How To Create Baseline Job Descriptions

December 8, 2015

by Kristen Luke

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Managing human capital is complex. If you run a smaller firm, wearing multiple hats is the norm. One person might act as your senior advisor, associate advisor, operations manager and client service specialist. This makes it especially difficult to create job descriptions and run your firm as efficiently and effectively as possible.

Baseline job descriptions will simplify how you manage your employees. By writing baseline job descriptions, you’ll have a clear description of each position in your firm, and you’ll be able to break down exactly how much time each multitasking employee is spending on each duty.

You’ll also build better teams.

Here’s how baseline job descriptions work. Suppose one employee spends 20% of their time working as a client service specialist, 40% of their time as a lead advisor and the last 40% meeting new clients and working as a senior advisor/partner. When you have firm descriptions of each individual position, you’ll be able to build Diamond Teams™ (if applicable) and see what you can or should change to optimize each employee’s performance.

Step 1: List all of the positions in your firm

Make a list of all your employees and their titles. As mentioned, there may be an overlap in duties, but most likely your employees have a specific title like “receptionist,” not a long, dissected title such as “receptionist/client service specialist/operations manager.”

Step 2: Write an overall description of each position

Choose a position, and in one paragraph, describe that job. For example, for a director of financial planning, your paragraph might be as follows:

Directors of Financial Planning are used in large advisory firms that do very detailed, complex and comprehensive financial planning for clients. The position requires a detailed and highly experienced Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®) practitioner who has had over 10 years of financial planning experience. Directors of Financial Planning work with and assist Senior and Lead Advisors in the creation of recommendations and presentations of complex financial plans to clients. They have extensive knowledge in estate, retirement, tax, education and insurance planning.

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How To Create Baseline Job Descriptions