Reconceptualize Job Descriptions

Simplify both the template and the process to transform job descriptions into living documents that drive stakeholder value.


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Your Challenge

  • The high level of detail in job descriptions and lengthy approval processes are incongruent with today’s dynamic environment.
  • The evolving nature of work challenges traditional approaches to job descriptions.
  • Out-of-date, incomplete, or vague job descriptions lead to confusion, employee disengagement, and increased risk in labor litigation.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Transform job descriptions into living documents.
  • Design a job description template and process that encourage rather than inhibit regular updates.
  • Have job descriptions inform regularly occurring manager-employee conversations.
  • Create buy-in for your new template and process by providing effective support for managers and building on early successes.

Impact and Result

  • Use McLean & Company’s process to select and tailor the right type of template(s) for your organization.
  • Simplify the process to ease the burden of creating, updating, and maintaining job descriptions for all stakeholders.
  • Turn job descriptions into living documents that managers, HR, and employees find value in.


  • Tim Baker, Human Resources Consultant, Winners-at-Work
  • Don Berman, Principal & VP of Professional Services, HRTMS
  • Joel de los Santos, Compensation Expert, Bayer
  • Ainsley Desautels, HR Consultant, Credit Union Central of Manitoba Ltd.
  • Scott Elder, Human Resources Manager, Hastings Prince Edward Public Health
  • Candace Funk, Job Evaluation Specialist, University of Manitoba
  • Mathew Sebastian, Human Resource Specialist – Compensation, University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT)
  • Stella Strickland, Job Description Facilitator, Government of Nova Scotia
  • Mary Whitney Thuell, Founding Member, Legacy Law Firm PLLC

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Get to Action

  1. Establish a multi-purpose template

    Evaluate existing job descriptions (JDs) to pinpoint opportunities for integration across HR functions and determine the appropriate template type to create tailored JD templates.

  2. Develop a process for creating and updating job descriptions

    Identify the best process and workflow for creating and updating JDs while avoiding common JD process pitfalls.

  3. Train stakeholders and implement the process

    Customize the Job Description Launch Deck and Job Description Writing Guide, and then select a pilot group for the rollout.

Guided Implementation icon Guided Implementation

This guided implementation is a seven call advisory process.

    Guided Implementation #1 - Establish a multi-purpose template

  • Call #1: Discuss and evaluate your existing job descriptions and job description templates.

  • Call #2: Identify ways to integrate job descriptions into HR functions that make sense for your organization.

  • Call #3: Review your job description template design.

  • Guided Implementation #2 - Develop a process for creating and updating job descriptions

  • Call #1: Discuss common process pitfalls and strategies to avoid them.

  • Call #2: Review your job description update and creation process.

  • Guided Implementation #3 - Train stakeholders and implement the process

  • Call #1: Review your Job Description Writing Guide.

  • Call #2: Discuss your launch plan and review your Job Description Launch Deck.

Onsite Workshop

Module 1: Establish a Multi-Purpose Template and Develop a Process for Creating and Updating Job Descriptions

The Purpose

  • Understand the current job description (JD) process and uncover pain points that create hardship and prevent efficiencies.
  • Design tailored JD templates and remodel the JD process.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Use McLean & Company’s job description framework to develop informed JD templates and a sustainable JD process.

Activities: Outputs:
1.1 Evaluate current JD templates.
  • Current JD templates evaluated using role description examples
1.2 Pinpoint how JDs can be integrated into other HR functions.
  • Integrated JDs that reinforce HR and organizational strategy
1.3 Identify employee segments that may need a separate JD template.
  • Employee segments with unique JD needs identified
1.4 Tailor a JD template.
  • Job description template(s)
  • Job description process
1.5 Evaluate current JD processes.
  • Current JD process reviewed and challenges identified
1.6 Design new JD processes.
  • Updated and structured JD workflow

Module 2: Create an Implementation and Stakeholder Training Plan

The Purpose

  • Develop supportive materials for JD stakeholders.
  • Begin to plan the JD process launch.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Gain stakeholder buy-in and display JD value with easy-to-use guides and effective training.

Activities: Outputs:
2.1 Customize launch deck and writing guide.
  • Job Description Launch Deck
  • Job Description Writing Guide
2.2 Develop a launch plan.
  • Action plan to implement the streamlined JD process and templates

Workshop Icon Book Your Workshop

Onsite Workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn’t enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our Project Workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a road map in place to complete your project successfully.

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