With some job descriptions needing more than 20 years’ worth of updating, a pilot project is getting under way within six DHHS human service divisions to fix them.
The effort will result in descriptions being current, reflecting what each employee actually does. It also will be adding a talent inventory that will help assure available skills are not overlooked when they may be needed.
“A lot has happened within all of our divisions over the past 20 or more years, and we need to be sure that all of the employee job descriptions accurately reflect who is doing what,” said DHHS Deputy Secretary for Human Services Sherry Bradsher.
The Human Services divisions – Aging and Adult Services, Social Services, Vocational Rehabilitation Services, Services for the Blind, Services for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, and Child Development and Early Education – will be updated. Bradsher noted that while the effort will require a lot of work, there will be a lot of benefits.
There are about 2,400 job descriptions to be updated. Sixteen managers from the divisions have been trained in preparation for the project, and they, in turn, will train more managers across the divisions to help launch the effort.
“There comes a time when planning to make things better for the future cannot be put off any longer,” she said, “and that is why I made the decision to move forward with a number of very important steps:
- developing talent inventories;
- using some new tools to not just update current job descriptions, but to eventually facilitate designing that job to fill tomorrow’s needs;
- identifying the broad skill sets of our staff so that they fully utilize their talents to meet their career goals at the same time they help our customers meet theirs.”
The update is a result of the 2012 employee engagement survey, and it is in response to requests from the work force. A process has been initiated by DHHS Workforce Exchange with Bradsher’s support, to accomplish this goal. An initial phase is targeted for completion by November.
“I know you are already busy and that there are deadlines, goals, objectives and expectations that you are dealing with and that some of these have critical timelines,” Bradsher said. “Like you, sometimes I wish there were more hours in every day. But this paves the way for you to better advertise job vacancies, conduct more successful interviews and onboard future staff. Such actions will position us to become the nimble, responsible and high-performing organization that we have envisioned during the past few years as part of DHHS Excels.”