Terminology Talk – Job vs. Position

January 28, 2022

We commonly use the terms Job and Position interchangeably, but there is a technical difference. Positions are separate business objects that we can create and modify without the necessity of a worker in the position. This distinction means that Positions may be unfilled, filled, or closed. Jobs, however, must always have a worker. These distinctions are reflected in Workday’s two staffing models for supervisory organizations; Position Management (PM) and Job Management (JM). Since JM organizations do not have positions, they are always “fully staffed” as no vacant positions exist.

Here is an analogy. Think of jobs as eggs. The combination of egg yolks (workers) and egg whites (positions) is a job. In a JM org, the eggs are always scrambled. You can have both egg whites (vacant positions) and whole eggs (filled positions) in a PM organization.

So, are the two terms distinguished strictly by the staffing model? No, even in a PM org, one can refer to a filled position as a “job.” An example of this is the Change Job business process. That process is available in both PM and JM orgs, but in PM organizations, it is only available for jobs, which in the case of PM orgs means filled positions. You can initiate Start Job Change for a worker but not for a vacant position. Compared to Edit Position Restrictions, which you can perform on a position with or without a worker. In other words, processes with “job” in the name will require a worker, but processes with “position” in the name require a position (vacant or filled). And “job requisitions?” That business process is for finding a worker to create a job.

News tags:
news terminology