Defining roles can be tricky, yet as I’ve explained elsewhere role clarity is important if staff are to perform at their best and not spend time treading on each others’ toes or leaving activities and functions not done.

Personally I am NOT a fan of traditional job descriptions that tend to describe the activities of the job – what you need to do.  Whilst such documents may just be appropriate for very low level jobs, I feel that for most roles where we want individuals to use their initiative they have three problems.

What matters to a business is not what is done, but the outcome achieved.

Defining activities rather than outcomes does not encourage the individual to find a better way to achieve the same outcome

Defining what to do encourages the potential for gaps of the ‘It’s not my job’ form.

I therefore prefer to define roles using Key Result Areas (KRAs) – defining outcomes and KPIs – defining measures of success.  And embed those alongside more traditioanl job details in my own form of Job description.

Here are some examples – please feel free to take them and modify to suit your own purposes.

KRA Example – Key Result Areas

KPI Example – Key Performance Indicators

JD Example – Job description