job title

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Is the name given to a particular job within an employing organization, with the component tasks that comprise the job being set out in an accompanying job description. Job titles are often rather curious and may not accurately capture the essence of a job. Often they use euphemistic or highly formal language; for example, ‘pest control officer’ instead of ‘rat-catcher’. They may also make a job sound more important than it actually is, often to satisfy the aspirations of employees or to attract applicants. For example, the suffix ‘manager’ or ‘executive’ appears in the titles of many decidedly modest jobs. Finally, job titles may be written so as to convey a particular meaning about the organization and its relationship to its employees. The common use of the word associate in many job titles is a case in point. For example, a job might be labelled ‘guest service associate’ rather than ‘receptionist’ within a hotel both to reinforce the centrality of customer service as a goal but also to suggest that the employee delivering such service is a valued member of the corporate team. In other words, job titles can have a symbolic as well as descriptive function within organizations. [See human resource manager.]

Subjects: Human Resource Management.

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