The level of duties and educational requirements should be in balance. For example, very few classified staff positions require master’s degrees. In any unit, there should be a greater number of classified than professional staff. Remember that professional staff positions should be the exception, not the routine choice.

Job duties determine the salary level. For example, if you need to pay a lower salary because of budgetary constraints, then the duties need to be consistent with the salary level. This works in the reverse as well; do not request a high salary if the job duties do not warrant it.

Do not combine two positions into one because of funding when the parts are not equal. In other words, if a position will work on more than one project, duties on all projects should be at the same level. Most importantly, do not combine classified staff duties with professional staff duties.

Professional staff positions are set by grade. Be familiar with what each grade means. Differences between grades are the duties, educational requirements, work experience – all of which then determine the salary range. Grades are not random or arbitrary.

The Division and the Compensation Office will review the position request to determine if the grade, salary, and educational requirements match the duties. The duties are the component on which all other pieces are determined. This is why developing a thorough, accurate job description is critical.

Writing the Job Description – Classified Staff

  • Consider the following:
  • What is the position’s primary purpose?
  • What are the general duties?
  • Are any duties unique to this position?
  • Does the position have lead or supervisory responsibilities?
  • What are the REQUIRED skills, knowledge, abilities, or experience?

Each classified job title has established educational and experience requirements. We must follow these guidelines in our requests. View the complete list of Classified job titles and descriptions on the Human Resources website.

Writing the Job Description – Professional Staff

Consider the following:

  • What are the exemption criteria that classify the position as a professional staff position?
  • What are the education and work experience qualifications?
  • What is the level of difficulty in thinking and problem solving?
  • At what level will personal interactions occur?
  • How much supervision will this position be responsible for?
  • What are the working conditions (i.e., work schedule, deadlines, etc.)?
  • What is the impact of this position on the University of Washington?

View more information on hiring professional staff.