DACUM Analysis

The result of the first part of the DACUM process is a chart or profile that shows the duties and tasks performed in the occupation. The profile also lists necessary worker traits and attitudes, general skills and knowledge, and the tools and equipment the worker uses. Research indicates that DACUM profiles not only cost less than conducting job inventories by mail, they also produce more valid results. The DACUM process is not complicated, but the development of a quality training program entails additional steps.

Once a DACUM profile is developed and reproduced on paper, it should be validated by having other expert workers and supervisors review it for completeness and accuracy. The validation process can include a variety of criteria, but some of the most useful are the criticality of the task, the frequency that the task is performed. and need for training this task. The specific tasks that should be included in a training curriculum are one of the outcomes of the validation.

To provide useful information for curriculum development or any other uses of DACUM profiles, the validations should be targeted to the intended use of the DACUM profiles. For example, if a profile is to be the foundation for a jail assistant administrator training curriculum, the reviewers should be selected from the jail system or systems that will actually use the completed program. The next step after validation is task analysis. Through task analysis, ideally conducted jointly by expert workers and curriculum developers, each task is further analyzed and broken down into sequential operational steps. These steps describe exactly how to accomplish the task and should include the specific knowledge, skills, tools, and equipment needed to perform the task. The completed task analyses become the foundation or outline for developing the training curriculum.