Conducting Job Analysis Interviews

six steps horizontal 3Step 3 – DATA COLLECTION

Job Analysis Interviews are usually conducted with capable job incumbents, but they can also be conducted with managers of job incumbents. The interview starts with a question about the four or five most important main responsibilities in the job. When these have been identified, the interviewer asks focuses on each main responsibility and asks about: (a) key tasks for this responsibility, (b) skills and knowledge required to perform the tasks for this main responsibility, and (c) performance criteria or measures used to assess performance in the job. The interviewee may also be asked to review a list of generic competencies and their definitions and select the 10 most important competencies for the job.

Job analysis interviews are essential if the competency model will be presented as part of a broader job model that includes a breakdown of the main responsibilities and their related tasks. Job analysis interviews are also needed if the competency model will be used to develop training courses or programs for job incumbents. If you plan to facilitate a Resource Panel or conduct Structured Event Interviews, it is useful to have conducted at least a couple of Job Analysis Interviews, so that you have a concrete understanding of job. A final benefit of Job Analysis Interviews is that they provide most of the information needed to prepare a job description.

Implementing Job Analysis Interviews

Plan to conduct three or four of these interviews, allowing about one hour per interview. The interviewees should be capable performers, but they do need to be superior performers. Begin the interview by explaining the purposes and scope of project and the format of the interview. Then the use or adapt the Job Analysis Interview protocol provided in this workbook. Ask follow-up questions when this is necessary to clarify the interviewee’s responses. Take detailed notes on each interview but also tape record the interviews so that you will be able to listen to the tapes to clarify your notes later, if necessary.

Analyzing Job Analysis Interviews

Interviewees will vary in the way they describe main responsibilities, tasks and skills. One way to analyze these interviews is to use the outline of the interview protocol to prepare a composite set responses that reflect common themes across interviewees. To identify competencies based on these interviews, you can (a) look to see which of the generic competencies were selected by two or more of the interviewees, and (b) draw logical inferences about which generic competencies are required, based on the tasks and skills needed to perform each main responsibility. For example, if people management is a main responsibility, it is likely that the competency model will need to include one or more of the generic competencies related to people management, such as Performance Management, Empowering Others, and Developing Others.

Conducting job analysis interviews is taught in Workitect’s Building Competency Models workshop.

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Identifying a Set of Generic Competencies

Why should you use a dictionary of generic competencies when you can develop your own dictionary?

Because so much competency modeling has been done over the past 40 years, it is not necessary to develop a new competency model from scratch. Consultants and researchers who have done extensive competency modeling work have prepared dictionaries of generic, or frequently occurring non-technical competencies. Each competency in the dictionary usually contains a definition and a set of conceptually related behavioral indictors.  For example, the staff of Workitect has developed several developmental resource guides that include generic competencies. Selecting or adapting a set of generic competencies streamlines the process of competency modeling.

To identify a set of generic competencies for a particular project, the project leader selects relevant competencies from a generic competency dictionary and reviews these with the project sponsor and other appropriate staff. The goal is to identify a set of competencies that will encompass all personal characteristics and skills relevant to the jobs under consideration and all other jobs for which will competency models may be built. Sometimes it is desirable to adapt the names of the competencies and the language used in the definitions and behavioral indicators to reflect language and concepts used in the organization.

If it is important to identify technical competencies, you can consult one or more subject matter experts within the organization to help identify and draft a set of technical competencies for use in the competency-modeling project. The technical competencies should also be reviewed and revised with the project sponsor and other appropriate staff.

Identifying a set of generic competencies is especially important when the Multiple Jobs Approach is being used. The generic competencies are common building blocks used to construct each competency model. These generic competencies ensure use of a consistent conceptual framework across jobs.

The generic competencies are also useful when using the Single Job Approach and the One Size Fits All Approach. For example, if a resource panel is used as one of the data gathering methods, the panel members may be asked to rate the importance of each of the generic competencies to the job under consideration.

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Collecting Data to Build Competency Models

Introduction

The project plan that is completed in Step 2 (Project Planning) will have included one or more methods of data collection that are appropriate for the project. This blog presents different data collection methods used in building competency models, along with suggestions for implementing each method.

Step 3, Data Collection, includes several general tasks common to most data collection methods.

