District Employees & Administrators Reclassification 101

What are the basics of classification?
Why is a classification/reclassification study necessary?
Who can initiate a classification study?
How do I request a classification study?
How is the study conducted?
What is the process of the position audit?
What factors are not considered in a classification study?
How is the outcome of the reclassification request determined?


What are the basics of classification?

Classification: (sometimes referred to as "Class"): A group of positions sufficiently similar in duties and responsibilities that the same descriptive title may be used to designate each position allocated to it: substantially the same requirements of education, experience, knowledge, and ability are demanded of incumbents: substantially the same tests of fitness may be used in choosing qualified appointees; and the same salary range may be applied with equity. A classification may consist of one or many positions, and may at times have no incumbents in it, but continue to exist for future use.

Class Title: A definite descriptive title or name applied to a class and to all positions of the class to be taken with the meaning set forth in the description of the class as embodied in the specifications, and to be as descriptive as possible of the duties and responsibilities.

Job Specification: A formal statement of the duties and responsibilities performed by the positions in the classification, illustrated by examples of typical tasks, and of the qualification requirements of the positions in the class.

Duty Statement: a list of the specific duties, work behaviors and responsibilities assigned to an individual position in a classification prepared by the department for review by the Personnel Commission for the purpose of conducting a classification/reclassification study or to be used by the Board of Education in establishing a new position. Note: When preparing duties statements, the job specification description should not be copied since it is intended as a general description of the entire job class, not the individual position.

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Why is a classification/reclassification study necessary?

One of the ways that the Personnel Commission serves the District Administration and classified employees of the District is by assuring that their positions are consistently and equitably classified. This is accomplished by conducting classification and reclassification studies. A study should be initiated whenever there is concern that an employee is being asked to perform work that falls outside of his/her job classification on a permanent basis.

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Who can initiate a classification study?

A study may be initiated by the Classified Human Resources Department staff if there is a significant change in department/unit organization function, process, goals, technology, or equipment causes concern that a current classification is no longer consistent with the duties/responsibilities of either a single position or group of positions that were allocated to that classification previously.

Classification studies of existing positions may also be initiated at the request of administrators, employees, and organizations representing classified employees (ie. CSEA) if it appears that there may have been a substantial change in duties and responsibilities in a position either over time or due to a sudden reorganization of duties/responsibilities.

If the employee and the supervisor disagree as to which duties and responsibilities are assigned, it is best to resolve those issues prior to the time a study is requested. Nevertheless, a signature on the form does not necessarily indicate advocacy or endorsement of reclassification of the position.

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How do I request a classification study?

A Classified Position Questionnaire must be completed and submitted to the Classified Human Resources office to initiate the process. This form is also available under Employmee Resources/Forms & Procedures.

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How is the study conducted?

Classified Human Resources staff usually "audits" the position by interviewing the incumbent, observing work processes, and verifying the duties and responsibilities of the incumbent. In some cases it maybe necessary to evaluate employees in similar positions within the same classification.

Classified Human Resources staff may also meet with the employee’s supervisor to verify the duties/responsibilities that are formally assigned to the position. Only a sample of the total number of positions under study is audited when a large number of positions exist.

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What is the process of the position audit?

Classified Human Resources staff will contact the incumbent to arrange for a position audit. It is preferable that an audit be conducted at the incumbent’s workspace as a means of providing the reviewer a holistic view of the job and the context in which the work is typically performed. Approximately two hours should be allotted by the incumbent for the classification audit. During the audit staff may ask questions to help evaluate the scope, complexity and course of work performed by the incumbent. There is no need to prepare any written responses in advance. A frank and spontaneous discussion is preferred. The incumbent, however, may wish to prepare notes for his/her own use to assure that all pertinent information is shared with staff. Examples of completed assignments and copies of work samples are useful to obtain during the review process.

Examples of questions that staff may ask include: What is the department organization? Who is your immediate supervisor? What are your primary duties and responsibilities? What percentage of time do you spend performing a duty? What is the consequence if the work is not performed? What type of computer software do you use? At the completion of the audit, Personnel Commission staff should have a good understanding of the position. Generally, incidental, infrequent or emergency assignments will not be considered in classifying positions. The position will be evaluated based upon all the information made available.

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What factors are not considered in a classification study?
  • Individual employee qualifications or how well a worker performs his/her job.
  • The number of workers in a classification assigned to a site.
  • The number of hours a worker is assigned to work in an assignment.
  • How long the incumbent has held the position or worked for the District.
  • The quantity or volume of work performed by an individual or group (level of work, not volume, is an important consideration).
  • How much the worker currently earns.

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How is the outcome of the reclassification request determined?

Following the classification audit, the Classified Human Resources staff will evaluate the data collected. In those cases where multiple positions are studied, data will be synthesized for a holistic view of the classification and its use across the various positions in the District. In some cases it may be necessary to survey other organizations (ie. school districts that have similar classifications) to compare the duties and responsibilities with that of the subject position and to assess alignment of titles, salaries, entrance qualifications, and other potential differentiating factors.

Recommendations are typically discussed with the administration and incumbents of affected positions prior to formal action by the Personnel Commission.

For further information on the rules pertaining to classification and reclassification, please refer to the Personnel Commission Rules/Regulations. For any additional questions that you may have, please contact the Classified Human Resources Office at 805.497.9511.

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Conejo Valley Unified School District
1400 E Janss Rd.
Thousand Oaks, CA 91362
(805) 497-9511

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