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Job Analysis Questionnaire (JAQ):

The JAQ is a unique instrument that allows clients to identify the competencies that are most important to successful performance in an individual job.  Typically, there will be from 8-12 Competencies that are rated as most important for successful performance in the job.  The selection process is aimed at assessing candidate’s alignment of education, work experience and developed competencies.  The candidate that is most aligned with the selection requirements is the best fit for filling the job.  By completing multiple JAQ's in a family of jobs, the organization can build a road map of competencies that change moving from one job to another in the job family.

The JAQ survey is given to the Job Content Experts (JCE)

panelin advance of a candidate search.  The JCE panel

(6-8 people)will be comprised of 2-3 job incumbents

who have been evaluated as performing at a high level,

along with 1-2 of these perhaps recently promoted out

of the target job. 

Others are:

1. 1-2 supervisors of the target job

2. 2-3 successful job incumbents

3. 2-3 colleagues who are intimately familiar with the

day to day work of the target job. 

4. It takes approximately 20 minutes for each person to complete the JAQ.  The JCE for the target job is assembled by HR and the Line Manager of the position being recruited.  The JAQ is comprised of 135 separate behavioral statements.  There are 5 behavioral examples for each competency.   JAQ has two parts, the first part for the JCE’s to rate which of the listed work behaviors is most important to successful performance in the subject job and the second part for the JCE’s to identify how frequently the incumbent in that job must demonstrate that behavior.  (click below for sample JAQ report)

When all the JAQ's are completed, the TAI testing system runs the JAQ output reports.   The JAQ output reports shows the top 12 competencies in rank order based on importance and most frequently used based JCE's aggregated ratings. Typically, there will be consensus agreement on the top 5-7 competencies and after that, there will be different points of view by the JCE’s based on their knowledge about the job.  HR will convene the JCE panel for about 2 hours to review the output.  Their job is to review these and then agree on the final list of desired competencies most strongly associated with successful performance on the job.  The output of this session leads to the creation of a competency profile for this job.  The JAQ answers the primary selection question “Can the Candidate Do the job?”  Do they have the demonstrated competencies to perform adequately in the job?


HR will use this list of agreed to competencies to create behavioral interview guides to be used by the designated interviewers.  This assures that the interviewers collect job relevant behavioral examples from the candidates that can be related to the level of competency expected from a successful candidate.  The rating of competencies using behavioral interviewing is the most accurate and valid way to assess the competency preparation of each candidate.  It assures that candidates are fairly rated against the selection criteria of the job.  When the results of the behavioral interviews are used in conjunction with professional, reliable personality and cognitive ability assessments, the ability of the organization to make more accurate predictions about each candidate’s capability to perform well in the open position is increased.  Fewer selection errors are made, employee turnover is reduced, productivity increased, and management reputation and confidence are increased.

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