For the majority of positions classified in the University System, the Minimum Acceptable Qualifications (MAQs), as specified in the class specifications, are appropriate for testing, referral, and certification purposes. However, the duties and responsibilities associated with some positions are such that incumbents, or candidates for vacancies in these positions, must necessarily possess certain other job-related qualifications in addition to, or more specific than, those defined in the class specification. Without these necessary additional qualifications, or requirements, incumbents or candidates for these vacant positions could not be expected to satisfactorily perform in the position. The specific additional qualification(s) required for such positions are called specialty factor(s).
A specialty factor is a specific knowledge, skill, ability, or other work characteristic assigned to a position and is considered basic to and essential for satisfactory performance of the duties and responsibilities of the position and a prerequisite to appointment in the position.
It is important to recognize the difference between specialty factors that represent qualifications necessary for complete and satisfactory performance in a position, as opposed to otherwise desirable or preferred qualifications, that represent experience and/or training which may aid in identifying the better-qualified candidates or merely assist in the overall performance in a position. In the latter situation, the desirable or preferred qualifications are not necessary for the candidate to completely and satisfactorily perform the duties and responsibilities of the position and, therefore, may not be used as specialty factors.
Employers must request that a specialty factor be attached to any designated position in a classification, whether currently filled or vacant. Authorization for a specialty factor attachment to a position is based on a thorough review of the position duties/responsibilities and its relationship to the specialty factor. In some instances, authorization for a specialty factor is not required. (See Section 4.3)