Writing a Role Profile

Writing a Role Profile
The role profile is a concise document that describes what the job has to achieve and the skills, knowledge, experience and behaviours required
to ensure successful delivery of the role. This document can be used as a basis for recruitment, performance management, job evaluation,
succession planning and development.
Typically a role profile is structured as follows:
Job Title:
Job Holder:
A one sentence accurate and concise statement of why the job exists
Key Result Areas
Key Performance Indicators
Skills, Knowledge and
What outputs are required?
How will delivery be measured?
Between 8 – 10 bullet points
Facts and figures that give scale and scope
What input is required from the
Job Holder?
Reports To:
How is the Job Holder expected
to perform?
Role Purpose
One sentence should normally be adequate. It will be easier to write this statement if you complete the Key Result Areas first.
The following format is a helpful way of constructing a Role Purpose statement.
To do something ...
... to something ...
... with a specified result or to a specified standard.
For example, the Role Purpose of a Principal might be:
To provide professional leadership
and management
. . . to the College/Learning provider
... to ensure continued development and delivery of innovative
learning opportunities to meet the needs of learners, local
businesses and the community.
Key Result Areas
These statements are a summary of the key end results required from the job. They should identify what the job has to do and why. You should
not list every detailed task involved in the job, but focus on the key outputs for which the job is responsible.
The suggested Role Purpose format is also a useful way of drafting Key Result statements. For example:
Taken together, the Key Result Areas should summarise all the important outputs required from the job - i.e. they should be sufficient to deliver
the Role Purpose.
They should not include any specific targets or objectives, but should refer to the ongoing responsibilities of the job.
Key Result statements should:
Describe end results or major activities rather than detailed tasks.
Emphasise the action which leads to the end result.
Be distinct and separate from each other.
Be timeless
Be precise and realistic.
For most jobs there will be 6-8 statements.
Key Performance Indicators
KPIs are ways in which performance in the job can be measured. They should be linked to the Key Result Areas.
This is not a list of annual targets or objectives. KPIs are the ongoing measures which can be used to assess job success. Once you have
established the KPIs, they will help you with annual objective-setting.
KPIs should be:
clear and measurable
reasonable and realistic
within the control of the jobholder
You do not need to have a KPI for each Key Result Area but it is useful to start from the Key Result Areas and ask for each “how can success be
Knowledge, Skills & Experience
This section provides a summary of the Knowledge, Skills and Experience necessary to carry out the job at a fully acceptable level of
performance. In order to attract candidates from outside the FE sector this section should focus on the non-FE specific skills and experience
required for the vacancy. Avoid using language and terminology specific to FE as this will discourage applicants from outside the sector.
In considering what is required, review the Key Result areas and identify the essential knowledge, skills and experience required. Formal
qualifications and experience in the sector may not always be the most important thing unless they are specific to the job. For instance, is it
necessary to have formal teaching qualifications for a senior management or Principal role or is knowledge of current key issues in FE (which can
be separately acquired) the requirement? Would particular experience and knowledge be more important in delivering the required job outputs? It
is also important to consider alternative or equivalent qualifications that individuals may have.
Key Behaviours or Leadership Qualities (See Using Leadership Qualities or Behaviours)
These are the key behaviours required for success in a role.
Is it useful to consider what personal qualities or characteristics the jobholder will need for success in the role?
The identified behaviours or Leadership Qualities should be those that will differentiate between an average and an excellent performer. And, as
all employers are desirous of an excellent not average performance these may be the most appropriate starting point.
These are the facts and figures that best reflect the responsibilities and scale of the job.
These may include:
Financial – Relevant figures that reflect the scale of the job, e.g. turnover, budgets, project costs, staff costs etc.
Staff - The number of staff reporting to the job, directly and indirectly.
Learner Population - The number of learners this role will have an impact on You may wish to present this in FTE or learner and
adult learner distinction depending on the role you are seeking to define and thereafter fill.
Checklist for Completing a Role Profile
On completing the role profile, it is worth reviewing the output and considering the following:
Is it clear, concise and understandable?
Using this profile, could you:
Price this job in the market?
Attract candidates without FE experience?
Develop a recruitment specification?
Identify suitable candidates and select someone for the job?
Manage the performance of someone in the job?
Make relative judgements about the ‘size’ of this job compared to other similar ones in the organisation?
Does this job look realistic in terms of capacity (activities involved) and capability (abilities required to do it)?
Are there any gaps?
Has the role profile been impact assessed in terms of equality and diversity?
Example of a Role Profile:
Assistant Director Quality & Curriculum Information
Contribute to the strategic management of the FE provider and lead the development and implementation of quality assurance systems and management
information systems to ensure that the FE provider achieves consistently high standards of quality and appropriate funding.
Key Result Areas
Key Performance
Skills, Knowledge and
As a member of the Senior Management Team, contribute to the strategic management of Awarding body
Graduate calibre
the FE provider in order to inform decision making and position the FE provider
People, financial, change
Annual assessment
and performance
Take the strategic lead and manage the development and implementation of the FE
management skills and
provider-wide quality assurance systems to ensure that the FE provider meets the
standards of external awarding bodies and inspectorates.
Communication skills
Prepare for and organise the FE provider’s involvement in all external assessments,
Course retention,
IT and analytical skills
Broad understanding of
inspections and visits to ensure that the FE provider obtains the desired course approvals
achievement and
and assessments.
success targets
quality and management
Lead and conduct course reviews with the Heads of School to ensure that the FE provider Appropriate course
information systems
continuously improves the quality of provision for learners.
Ability to interpret and apply
Manage the production and dissemination of learner and programme information to assist Efficient learner
in the planning and management of FE provider provision.
Ability to think and act
Manage the provision of information to funding bodies to ensure that the FE provider
enrolments and
receives the correct funding for each learner.
Manage the application and enrolment service to ensure that learners access the courses Achieve budget
that meet their requirements and abilities easily and promptly.
Manage the education maintenance allowance service to ensure that learners receive
their correct entitlements easily and promptly.
Manage the organisation of timetabling and exams to ensure that all courses and exams
take place in the proper manner.
Manage the development of Higher Education programmes to ensure that they are
appropriately validated.
Manage all employees, relevant budgets and performance in Quality and Curriculum
Information to deliver an efficient and effective service in accordance with FE provider
procedures and objectives.
23 staff; £1 million annual budget; £16 million student funding; 21,000 annual enrolments; 800 courses