Job Design & Evaluation

The Aiken Plan for Job Evaluation

  1. Complexity - Judgement (Decision Making)

    This factor deals with the complexity of the tasks performed, judgement/decision-making necessary and problem-solving required by the position.

    Complexity refers to the variety and degree of difficulty of the work performed.

    Judgement/Decision Making refers to the application of knowledge in making decisions.

    This factor considers the variety and intricacy of activities performed and the procedures and methods utilized. Also considered is the level of analytical thought required to make decisions, what needs to be done, and how it is to be done.

    Ranking levels increase with:

    (a) the variety and diversity of activities;

    (b) the difficulty of the tasks and/or situations encountered and decision-making required.

  2. Knowledge

    Knowledge is a combination of the required minimum education and the time it takes to become functional in a role.

    Education refers to the minimum formalized training necessary to prepare an individual to be functional in a position.

    The time it takes to become functional in a role is measured in months and quantifies the time required to learn the essential techniques, skills, and/or procedures of a position and the work unit/organization.

  3. Independence of Action

    Independence of Action refers to the initiative required and also:

    • considers creativity and original thought required by the job; and,
    • is impacted by the amount of direction and control received from the supervisor or standard practices and precedents.
  4. Consequence of Errors

    This factor assesses the likelihood, and the probable effect, of errors on the job and considers:

    • the extent of losses to the organization which result from mistakes in judgement or poor decisions;
    • a typical instance, not a rare or extreme one; however, the possibility of serious consequences is given consideration;
    • and, responsibility for the safety of others.

    This factor measures the scope within which the position functions and the impact of decisions. That is, who or what is affected (the Unit, Section, Department, Faculty, or the University) and how easy it is to detect and/or correct.

  5. Contacts

    This factor assesses who the contacts are, the purpose of the contacts, and the importance and impact to the organization.

    Contacts refer to the importance of the working relationships and interactions required of the position. The contacts can be internal and/or external to the organization (face-to-face, on the phone, public appearances, etc.).

    Interactions may cover a variety of purposes and range in complexity (demonstration, coaching, advising, information exchange, etc.).

  6. Supervision – Character

    The Character of Supervision considers the degree and nature of a position's supervisory responsibilities. The extent of responsibility for results is considered in terms of operations, policy, personnel, and finances.

    If no supervisory activities are required, no points are awarded.

  7. Supervision – Scope

    This factor ranks the number of employees supervised.

    All positions are pro-rated to Full Time Equivalents (FTEs). Casual employees may be included depending on duration and number of hours worked.

  8. Physical Demands

    This factor considers the degree, frequency, severity, intensity, and continuity of physical activity and intense visual concentration required.

    Fatigue and weariness caused by long periods of repetitive tasks are considered (data entry, painting, etc.).

  9. Working Conditions

    Working Conditions assesses the disagreeable aspects of the job environment in relation to employee safety and comfort.

    The Collective Agreement between the Board of Governors (BOG) and the Non-Academic Staff Association (NASA) provides for compensation for those employees who work unusual hours including Shift Work or Modified Work Week; and Overtime. These items are therefore not considered in the job evaluation process.

    Travel to and from the work site is not considered. Travel is rated when it is an integral part of the duties, and the travel is of sufficient duration and distance to be significant.

    The severity and frequency of exposure to workplace hazards is considered. In evaluating health hazards we must assume that all reasonable and legal Occupational Health and Safety practices are in place and are adhered to. (See Evaluator Notes on Personal Protective Equipment at the end of Working Conditions).