Defining Work Analysis

  • Ronald L. JacobsEmail author


The first chapter introduces work analysis as a critical part of human resource development (HRD) practice, especially with the emergence of knowledge work. The chapter defines work analysis as having two major components: first, to document the work that people do and, second, to understand the characteristics of the most successful people who perform a set of work. The techniques related to these two components are presented in the chapter. These two components are combined here for the first time since they reflect the challenges of contemporary HRD practice. The chapter also provides a historical context for understanding work analysis, starting with the early part of the twentieth-century Industrial Age. Finally, the chapter defines the basic terms that will be used throughout the book.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Illinois at Urbana ChampaignChampaignUSA

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