Position Descriptions

Tips for Writing Effective Position Descriptions b
HRS Position Number:
UW System Title:
Working Title (if applicable):
Employee Name:
Employee ID:
Percent of Appointment
Reports to (name and title):
Supervisory Position:
Position Summary Statement c
Essential Job Functions and Responsibilities d
EXAMPLE: (percentages can vary based upon position responsibilities – should total to 100%)
Essential Job Function 1
Task statement 1
Task statement 2
Task statement 3
Essential Job Function 2
Task statement 1
Task statement 2
Task statement 3
Essential Job Function 3
Task statement 1
Task statement 2
Task statement 3
Essential Job Function 4
Task statement 1
Task statement 2
Task statement 3
Knowledge/Skills and Abilities e
Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
Excellent judgment including sensitivity to personal and confidential information.
Excellent interpersonal, communication and customer service skills in working with a diverse
Working knowledge of desktop hardware and standard business software programs (e.g.
word processing, spreadsheets, database) and the Internet.
Have the ability to delegate and prioritize work.
Attention to detail, proofreading and editing skills.
Good work habits, such as attendance, punctuality, accountability, thoroughness and
Work independently and as part of a team environment and on collaborative efforts.
 Experience in a higher education environment.
 Bachelor’s Degree in Finance or related field.
Special Requirements
 Valid Driver’s license
Physical Demands f
While performing the duties of this position, the employee must have the mobility to work in a
standard office setting and to use standard office equipment, hearing and speech to converse in
person and over the telephone and vision to read printed materials and a computer screen.
Accommodation may be made for some of these physical demands for otherwise qualified
individuals who require and request such accommodation.
(Prepare a statement referencing the list of working conditions and environment in the position
description instructions below) i.e. Physical ability to sit at a computer terminal for extended
periods of time, Moderate amounts of walking, standing, and stair climbing; occasional lifting of
supplies up to 10 lbs.
Working Conditions and Environment g
There are no unusual working conditions or environmental factors associated with this position.
(Prepare a statement referencing the list of working conditions and environment as outlined in the
position description instructions below i.e. Some travel is required for necessary meetings,
workshops, conferences, etc. Occasional evening and and/or weekend work is expected and will be
assigned by supervisor as needed.
Position description should be reviewed annually and new signatures obtained when changes are made
to the position description. Please send signed position descriptions to Human Resources.
Employee Signature
Supervisor Signature
CUPA Code:
Former Incumbent:
The Position Description (PD) is a formal action-oriented document that summarizes the important
functions of a position using clear and concise language. Position descriptions begin with a careful analysis of
the important facts about a job, such as individual goals, worker activities and duties, and knowledge, skills,
and abilities needed to perform the job. It is important to make a job description practical by keeping it
functional and current. When writing the position description, keep in mind the PD will serve as a basis for
conducting future performance evaluations and identifying training needs. An accurate PD helps the
employee know what is expected by clearly defining the work to be performed in relation to the overall goals
of the work unit. The position description is also used as an information source for the development and
implementation of an effective recruitment and selection plan if a position becomes vacant. PDs also serve as
a source document for worker’s compensation and disability accommodation matters. The PD should be
completed cooperatively by the employee and the supervisor unless the position is new or vacant, in which
case it should be completed by the supervisor. The position description should be reviewed annually and
updated when the duties or skill requirements have changed. When significant job change has occurred,
supervisors are encouraged to call Human Resources at (715) 232-2438 to ensure that the position remains
properly titled.
b Always use the present tense of verbs. If necessary, use explanatory phrases telling why, how, where or
how often to add meaning and clarity. Omit any unnecessary articles such as “a,” “an,” “the,” or other words
for an easy to understand description. Use unbiased terminology. For example: use the he/she approach or
construct sentences in such a way that gender pronouns are not required. Avoid using words which are
subject to differing interpretations. Try not to use words such as “frequently,”, “some,”, “complex,”
“occasional,” and “several.”
c Generally a summary or overview of the general goals, purpose, and objectives of the position. Information
such as the level of supervision, department name, and the work hours should be included. Describe the
overall purpose of the position in a short paragraph.
d This section describes the major goals, duties and responsibilities of the position and should include
essential job duties critical to successful performance of the position. Goals are the expected results of each
employee’s work, while corresponding task statements are the specific duties the employee performs to
accomplish the goals. The percentage of time is the proportion of employee’s total work time spent on a goal
or worker activity. The PD should contain between two and six goals. List the major goals in descending
percentage order, with the goal consuming the largest percentage of time listed first. Be sure to group
common functions into Essential Job Function categories. Note: Goal percentages should total 100% even if
the position is less than full-time.
e Identify the necessary knowledge, skills and abilities needed to successfully perform the position’s duties.
May include sections for Required, Preferred, Desirable and any Special Requirements.
fOutline requirements of significant physical activity or ability. Ensure items contained in this section are
essential to the function of the position, otherwise include a statement related to accommodation (example
below). [Examples: lift (#), carry, push/pull, stand/sit, stoop, crouch, bend, climb, balance, reach, repetitive
motions, dexterity, hearing, vision, significant time operating equipment or machinery)]
g Outline unusual working conditions, if any. (Examples: light, heat, odors, noise, heights, danger, exposure to
inclement weather, irregular hours, driving, travel)