Job re-design

Job re-design, rotation and redeployment may be designed for improving staff development, ‘right-job’ fit, productivity, employee retention and promotion. Change and modifications to job tasks and roles can be intended for either short or long term periods.

The underlying principle of facilitating job re-design, rotation and redeployment depends on the allocation of tasks that are in line with personal abilities.

As work abilities change with age, particularly in the context of physically demanding work, it is important that the job re-design, rotation and redeployment process occurs in consultation with a range of possible stakeholders such as the mature age worker, line managers, health physicians, and workplace health and safety professionals.

Benefits

Job re-design, rotation and redeployment can:

  • Improve employee performance (particularly in cases of high physical demand)
  • Reduce boredom while enhancing motivation, skill development and job satisfaction of the employee
  • Help to create new jobs (by expanding the internal labour market) as well as new roles
  • Assist in knowledge transfer between units and departments
  • Facilitate multi-skilling of your workforce
  • Assist during periods of work overload – for example, during times of short-term business overload which may result from seasonal influx or following promotional activity that has led to an influx in work quantity

Job re-design

Job re-design involves modifying tasks, duties and responsibilities of a specific job and enabling employees to remain in the job for longer in order to streamline and enhance the work experience for employees for organisations to ensure an age-friendly work environment.

Job re-design may be particularly relevant to employees with a higher degree of physical work or repetitive manual tasks. 

The job re-design process will involve an understanding and consideration of various tasks and outcomes associated with the job such as:

Work tasks

  • the day-to-day functions of the work
  • change in delivery methods
  • addition of job functions or the transfer of responsibilities to other workers with the aim of increasing productivity and motivation
  • reallocating tasks and duties through job rotations
  • taking any remedial action and modifying the job tasks and/or process as necessary any challenges presented 
  • trialling a pilot group to address issues 

Organisational objectives

  • performance or productivity stagnation
  • operational inefficiencies
  • high attrition or low retention
  • low employee engagement or satisfaction
  • new regulatory requirements
  • expansion into new markets

Re-training and technology

  • new or upgraded technology
  • automation of manual tasks
  • training staff in new functions, tasks and responsibilities

Communication

  • clear communication of information regarding the new roles and responsibilities, this includes the rationale behind such arrangements in order to better manage expectations
  • monitoring and evaluating the process through feedback in order to assess the results and track how workers are coping

Job rotation

Job rotation can involve individuals or groups of individuals on scheduled rotation of jobs, tasks and/or shifts. It is often used to reduce workloads and minimise the effects of stressful, monotonous or repetitive work tasks. It can also enhance job security for older workers, and provide opportunities for skills development.

Job redeployment

Job redeployment involves moving workers from one location or activity to another and is generally considered as a reaction to existing performance constraints. However, it may also be used in a preventive capacity to maintain employability.

Purpose and key considerations

The purpose of implementing job re-design/rotation/redeployment initiatives is to change elements of the job so that organisations can achieve maximum output. Organisational benefits of job-redesign include:

  • employee engagement
  • increased efficiency and productivity
  • improved quality 

The following factors need to be taken into consideration before deployment:

  • The employee must be willing to participate
  • A systematic approach must be taken
  • The employee’s capacity and ability should match the work requirements
  • Other stakeholders should be on board such as general practitioners or specialists, the union representative, HR department, line manager etc.
  • Limit or minimise the negative effects of redeployment such as a decrease in income (if possible)

Resources
For a full list of resources outlining further information on job re-design, rotation or redeployment and best practice examples, click here.

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