Position Classification

What is Position Classification?

Position classification is the process used to allocate a position's defined duties and responsibilities to a job standard. 

The position classification process involves reviewing the duties and responsibilities assigned to a position. 

What is the difference between Classification and Pay?

  • Classification is based on the assigned duties and involves placing positions with specific duties into appropriate job groupings.
  • Pay is based on classification but is also influenced by other factors, such as labor market considerations and longevity.

Classification Review

There are three ways in which classification reviews are initiated:

  1. Management-initiated review - When the employee, the supervisor, or manager has recognized a change in job content, or new duties have been assigned, a review may be requested. When new duties have been assigned, a review may be requested by the supervisor.
  2. Classification Grievance - Employees covered by collective bargaining agreements may process an appeal for a reclassification review; by filing a grievance of their position if they feel that their position is improperly classified.
  3. Classification Survey - HR may conduct a study of all positions in:

a. A specific organizational work unit or an occupational group.


b. If identical work is performed by more than one employee, a sample or percentage is reviewed.

The Classification Review Process

The people who have a role in the position review process are:

  • Employee
  • Supervisor and Manager
  • Classification Manager 

The Employee is responsible for ensuring their job description is up to date and approved by their supervisor.

Supervisors and Managers are responsible for the following tasks:

  • Provide the Classification Manager with position descriptions and other information related to the position 
  • Assign work to positions based on operational need
  • Educate employees on the classification review process
  • Provide accurate information to the Classification Manager upon request
  • MOST IMPORTANTLY, do not make any promises to employees

Classification Manager is responsible for the following tasks: 

  • Data Gathering-Reviewing position descriptions, scheduling desk audits (if needed), discussing duties with employees and validating employee discussions with managers/ supervisors.
  • Analysis

Classification Manager looks at the following allocation factors:

  • The nature and complexity of the work performed
  • The controls placed on the work
  • Supervision received
  • Available guidelines
  • Working relationships
  • Nature and scope of recommendations

The following factors are NOT considered when analyzing work:

  • Length of service
  • Personality
  • Volume of work assigned

Recommendations/Decision-Classification Manager measures the allocation factors of the position using the job specifications and also looks at benchmarks to make a recommendation/ decision.