Better Hiring, Less Firing

Interview iStock_000019777981_SmallHiring employees is one of the most crucial decisions an organization or business owner will make. Compensation certainly is a large expenditure, especially when an employee ends up not being the right candidate for the job. That’s why it’s important that before hiring, no matter how pressing the need, you take a step back and ask yourself: “Are my hiring practices hurting our bottom line?”

Competencies guiding the way

Consider this: People have unique and characteristic ways of dealing with life situations – work and personal. This fact gives to a preferred way of operating where certain abilities become competent in their everyday lives. These abilities and competencies are quite significant in determining individual job success.

With the use of a competency-based interview guide that is focused on specific behavioral questions, you can truly gain a sense of a prospective employee’s personality, as well as whether or not they are the right hire for the job.

There are many factors to consider when hiring employees, including:

  • The fit with your company’s culture
  • The level of enthusiasm about your vision
  • The attitude and willingness to learn new things
  • The career goals of the individual (do they want this job or are they looking for a transition?)

These traits are, of course, not all that matters, and that’s why it’s crucial to have a competency model for each position; to ensure that your hiring process is cost effective and adapted to each role.

The foundation for performance

When used during the HR selection process, competencies have also proven effective in identifying certain behaviors required for a job that would affect the welfare of other individuals or groups within an organization. These behavioral repertoires, such as motive and personality traits, offer a better means of predicting occupational success.

Employees are both a challenging and expensive investment, but hiring the right employees the first time can make all the difference.

To learn more about how you can build a solid competency-based system for employee assessment and selection, please visit our website.

Also, for a more in-depth discussion on the cost of a wrong hire, check out our blog archive: The Cost of a Wrong Hire: Competencies to the Rescue.

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Talent Management: The Strategic Connection

Standing_b&wcolor_646x220_v2There is one key element that defines the effectiveness of implementing competencies into a talent management system, and that is a strategic connection between business objectives and said competencies. Essentially: careful planning and shrewd strategizing.

To achieve this, ask yourself these questions:

  1. Do my HR functions share a common language?
  2. Are they organized to reinforce and compliment each other?
  3. Are presently established selection and training programs producing average or superior performers?

If you answered “no” to any of these questions, it may be time to rethink your organization’s talent management approach.

Achieving the right competency levels

Careful planning begins with determining the area(s) in which the organization has to be competent so as to better differentiate itself from the competition.

Then, you must assess the fields in which your employees need to be proficient – and efficient – if they are to support your organizational success. Those “achievements” that you seek in their profiles are where the competency levels are built and implemented.

The benefits of effective competencies within a talent management system are not only “nice-to-haves,” they are critical to your success. They include:

  • Empowerment of your managers via an HR system that actively supports company goals
  • Increased motivation of employees who are committed to corporate effectiveness as a means of self-improvement and individual success
  • A process of corporate change that draws more willing participation from employees
  • Enhanced competitiveness and resilience in the marketplace, made possible by smoother internal transitions

Real value means real talent

Again, implementing competencies should always focus on making a strategic connection between those competencies and the objectives of your organization. Without this, competency-based applications cannot hope to influence business results, or truly add real value to an organization.

You can learn more about the process of building a viable talent management system at this webpage.

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The Trainer’s Role in Developing Competencies

Competency modeling provides a truly ideal framework for your training programs.  Studies show that competency-based training offers a return on investment (ROI) nearly ten times higher than the ROI of traditional training methods. Workitect has developed a process entitled the Competency Acquisition Process (CAP) for managing training efforts through increasing levels of competencies. The CAP consists of seven steps, outlined below.

LEARNING MODEL GRAPHIC [Converted]

Seven step to improving an individual’s performance.

Identification of Required Competencies:  Job Competency Models supply this information, or a simpler, less detailed system can be used for non-critical jobs.

Assessment:  Employees assess their current competencies and compare them to examples of superior performance.  Performance assessments by managers are obvious tools as well.  Employees and managers then decide which skills to focus on.

Observation and Study:  Employees study examples or models of superior performance.  Trainers provide supporting information to aid participants’ comprehension.

Practice: After acquiring a basic understanding of the concepts involved, participants move to practical, job-related applications of their new knowledge.

Feedback:  Trainers observe participants applying their new knowledge and offer constructive feedback and reinforcement.

Goal-Setting:  Trainers work with employees to set specific goals and action plans for applying new competencies back on the job.

On-the-Job-Support:  Supervisor and peers reinforce and support each individual’s demonstration of newly acquired skills.

When your employees enter this cyclical process of planning their own development and acquiring necessary training, everyone benefits. They take responsibility for their own career paths, their own job security, and you gain an ever more skilled and competent workforce. Improved performance, bonuses, increased productivity, and career advancement spell success for everyone.

Workitect’s Competency Development Guide includes details on how you can use this process to develop thirty-five competencies.

To learn more about how you can implement the CAP process within your organization, please contact us via e-mail or phone.

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