Job Descriptions - Should employees sign their job descriptions? Why or why not?

K

kvrad

#1
I have always worked in companies where employees sign their job descriptions as an acknowledgement of responsibilites and acknowledgement of competency requirements. I'm running into a bit of push back this time. Do you have all employees sign their job descriptions? Why or why not?
 
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Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#2
Re: Job Descriptions

Not. It's a two-way street - employer then limits what he can ask employee to do (often entails renegotiating pay, hours, etc.) plays real havoc with unionized labor force.

Employer is ultimately responsible for determining competency, regardless of what employee claims - then what value does employee signature provide?
 
D

domingue

#3
Re: Job Descriptions

I didn't have to sign a job description when I started my current job - just my offer letter.

I didn't have to sign one at my previous employer either, but I am certain that is more a result of their lack of organization than a calculated decision.
 

howste

Thaumaturge
Super Moderator
#4
In my opinion, there's no value in having the signature. Here are the requirements I presume you're talking about:
ISO 13485 said:
5.5.1 Responsibility and authority
Top management shall ensure that responsibilities and authorities are defined, documented and communicated within the organization.
This requires that R&A be communicated. A signature is not evidence of communication. In an audit, I find evidence that communication has taken place by talking to people and seeing what their understanding is.

Here at the forums, before anyone is allowed to post they agree to abide by the Elsmar Cove Forums TOS. Everyone clicked the box saying they agreed (the equivalent of a signature), but how many people actually read them and how well do they really know them? :notme:
ISO 13485 said:
6.2.2 Competence, awareness and training
The organization shall
a) determine the necessary competence for personnel performing work affecting product quality,
b) provide training or take other actions to satisfy these needs,
This requires the organization to define the competence needed and to take actions to ensure employees are competent. If an employee doesn't have the required competence, it's the organization's responsibility to recognize it and make it happen.
 

Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#5
Moderator note:
I have moved this thread to the Occupation Discussions Forum. In my opinion, there is NO STANDARD which has such a requirement as a "Shall." The discussion is more directed to what makes "good" business sense from either or both employer or employee viewpoints.
 

howste

Thaumaturge
Super Moderator
#6
I referenced ISO 13485 because that is the forum it was posted in. In some cases there may be medical device regulatory requirements that may apply in addition to the standard. I'm not aware of any related to this, but I don't know them all...
 

Jen Kirley

Quality and Auditing Expert
Staff member
Admin
#7
I would ask why they hesitate. Do this in whatever way you need to for an honest answer. This includes over pizza offsite at lunch time.

It's okay to sign when one feels comfortable to perform a task after training. But this could make employees feel as though they will be held responsible for things not in their control. After all, what acknowledgment of responsibilities has management signed? And is there evidence that there is a lack of devotion to employees success? Safety problems? One thing I have learned is that line workers are not fools. They know the score and it's worth asking them what it is.
:2cents:
 

BradM

Staff member
Admin
#8
I say signing is not necessary.

I realize states and countries are a bit different, but for the most part, a company post a job, people apply, and the company offers the job to the most qualified candidate. The candidate takes the job (or turns it down), and works there until they quit, or the organization let's them go.

What value is in there for anybody to sign the job description? What is it "proving"? To me (this is just an opinion) when you have people sign things, it's like you're making some legally binding document.

The candidate should be adequately interviewed/ verified by the hiring agency prior to offering them the job. Is the person qualified (or most qualified) for the position?

Then the candidate should investigate the organization, hiring supervisor and such, to assure that the job is what they want.

I'm sure I signed my marriage license. But my marriage (and a successful one up to this point:tg:) focuses on things significantly more important than the words on that paper.:agree1:
 

howste

Thaumaturge
Super Moderator
#10
Coming from a Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices field, I vote YES for signing as it provides a documented proof :)
The question is: documented proof of what?

Medical device regulations require signatures for various things. The signatures are there to provide proof of authorization or approval. For example, the US QSR's require:
Signatures of the individual(s) approving documents and changes to documents (proof of approval).
Signatures of the individual(s) approving design input requirements (proof of approval).
Signatures of the individual(s) approving design outputs (proof of approval).
Signatures of the individual(s) approving validation of processes (proof of approval).
Signatures of the individual(s) conducting acceptance activities (proof of acceptance).
Signatures of the individual(s) perfoming labeling examination or accuracy (proof of review and approval).
Signatures of the individual(s) authorizing release of finished goods (proof of authorized release).
Signatures of the individual(s) authorizing use of nonconforming product (proof of authorized use).

All of these required signatures are for authorization or approval. Does it make sense for each employee to authorize or approve their own job descriptions? I personally don't think so.
 
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