Think of a job description as a ‘map’ that outlines an employee’s journey within an organization. It’s like a blueprint, showing the employee’s position within the larger company structure. To bring this to life, consider the job description of a Marketing Manager.
A Marketing Manager’s job description might state that they’re responsible for developing and implementing marketing strategies, overseeing the marketing team, analyzing market trends, and driving brand awareness. This gives them a clear idea of what they’re expected to do and how they contribute to the bigger picture.
Employers often use job descriptions as a reference point. For instance, if a Marketing Manager was consistently failing to meet their targets or lead their team effectively, their job description might be used to assess their performance and potentially take disciplinary action.
For team leads and supervisors, job descriptions are a practical tool to navigate organizational and coordination challenges. For example, understanding the job descriptions of the team members reporting to a Marketing Manager can help in delegating tasks effectively.
For the employee – in this case, the Marketing Manager – the job description helps clarify their role. They understand the skills required (like strategic planning, team management, etc.), their duties, the authority they have, their rights, responsibilities, and how they connect within the overall company ecosystem. A 2019 study by the University of Mauritius even found that job satisfaction is greatly influenced by the clarity and comprehensiveness of a job description.
So, in essence, a job description is like an ‘organizational map.’ In the case of our Marketing Manager, it:
- Clarifies the nature of their work and their area of specialization;
- Sets out the skills required for their role;
- Prevents overlaps in the execution of tasks (like the distinction between the Marketing and Sales department);
- Demonstrates how the Marketing Manager’s role connects with others;
- Delineates their obligations and rights;
- Highlights their level of accountability;
- Helps in the evaluation of their performance;
- Boosts the transparency of the workflow within the marketing department.