Writing a Position Description
A Position Description describes the knowledge, skills, abilities, and duties of a specific position, not the characteristics or traits of the current incumbent. It must include a breakdown of essential job functions with the estimated percentage of time devoted to each responsibility. Before writing a position description, consider the following:
• Keep the sentence structure simple. Omit unnecessary words that are not relevant. Focus on the responsibilities associated with the position.
• Be precise. That is to say, think about how this document will serve as a model for position evaluation and analysis.
• Focus on critical activities, disregard occasional tasks that are not unique to the specific position.
• Refer to job titles rather than actual incumbents, e.g., “Reports to the _____ manager” as opposed to a specific individual.
• Refer to the importance of diversity on our campus.
The HSU Position Description Consists of Six Sections:
Section A: Position summary: A short statement that discusses the purpose or objective of the position.
Section B: Essential job functions: A percentage breakdown of duties and responsibilities. Example: 25% Provides technical support to end-users.
a. Installs desktop applications and software.
b. Trains end-users on new software and technology.
Section C: Minimum qualifications required to perform all essential functions: Refer to the Classification Standards or call Human Resources at 826-3626.
Section D: Knowledge, special skills and abilities required: Refer to the Classification Standards or call Human Resources at 826-3626.
Section E: Equipment used in the performance of the assignment: Example: Standard office equipment, PC/Mac computer, Forklift, etc.
Section F: Specific physical and/or environmental working conditions that relate to the essential job functions of the position: Example: The ability to sit for prolonged periods of time, or the ability to move equipment weighing up to 40 pounds.