Competencies can be produced and learned by one or many individuals by adhering to a framework. Competencies must also be updated and made adaptable to hold relevance to those they were designed for. However, in order to get commitment from employees, there are guiding principles to be followed. These will be discussed in detail in this article.
Principle 1: Collaboration
Management creates policies for everyone to follow; they create plans and programs designed for all. But when it comes to designing a competency framework for the organization, the task should not only be limited to management, but also to those who will be affected by its implementation. This means that if a competency framework is to be made, there has to be at least one representative from each department or office to take part in the process. Why? This is because the framework is designed for these people, and what better way to make it usable than to get ideas from all those involved?
When collaborating with members in producing competencies, those who are actually going to use them would be able to share the ideas and points of view. When they take part in the designing process, it will be easier for them to accept the framework once it is ready for use.
While it is not necessary to involve all the members to take part in this process, it is recommended to request at least one member to join and represent their department or office. In a way, this person will serve as the “voice” for their group, helping to manage sensitivity issues and making it easier to gain acceptance from the group.
Principle 2: Communication
In every aspect of one’s life, communication always takes a very important role. Producing competencies is no exception. It is necessary to communicate to potential users what they need to know regarding the framework so that acceptance will not be difficult. As in most cases, for people to accept, they need to understand.
So the question is how to make them understand. There will be three questions that the employer or the facilitator needs to answer:
- What is a competency framework?
- Why is it being produced?
- How is it going to be used?
One must be ready to answer these questions because surely, users will ask them. And even if they do not, it is imperative that the answers should be communicated because resistance is possible when changes and new things are introduced in any organization. The users need to understand the value of the framework, and they should also know that this can help them in the same way that it can also help the organization.
Principle 3: Relevance
In producing competencies, there is nothing more frustrating than making a framework that is not relevant to the organization. Such an occurrence is possible especially if:
- The framework was simply adapted from another organization’s framework.
- The ideas and views of potential users were not heard during the designing process.
To avoid these from happening, it is always important to get key people to take part in the whole process. The framework needs to be applicable to the people it was designed for; it has to be updated to meet standards even with the changing times; and it has to be usable for everyone. If the framework is too complicated it runs the risk of confusing its users, preventing them from being able to follow and acquire the competencies needed.
Additionally, a competency framework can remain relevant to the needs of the organization by holding a test run. A survey may be given for all the users wherein their opinions can be heard, and if necessary, revisions should be made on the framework.
These three key principles will ultimately help an organization gain success in the implementation of a competency framework so that its members can produce the needed competencies. If these are adhered to, problems can be avoided, and cooperation and acceptance can be gained from the users. Without these, there is a likely possibility that members will refuse to follow the framework and as a result, no new competency will be produced.