Position Description Preparation

 

As a professional you may be a manager, or making the transition to management, and encounter tasks that you have not been specifically trained for. For instance, you may need to prepare a position description for either yourself or a member of staff.

APESMA’s Guide to Position Description Preparation gives you the tools you need to prepare an effective and accurate position description.

Section 1 – Objectives

What are the objectives of your position?

Section 2 – Duties and Responsibilities

List your duties and responsibilities paying some attention to the order of importance of those duties and responsibilities. For example, a low order of importance should be given to any duties or responsibilities which do not require professional engineering qualifications such as “routine handling of correspondence”.

Give a percentage time break-up if possible.

Section 3 – Position

  • List your position in the organisation
  • To whom are you directly responsible?
  • Who else gives you directions or instructions?

Section 4 – Departments/Sections

Name the Departments or Sections under your control.

Section 5 – Types and Employees

List of types and numbers of employees under your control:

  • Professional
  • Supervisory
  • Non-supervisory
  • Total
  1. Incurring costs – describe authority (if any) to incur costs’ distinguish between recommendation to incur costs and authority to approve.
  2. Budget responsibilities – describe responsibility for budget allocation.
  3. Responsibility for Property and Equipment.

The following table could be of assistance in answering this item:

What is the nature of your accountability for these items to ensure security, maintenance, proper use, or return on investment? (Tick the appropriate column below).

What is your authority to purchase these capital items? (Tick the appropriate column in Authority to Purchase section).

Also indicate the financial limit to purchase any one item where you have authority to approve purchases.




  • In the performance of your duties do you simply follow established procedures or ensure that prescribed procedures are followed?
  • Do you have authority to change procedures or recommend changes?
  • Do you approve changes to procedures?
  • Are you responsible for controlling and executing the major systems of the organisation through functional managers?

c. Responsibility for personnel




Which of the following statements best describes the decisions you are required to make? If uncertain tick the two most appropriate boxes.




Are your decisions checked? ……

Do your decisions commit the organisation to a course of action? ……

Which of the following statements best describe the requirements of your position. If uncertain tick the two most appropriate boxes.


Which of the following statements best describes your work? If uncertain tick the two most appropriate boxes.




Which of the following statements best describes the degree to which you must refer to a higher authority? In uncertain tick the two most appropriate boxes.


Which of the following statements best describes how closely you are supervised? Refer footnote for clarification of terms used. If uncertain tick the two most appropriate.



Footnote: “Supervision” implies supervision of action, usually of non-supervisory personnel. “Direction” involves decisions as to the course of action. The prefix “general” indicates that supervision or directions is less immediate.

Which of the following statements best describes the types of errors which could be made in your position? If uncertain tick the two most appropriate boxes.




Which of the following statements best explains the degree to which your work and decisions are checked. If uncertain tick the two most appropriate.