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Results-Oriented Job Descriptions


A New Approach

Currently, job descriptions for too many Educational Support Personnel (ESP) are:

  • Inaccurate
  • Dictated without employee involvement, or
  • Nonexistent

The lack of a clear job description can create problems and confusion for both the employee and employer. A new approach — using a results-oriented job description — provides clear job expectations for the employee and for the supervisor (which can decrease misunderstandings). It builds the connection between the employe's work and the mission of the school. It identifies for employees and supervisors not only the duties or tasks required of the job, but also how those duties improve student achievement. In addition, by focusing a job description on the results of the work, the community can better understand and appreciate what the employee does.

A New Manual

National Education Association is developing a manual on results-oriented job descriptions, evaluation, and professional development, which will help local associations identify the results of each ESP's work, the duties needed to achieve the result, and how those results improve student achievement. The manual will also help local associations provide the link between job descriptions, evaluations, and professional development.

Results-oriented job descriptions can facilitate real communication between the local association and board of education. Together the association and the board can look at what outcomes are necessary, and focus on the results of the work. They can answer such questions as:

  • What is the purpose of this work?
  • Why is this work important?
  • What is accomplished by performing these tasks?
  • How do we accomplish the performance of these tasks in order to provide quality education in the school system?

When considering developing results-oriented job descriptions, consult your Association Representative, UniServ Director, or UniServ office.

Why Use Results-Oriented Job Descriptions?

For Members

  • Create a strong professional identity
  • Provide for improved communications between employees and supervisors
  • Encourage the formation of appropriate professional development programs

Thus, results-oriented job descriptions provide additional job security.

For Local Associations

  • Provide an opportunity to create and enhance dialogue with the administration, the school board, and the community about the need for clear job responsibilities for ESP members
  • Produce concrete evidence of the value of ESP member' work when associations advocate for improved salary, benefits, and working conditions
  • Help teachers and ESP better understand the critical role ESP members play in educating students

For the Community

  • Create understanding throughout the system and the broader community about the value of the work accomplished by ESP members
  • Enhance the work identity and professionalism of ESP
  • Stimulate discussion about the critical role ESP have in improving student achievement

What Is a Results-Oriented Job Description?

A job description should be a comprehensive statement of all that the job includes. Accurate job descriptions, using results-oriented job descriptions, are a new way of looking at responsibilities, tasks, skills, and human relations — a new approach.

A results-oriented job description does more than describe what a person does (the tasks); it also describes what a person accomplishes (the results). By using a results-oriented job description to describe the accomplishments of Educational Support Personnel (ESP), the Association can highlight the importance of ESP members' roles in building quality public education.

Example: School Custodian
Traditional Duties-Oriented Job Description Results-Oriented Job Description
  • Sweep, vacuum, and dust classrooms
  • Secure the building
  • Other tasks

Provide for a safe and healthy environment for students and staff


  • Sweeping, vacuuming and dusting classrooms
  • Securing the building
  • Other tasks

For additional information about the NEA's ROJD project, contact Rafael Rivera at

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