The Importance of Job Analysis in Performance Management

Job Analysis holds information relating to the different aspects of the jobs and it provides information regarding what activities to perform in a particular job, gives an indication how to perform them, the skills and responsibilities to assume in order to perform them well and its impact in achieving the individual and organizational performance expectations (Hong and Lin 1995; McCourt and Eldridge 2003). Siddique (2004: 220) defines job analysis as

“It provides a rich source of information about jobs and jobholders that HR professionals use to develop such important documents as job description, job specification and performance standards.”

The information is collected from a variety of sources using different techniques, for example, observation, personal and telephone interview, questionnaire and others (Campbell 1989). According to McEntire et al. (2006), the information gathered through job analysis can be used for a variety of purposes. Sims and Foxley (1980) illustrate that the purpose of conducting a job analysis is for the diverse use of the obtained information, for example, developing job descriptions, evaluating employees’ job performance, developing training programs, setting up pay and so on. Berenson and Ruhnke (1974 cited in Sims and Foxley 1980) state that job analysis helps organizations evaluate the performance of the employees in terms of the way they are acting, behaving and carrying out their activities and how they are actually supposed to. It is pointed out that in order to understand the performance behavior of employees, emphasis needs to be given on the behavioral aspects of the employees (Rayner and Adam-Smith, eds. 2005).

According to Clifford (1994), employees’ behavior is an important dimension of job analysis, where behavior associated with job should be taken into account on the first instance to understand the strength and weaknesses of the employees and in order for the effective of the management of performance issues by the organization and the employee. Waite and Stites-Doe (2000: 190) point out that

“Behavior are measured relative to objective performance expectations set jointly between employee and supervisor at the start of the TPM (Total Performance Management) cycle.”

de Wall (2003) provides a picture of the importance of human behavior for achieving the expected performance, which is crucial for the successful implementation of performance management.

Clifford (1994) suggests that a quality job analysis should focus on the improvement of the communication throughout the organization, which is necessary for communicating the contents of the job with subordinate managers and employees. According to Siddique (2004), job analysis is an important source of information for understanding the expectations of the organizations, which gives employees a clear direction of their duties and responsibilities, thereby provides a basis for increased productivity, motivation and satisfaction. For effective performance management, communication plays an important role because it is the weapon used in determining the needs to improve employees’ competencies, drives and motivation, which in turn help in achieving the organizational goals (Bacal 2004).


• Bacal, R. (2004), How to Manage Performance: 24 Lessons for Improving Performance, McGraw-Hill Professional, New York.
• Campbell, C. P. (1989), “Job Analysis for Industrial Training”, Journal of European Industrial Training, Vol. 13, No. 2, pp. 2-58.
• Clifford, J. (1994), “Job Analysis: Why Do It and How Should It Be Done?”, Public Personnel Management, Vol. 23, pp. 321–40.
• McCourt, W. and Eldridge, D. (2003), Global Human Resource Management, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham.
• de Wall, A. A. (2003), “Behavioral Factors Important for the Successful Implementation and Use of Performance Management Systems”, Management Decision, Vil. 41, No. 8, pp. 688-697.
• Hong, J. C. and Lin, Y. S. (1995), “A Model of Job Analysis on Industrial Occupations”, Work Study, Vol. 44, No. 1, pp. 11-13.
• McEntire, L. E.; Dailey, L. R.; Osburn, H. K.; and Mumford, M. D. (2006), “Innovations in Job Analysis: Development and Application of Metrics to Analyze Job Data”, Human Resource Management Review, Vol. 16, No. 3, pp. 310-323.
• Siddique, C. M. (2004), “Job Analysis: A Strategic Human Resource Management Practice”, International Journal of Human Resource Management, Vol. 15, No. 1, pp. 219–244.
• Sims, J. M. and Foxley, H. C. (1980), “Job Analysis, Job Descriptions, and Performance Appraisal Systems”, New Directions for Student Services, Vol.1, No. 9, pp. 41-53.
• Waite, M.L. and Stites-Doe, S. (2000), “Removing Performance Appraisal and Merit Pay in the Name of Quality: An Empirical Study of Employees’ reactions”, Journal of Quality Management, Vol. 5, No.2, pp.187-206.

Posted by: Farid Ahmed

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