© 2016 American Physical Society. The joint analysis of galaxy-galaxy lensing and galaxy clustering is a promising method for inferring the growth function of large-scale structure. Anticipating a near future application of this analysis to Dark Energy Survey (DES) measurements of galaxy positions and shapes, we develop a practical approach to modeling the assumptions and systematic effects affecting the joint analysis of small-scale galaxy-galaxy lensing and large-scale galaxy clustering. Introducing parameters that characterize the halo occupation distribution (HOD), photometric redshift uncertainties, and shear measurement errors, we study how external priors on different subsets of these parameters affect our growth constraints. Degeneracies within the HOD model, as well as between the HOD and the growth function, are identified as the dominant source of complication, with other systematic effects being subdominant. The impact of HOD parameters and their degeneracies necessitate the detailed joint modeling of the galaxy sample that we employ. We conclude that DES data will provide powerful constraints on the evolution of structure growth in the Universe, conservatively/optimistically constraining the growth function to 7.9%/4.8% with its first-year data that cover over 1000 square degrees, and to 3.9%/2.3% with its full five-year data that will survey 5000 square degrees, including both statistical and systematic uncertainties.