[IPAC-List] Test Requirements within Job Progressions

Heim, Janis Janis.Heim at nebraska.gov
Tue Apr 7 15:05:31 EDT 2009


I would like to say it would depend on whether the job functions in question meet the standard of what the ADA called a "core duty," but I think that may just restate your problem another way. When the Lead Mechanic performs the functions with the higher level requirements, is it that there is no one else to do so, or that there will be significant harm if he or she does not do so? If so, then require the higher level. If it is just that sometimes the Lead Mechanic might be the one to do the functions when others could, but the Lead Mechanic needs to share the load or keep his or her hand in, I would not. More fairness or nice-to-have are not requirements. Necessary to do the work on time or up to standard or to maintain safety would be. My question would be how necessary is the "when necessary" and then I would make my decision based on that. Is that any help?

Janis Heim
janis.heim at nebraska.gov
Personnel Selection Analyst

-----Original Message-----
From: ipac-list-bounces at ipacweb.org [mailto:ipac-list-bounces at ipacweb.org] On Behalf Of Reindl, Kevin
Sent: Tuesday, April 07, 2009 1:22 PM
To: IPAC-List at ipacweb.org
Subject: [IPAC-List] Test Requirements within Job Progressions

Hello IPAC folks,

I have a question that I have encountered many times before, but thought
I'd get some fresh perspectives from the IPAC group:

We have validated a battery of physical ability tests for a number of
jobs in our company. Based on the job analyses, we have grouped the jobs
into 3 levels of physical demand ("very high," "high" and "moderate"
physical demand jobs). The same battery validated nicely for all jobs
(i.e., criterion validity), the difference being that we have
established cutoff scores that correspond to the job group levels. So
the very high jobs will have the highest cutoff score and the moderate
jobs will require the lowest cutoff score.

The problem I'm grappling with is that many of the jobs reside within a
progression (e.g., Assistant Mechanic, Mechanic, and Lead Mechanic),
however, the jobs are not always in the same physical demand group. So,
for example, the Assistant Mechanic and Mechanic jobs may fall within
the "very high" category, while the Lead Mechanic falls within the
"high" category.

Operationally, the Lead Mechanics (in addition to their lead role
functions) are expected to "perform the functions of lower level jobs
within the progression as necessary." There is concern from the
clients/department that the Lead Mechanics, if only required to meet the
"high" physical demand cutoff, will not be "qualified" to safely and
effectively perform the lower job level functions when necessary.

>From both a psychometric and legal perspective, I'm struggling with how

to handle this issue. Would it be a legal minefield if we required a
higher cutoff for jobs that MAY OCCASIONALLY perform job functions of
other/lower level jobs?

Anyone have advice, opinions, or similar stories with a happy ending?

Kevin Reindl

Sr. People Research Advisor

San Diego Gas & Electric

Human Resources

8306 Century Park Court, CP41A

San Diego, CA 92123-1530

Tel: 858-654-1823

Fax: 858-654-1515

Email: kreindl at semprautilities.com

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