Definition: Job specification can be described as the written statement which lists out the minimum qualification, traits and characteristics (both physical and mental) which the incumbent must possess for getting the job done satisfactorily.
It translates the job description into important human qualifications, traits and background required for the performance of the job responsibly and successfully.
It encompasses educational qualification, professional qualification, experience, age, skills, knowledge, abilities, competencies, attitude and nature of previous experience and so forth. Simply put, it identifies the least acceptable eligibility requirements possessed by the applicant, to get selected for the particular job/position.
At the time of recruitment, if job specification is clearly defined, it can help in inviting applications from eligible candidates only and in this way, applications from a large number of candidates can be avoided, which reduces time, cost and manpower involved in processing the curriculum vitae or resume.
Elements of Job Specification
First of all, a list of all the vacancies in the organisation is prepared, after that facts and details of each job position are gathered, so as to create a write-up. Next, job specification details are translated into employee specification, to analyse the suitability of the candidate according to the job.
In other words, job specification is helpful in hiring the right candidate for the job.
The elements of job specifications are the factors on which the appointment of the incumbent is based, as it specifies the qualities on which the candidate is to be assessed. So, here is a list of such characteristics:
- Physical Characteristics: It implies a person’s physical traits and capacities such as the build, height, weight, complexion, body size, etc. that differs from job to job. It also includes a person’s ability to carry weight or operate machinery, etc.
- Educational Characteristics: It covers the minimum educational qualification needed for carrying out the job duties and discharging responsibilities. Along with that, it lists out additional educational qualification possessed by the occupant, such as knowledge of computers or any other software.
- Demographic Characteristics: Demographic features includes a person’s age, gender, language, skills, competencies, training, experience, abilities, etc.
- Personal Characteristics: It covers specifications like attitude, behaviour, aggressiveness, manners, ethics, emotional stability, initiative, drive, communication skills, body language, physical appearance, responsibilities, and etiquettes of the job holder which are the most important characteristic for the post of managers and executives.
- Psychological Characteristics: It involves mental specifications, such as aptitude, reasoning, alertness, manual dexterity, sharpness, sociability, judgement, etc. that determines the job holder’s ability to perform the arithmetical calculation, interpret data, scientific and reading ability and analysis.
Human Resource Department of the company is responsible for the preparation of the Job specification, on the suggestion and recommendation of the supervisor and manager.
It serves as a standard to evaluate, the extent to which the incumbent matches the job opening and also to measure the performance at the time of performance appraisal.