Reengineer Specific Jobs

We’ve talked before about how necessary it is to review the needs of the company and any changes it might have undergone, especially before interviewing to fill job positions. As your needs and the company’s needs change over time, redefine your jobs and the behaviors needed for successful performance.

I just want the same person I had before….

Jane and Bob have found that too often when someone leaves their company, they “rehire” the same type of person with the same skills. How often have you heard “I need to find another Barbara” or “We need to hire an exact copy of Jamal”?

Instead, Jane and Bob should be regularly examining all of the positions in the company. “Regularly” depends upon the company, size, growth, turnover, and many other factors. However, at a minimum, Jane and Bob should look at job function every two to three years. They may decide to make no changes, but it’s the examination and assessment process that is helpful.

Job function complacency

As companies grow, we often become complacent about job functions. Here’s something else you might have heard: “If it’s not broke, why fix it?” But that philosophy might just mean that you pass up on the company being great, instead of just working like it did before. If Jane and Bob hire simply on need, without reassessing what talent they need to take their department to the next level, they might be forfeiting the opportunity to weed out weak links in the company.

Here we go talking about change again…

Companies’ needs change, and so do your needs for the skills, talent, behaviors, and attitudes. You need to not only work efficiently but also to make the company even more successful.

That doesn’t mean to throw out everything; it does mean, however, that successful companies are constantly assessing what they need to help them get to the next steps. Sometimes this means Jane and Bob have to “uplevel” the position. It may mean bringing on someone at a higher level instead of someone who does a good job but can’t get them to the next level. At times, it means reengineering an entire department. It might even mean creating an entirely new position.

Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work forever in the future. This is the single biggest mistake companies make.

When Jane and Bob reassess the jobs and their functions, they need to reassess what they would use to measure success in the position. The success metrics for a CFO of a $1 million company may be completely different now that it’s an $8 million company. The sales person they might have hired five years ago because they could pay the sales person very little base salary and all commission may be a poor investment today as the learning curve is so steep that it takes years to become productive.

Final thoughts from Jane and Bob

It’s not an indication that you don’t care about people when you reassess and reengineer positions and job functions; it’s just the opposite. Everyone benefits when companies grow and leaders demonstrate leadership. If the reengineered position doesn’t fit those who have helped you get where you are, then find a new role within the company that does, if possible.