualities or features.
- Power to plan own work: Involves freedom to schedule own work and decide when to undertake which task.
- Control over resources: Provides job incumbent the authority of ordering and managing supplies and other resources necessary for performing their jobs.
- Encouraged participation: Ensures that the job incumbent feels committed and get a sense of belongingness through his/her enriched job.
- Client Relationship: Refers to direct or indirect interaction with clients. An enriched job may provide an opportunity to the employees to develop strong client base by maintaining good relationship with them.
- Authority of direct communication: Allows the job incumbent to converse directly with the persons who require his/her output.
The advantages of job enrichment are as follows:
- Makes the work interesting for employees
- Provides greater sense of responsibility, self-control, and self-esteem by allowing more autonomy in the tasks
- Motivates the employees by providing them the opportunities to develop and progress
- Facilitates the higher job satisfaction to employees
- Develops the new skills of the employees
- Makes the task reinforcement easy
- Reduces the absenteeism rate and attrition rate.
Further an enriched job shall meet certain psychological needs of job holders (Identity achievement) etc. Job enrichment is motivating and satisfying as it adds status to one’s job. Empowerment, a by-product of job enrichment, gives the employees a sense of ownership and control over their job.
The limitations are, if the employee is lazy or does not give due attention to his/her job, job enrichment will not have the desired outcomes. The cost of design and implementation increases. Further job enrichment by itself does not motivate. This must be preceded by the provision of other variables which contribute to the quality of work life.