Position Descriptions

A position description is a formal definition of the duties, responsibilities and working relationships of a specific job. It provides a common understanding for you and your supervisor of the requirements and expectations of your position.

Position Description Content

A position description typically includes: the primary responsibilities of the position and examples of specific tasks associated with each; working relationships inside and outside the department; skills and abilities necessary to perform the job; the kinds of creativity and problem-solving abilities required as well as the degree of autonomy allowed.


Position Descriptions should be reviewed and/or updated once a year, in conjunction with an employee's performance evaluation. A paper copy, along with an electronic copy, of the signed position description should be provided to Human Resources a minimum of every 3 years. In addition, a position description should be reviewed and/or updated in the following situations:

  • Based on organizational need
  • When duties have changed significantly
  • When the position becomes vacant

Writing a Position Description

  1. Access the applicable Position Description forms from the HR web site. 
  2. Review the current position description to determine if it is appropriate to make changes. For classified positions, review/print the applicable Job Class Specification (available on MMB’s web site) and review the Field Explanations document.
  3. If appropriate, check with HR for examples of other position descriptions for positions performing similar work.
  4. Ask the incumbent questions and observe them work to make sure the description accurately reflects what the employee is doing and/or has been asked to perform.
  5. Write/update the position description.
  6. Once final, provide a paper copy along with an electronic copy of the completed and signed position description to Human Resources. You may also seek input from HR prior to finalizing the description with signatures.

Forms and Links