Accurate and comprehensive role profiles are core requirements for almost any successful talent management, human capital, or recruitment initiative. A well-constructed role profile can be used to support recruitment and selection, development, job grading, performance management, career pathing and succession planning.
How are role profiles created?
A proper method of profiling a role would always include a structured conversation or interview with incumbents, managers, and HR professionals. The purpose here is to fully understand the role, not only in its functional sense but also in how it fits into the greater organisational culture and strategy.
Once the role profiling specialist has captured all of this valuable data, a draft profile is sent to all interviewees for comment and modification. Only once there is consensus on the final version is the role profile added to the company’s role database and put to use.
What do role profiles contain?
If all goes according to plan, a comprehensive profile should contain these elements:
The job purpose
Key outputs / Key performance areas / Key responsibilities
Technical skills and knowledge requirements
Complexity level of the role
Key performance indicators or success measures (linked to each broad output)
Inputs / Activities
From the above list, you can see that a well-conceived role profile can serve multiple end-users, from line managers to HR professionals and also the incumbent themselves. Of course, the converse is also true: poorly conceived role profiles make performance management and talent management even more difficult than they already are.
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