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Job Specifications

Job Specifications describe the framework to ensure like pay for like work within the city’s merit-based personnel system. Furthermore, job specifications provide the basic framework for recruitment, compensation performance management, and employee development. They also provide a means of determining the allocation of work, lines of authority, and other relationships between positions.

The job specification is a written statement that sets forth the characteristic duties and responsibilities that distinguish a given classification from other classifications, and the minimum education, experience and licensure/certification requirements necessary for appointment to a position in that classification. 

Groupings of classification that are similar in the nature of work performed are applied to specific occupational groups. All Career Service job classifications are assigned to an occupational group.

All career service job classifications are assigned to an occupational group. Occupational groups are groupings of classifications that are so similar in the nature of the work performed that the same market adjustments resulting from the annual market pay survey can be applied. Within each occupational group there are benchmark classes, which are the classes for which pay data is collected in the market survey process.  All non-elected, non-appointed, non-collectively bargained classifications are assigned pay grades.  Pay grades are identifying numbers for pay ranges within a pay schedule. A pay range represents the prevailing market range of pay in a grade, beginning at the entry rate and going to a maximum rate.

A progressive classification series is an arrangement of classes in sequence that are alike in kind but not in level. In other words, it is a series of classifications that typically consists of entry, developmental and full performance level where the levels of the duties are different, but the types of duties and nature of the work are the same. The progressive classification series program is designed to delegate classification reallocation responsibly to agency/department appointing authorities and/or supervisors. The Office of Human Resources works with agencies/departments to develop appropriate reallocation factors and criteria which appointing authorities/supervisors use to make classification reallocation recommendations. Appointing authorities/supervisors use the progressive classification series reallocation form to process reallocations.

If a position is to be reallocated based on approval within a progressive classification series, the effective date shall be the Sunday after the appointing authority's signature.

When an employee meets the requirements to progress to a higher classification in a current delegated progressive classification series and the executive director approves the progression to the higher classification, the employee’s pay shall be increased by two and one quarter percent (2.25%). In no event shall the employee receive less than the range minimum of the pay range of the new classification.

Refer to the Quick Reference Guide: Progressive Classification Series.

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Classification FAQs

An individual position audit is a fact-finding investigation of the work performed by an employee in a given position. It includes a review of the work processes, materials processed, actions taken, tools used, supervision exercised and received, all for the purpose of analyzing the type and level of duties and responsibilities assigned to the position.

An appointing authority may request an audit of a position or a supervisor can request a position audit and should work with the agency Human Resources Business Partner. An audit request should occur when there has been a significant change in the type or level of duties and responsibilities.

As a result of an individual position audit there may be four potential outcomes.

  1. No change to the position’s classification,
  2. Reallocation of the position to a classification at the same pay grade in a different occupational area.
  3. Upgrade of the position to a classification at a higher pay grade, or
  4. Downgrade of the position to a classification at a lower pay grade.

When a position is re-allocated to another classification, the incumbent’s pay will not change unless the reallocation causes their pay to be less than the range minimum of the pay range of the new classification. In that case the employee’s pay shall be set at the range minimum of the pay range of the new classification.


A promotion is an appointment of an employee to a vacant position in a new classification with a completely new set of duties. An employee must compete for the position by applying for the position and upon appointment an employee must serve a probationary period. Reallocation refers to a permanent change in a filled position resulting from a gradual change in the type and level of essential duties.

An appointing authority may temporarily assign the duties of a vacant position in a higher-level classification to an employee in a lower-level classification for a period of one year. Assignments for periods longer than one year require the approval of the Office of Human Resources executive director. Employees are eligible for additional pay for such assignments when they have been assigned all of the duties and responsibilities of the vacant position in the higher-level classification.