University Classification Assignments
Building an improved job classification system requires that we think differently than we have in the past. The new classifications reflect different thinking about:
- Describing jobs by their responsibilities and outcomes. Education and experience are reflected in individual job responsibilities, but they alone do not define the job. Defining jobs by their key responsibilities also supports individual career planning and development.
- Different levels of responsibility and performance may exist between jobs in the same classification. These differences can be opportunities for career development, recognition and reward.
- Job classification titles are more descriptive and immediately recognizable by using words rather than numbers to distinguish one classification from another. Working titles may be appropriate in some cases to make the description even more specific to an individual job.
The 3-step review process is a sequence of steps that will build your understanding of your individual job classification assignment.
At the end of the three step review of your job classification, you should feel that the University job classification is a “best fit” for the work you do among the classification choices.
The match will not be exact; it is expected that some individual responsibilities may be better described in higher or lower classifications, but most should line up for the classification assignment to be a best fit overall.
- Read the job function purpose statement for the function assigned to you.
- A website will display the full index of functions, families and job classifications: University Job Classifications
- A link will be provided from “My Classification” on the Employee Self Service site to the website display of your job classification, which includes the job function purpose statement.
- “Index” will take you to a listing of all the job functions.
- Read the job family purpose statement for the family assigned to you.
- A link will be provided from “My Classification” on your Employee Self Service site to the website display of your job classification, which includes the job family purpose statement.
- “Previous” and “Next” buttons will take you to other job families and their classifications within the same function. The jobs within each family will be listed as a series.
- Unique classifications will be shown as a job family consisting of single classifications in the function.
- Study the job classification as defined by its key areas of responsibility.
- A link will be provided from “My Classification” on your Employee Self Service site to the website display of your job classification, which includes the key areas of responsibility as they are defined for your classification.
- The other job classifications in your job family will be listed on the job webpage as a series. Clicking on the “plus sign” beside each job classification name will expand to show the key areas of responsibility, so as to see how jobs are distinguished within a family.
- Responsibilities within a job family are cumulative, meaning that they build upon the responsibilities of the first a series of jobs.
The new University compensation and classification structure provides University classification titles that are descriptive of the work performed. However, when a more specific title would serve the unit’s operational interests, a working title may be used to describe the function of the position in even greater detail or more easily recognized terms in both internal and external communications.
A “working title” should more clearly or precisely describe the function, responsibilities or scope of an individual job assignment, and thereby provide a more immediate understanding of the job in business communications. Employing units may use working titles to differentiate between similar roles in a workgroup, or to distinguish between similar specialties within a classification. The working title should use those terms that are most easily recognized and understood by internal and external constituencies. Working titles may be used in lieu of the University classification title for:
- Searches and job postings
- Local job descriptions and employee personnel records
- Regular business correspondence, both internal and external to the University, and
- The public University directories, both printed and online (effective with the transition to the new job classification structure in July 2011).
The University job classification title will be the default if no working title is established.
In determining the need for a working title, the supervisor and staff member should consider the following:
- Does the University job classification title adequately describe the function of the job assignment for professional business communications inside and/or outside the University?
- If yes, there is no need to request a working title.
- If no, continue to question 2.
- Are there other terms that would more specifically and accurately describe the function of the job assignment, and provide more immediate recognition?
- If yes, go to question 3.
- Would a working title provide a more accurate and recognizable understanding of the relationship between jobs and/or functions within a work unit or organization?
- If yes, review the University Guidelines for the Optional use of Working Titles and any additional guidelines your College/Division/Organization may establish for the use of working titles.
Staff members and supervisors should discuss their interest in a working title with their departmental leadership and Unit Human Resources Representative. When an appropriate working title has been identified, the Unit Human Resources Representative will initiate the formal request in Self Service.
Working titles must be approved by the Senior Human Resources Leader for the college/division prior to use. The Senior Human Resources Leader’s review and approval will be based upon compliance with the University expectations below, and any additional organizational guidelines that may be established within a specific college or division. The Senior Human Resources Leader may include consideration of the consistency of titles within units or professions, and/or other relevant factors when approving requests for working titles. The Senior Human Resources Leader may also change or withdraw approval of a working title with notice to the individual(s) impacted.
A working title should:
- Provide a more specific description of the function or work performed to better facilitate business communications.
- Add clarity to the University’s job function, family and classification assignment in describing the individual job.
- Be consistent with professional/industry practice.
- Be consistent with other working titles within a job family and/or work unit.
A working title cannot:
- Duplicate a title used in another employee group, e.g. Merit system or SEIU professionals.
- Be exactly the same as another professional and scientific classification. Some modification in the title must be made to provide a more specific description of the responsibilities of the job.
- Misrepresent the University or the authority of the position in any way. The use of “inflated” titles can create inaccurate expectations of the individual role.
- Use any title that includes the words Vice President or Provost; the title of Dean; or other titled positions that are recognized as institutional officers, e.g. University Secretary or University Treasurer. These titles require specific permission and approval by University Human Resources and the Board of Regents, State of Iowa.
Examples of acceptable working titles are listed below:
University Classification Title: Potential Working Titles
Accountant: Payroll Accountant; Benefits Accountant
Senior HR Specialist: Compensation Manager; Senior Benefits Manager
Senior Director, HR Services: Director, Compensation and Classification
Senior Systems Administrator: Senior UNIX Systems Administrator; Director, Windows Administration
Page Last Updated January 2012