Task performance is associated with the set of behaviors relevant to the process of converting resources available to an organization into the products or services (Colquitt, LePine, & Wesson, 2012). Every job description focuses on the various task performance behaviors pertinent to the position. It outlines tasks, duties, and responsibilities that a future employee would have to carry out in order to uphold their part of an employment contract.
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Those specific activities can fit into three categories: creative, adaptive, and routine (CAR) (Colquitt et al., 2012). Classifying task performance helps to analyze different jobs across the employment spectrum and understand the extent to which particular activities are routine or fluctuating.
Creative Task Performance
Creative task performance can be assessed by the degree to which explicit obligations of an employee require the implementation of new ideas and approaches (Kaifi, Khanfar, Nafei, & Kaifi, 2013). The database assistants are often assigned with the task of creation of department memos using specific data. The creative category of job performance is based on improvisational learning and action (Høyrup, 2012).
From this perspective, employee’s ability to perform creative tasks is based on their openness and spontaneity in dealing with the variety of emerging situations during the work process. Therefore, the successful database assistant has to have a sufficient level of cognitive knowledge that would allow them to reframe the existing situation in order to solve a problem (Høyrup, 2012).
Adaptive Task Performance
Adaptive task performance involves specific responses to work activities that are novel and unpredictable. This general category requires employees to shift their behavior from performing undemanding, mechanical tasks to demonstrating their “adaptability” (Colquitt et al., 2012). The database assistant is responsible for reporting and documentation, among other duties. Their ability to adapt to novel tasks is often tested when they have to deal with changing database software. The Assistant’s duty also includes the development of forms and drafting correspondence based on specific information (Blake, n.d.).
The job of database assistance requires a great level of autonomy and emphasizes on individual’s ability to organize their work process in such a manner that the need for monitoring of their progress by superiors would be reduced to a minimum. According to Erez, the empowerment of employees plays a key role in the creation of a unique and individualistic culture (2010). Autonomy also serves as a motivational factor that significantly contributes to positive work outcomes. The high empowerment design of the database assistant job shifts the performance model from control-based to skill-based (Erez, 2010).
Routine Task Performance
The responsibilities of the database assistant include managing various types of data and providing record keeping support, as well as clerical duties, dictated by an organizational setting in which they work. Therefore, the database assistant should be a person with a high level of self-organization and multitasking skills (Blake, n.d.).
The routine category of task performance of the database assistant involves the collection of data from numerous sources such as websites and organization reports. It requires following simple instructions that do not differ significantly from one case to another. All data collection activities involve routine and predictable operations that are usually performed in a highly habitual way. It can be argued that the data collection part of the job of a database assistant fits into the mechanistic job design approach (Campion & Thayer, 1987). Although this performance orientation is characterized by simplification and specialization process that minimizes the possibility of error occurrence, there are also numerous disadvantages to it.
According to Campion and Thayer, a mechanistic approach to job design might result in low employee motivation and high rates of absenteeism (1987).
The majority of the working activities of the database assistant are related to data management and other repetitive tasks that do not require a creative approach and are mechanical in their nature. Therefore, it can be argued that eighty percent of job performance is associated with routine tasks. Navigation of the report data in order to draft organizational memos containing concise information related to quantity, quality, and financial metrics, among others, is another aspect of the database assistant job (Blake, n.d.).
Considering that those duties cannot be quantified by specifically measurable criteria, it can be said that creative task performance constitutes approximately fifteen percent of work activities. Since changes to database software are being introduced very rarely, adaptive task performance constitutes only five percent of the database assistant’s activities. In order to make this job more meaningful, the performance orientation should be shifted from routine-oriented to creation-oriented.
Responsibilities: developing/maintenance of data extracts and the creation of statistical reporting in accordance with specifications of relevant data protection legislation. The position requires the generation of reports and documents on a daily basis. Participation in the training of new employees might be needed. The preferred candidates will be granted a high-security access level and involved in statistical reporting. The employee has to have excellent interpersonal and multitasking skills and should be detail-oriented. The position requires a demonstration of the ability to work under pressure with the minimum amount of supervision. The ideal candidate should have strong knowledge of C# or VB. NET, as well as previous experience with extract transform load (ETL) processes.
Blake, I. (n.d.). The Responsibilities of a Database Assistant. Web.
Campion, M., & Thayer, P. (1987). Job design: Approaches, outcomes, and trade-offs. Organizational Dynamics, 15(3), 66-79.
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Colquitt, J., LePine, J., & Wesson, M. (2012). Organizational behavior. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Higher Education.
Erez, M. (2010). Culture and job design. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 31(2-3), 389-400.
Høyrup, S. (2012). Employee-driven innovation. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.
Kaifi, B., Khanfar, N., Nafei, W., & Kaifi, M. (2013). The Need for Human Resource Managers to Understand and Prepare for Future Employees: A Study on the Perceptions of Business Students on Job Performance. Journal of Management and Sustainability, 3(4), 103-109.