  1. Developing key communication points about the project, to be shared with persons from whom data will be collected
  2. Identifying a set of generic competencies from which competencies will be selected or adapted
  3. For each data collection method, developing a protocol with standard questions and procedures for recording responses
  4. Training or preparing data collection staff
  5. Selecting participants for each data collection method
  6. Communicating with participants to invite their participation
  7. Scheduling data collection activities
  8. Implementing the data collection method (e.g., holding interviews, resource panel)

General Data Collection Tasks

1. Developing Key Communication Points

In order to get the support of people from whom you are gathering data, you need to be able to explain what you are doing and why. For this purpose it is useful to outline some communication points that you can use in emails, presentations, and conversations with the participants and other project stakeholders. The communication points should include:

  • A description of what you are developing (the competency model and the initial application of the model
  • The name(s) of the project sponsor(s)
  • How the competency model and application will be used in the organization
  • How this will benefit the organization
  • Main project steps and timeline
  • How people were selected to participate
  • What the participation involves for each data collection method
  • Assurances of anonymity and/or confidentiality where applicable

You can draw on these communication points to develop specific communications as needed.

2. Identifying a Set of Generic Competencies

Because so much competency modeling has been done over the past 30 years, it is not necessary to develop a new competency model from scratch. Consultants and researchers who have done extensive competency modeling work have prepared dictionaries of generic, or frequently occurring non-technical competencies. Each competency in the dictionary usually contains a definition and a set of conceptually related behavioral indictors.  For example, the staff of Workitect has developed several developmental resource guides that include generic competencies. Selecting or adapting a set of generic competencies streamlines the process of competency modeling.

To identify a set of generic competencies for a particular project, the project leader selects relevant competencies from a generic competency dictionary and reviews these with the project sponsor and other appropriate staff. The goal is to identify a set of competencies that will encompass all personal characteristics and skills relevant to the jobs under consideration and all other jobs for which will competency models may be built. Sometimes it is desirable to adapt the names of the competencies and the language used in the definitions and behavioral indicators to reflect language and concepts used in the organization.

If it is important to identify technical competencies, you can consult one or more subject matter experts within the organization to help identify and draft a set of technical competencies for use in the competency modeling project. The technical competencies should also be reviewed and revised with the project sponsor and other appropriate staff.

Identifying a set of generic competencies is especially important when the Multiple Jobs Approach is being used. The generic competencies are common building blocks used to construct each competency model. These generic competencies ensure use of a consistent conceptual framework across jobs.

The generic competencies are also useful when using the Single Job Approach and the One Size Fits All Approach. For example, if a resource panel is used as one of the data gathering methods, the panel members may be asked to rate the importance of each of the generic competencies to the job under consideration.

3. Developing a Protocol for Each Data Collection Method

A protocol is a document developed to guide the data collection process. It always includes questions for participants. It may also include instructions for the interviewer or facilitator about points to explain and procedures to use to collect and record data. The purposes of the protocol are to (a) ensure consistent communication about the project, (b) maximize the chances of full, honest participation from participants, (c) ensure that all planned questions are asked (d) ensure consistency when the data gathering method will be used with more than one person or group, and (e) ensure consistency of capturing or recording data by the interviewers or facilitators. Interview guides, resource panel outlines, and survey forms are all examples of data gathering protocols.

4. Training or Preparing Data Collection Staff

If two or more persons will be conducting interviews or facilitating resource panels, it is important that these persons use a consistent process. Most of the methods we will discuss do not require special training for staff who have had experience interviewing and facilitating groups. But it is important to hold a meeting of the interviewers or facilitators and to walk through the planned process and ensure that everyone is clear about the procedures for asking questions and for capturing participants’ responses.

5. Selecting Participants for Each Data Collection Method

The first thing to consider in selecting participants is who will provide the most useful data. Also important is the breadth and credibility of the participant sample taken as a whole. If the job has incumbents in several regions or business units, you should try to select participants from all of these regions or business units.  In addition, ensuring diversity among the incumbents selected is important.

6. Communicating with Participants to Invite Their Participation

Before communicating directly with participants, it is important to communicate first with their management. You may need to prepare a draft communication for the project sponsor to send out for this purpose.

Use the communication points described under Task 1 to prepare appropriate communications for the participants. Most likely, you will use an email for this purpose, but you may also need to prepare and deliver one or more brief presentations about the project.

7. Scheduling Data Collection Activities

This is a necessary step that requires little explanation. If you are conducting interviews, you should allow at least 15 minutes between interviews and, if possible, hold them all in a room booked for that purpose.

8. Implementing the Data Collection Method

This process is taught in Workitect’s Building Competency Models workshop.

Specific implementation procedures will be discussed in subsequent blogs on each data collection method.

Q – Which step is the most difficult one to carry out?

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The One-Size-Fits-All Competency Model

SINGLE JOB MODEL > ONE-SIZE-FITS-ALL MODEL > MULTIPLE JOBS MODELS

1. ModelBuildingGroup_298x224In the One-Size-Fits-All Approach, a competency model is developed for a broadly defined set of jobs that may have very different responsibilities and knowledge requirements. Most often, the competency model is developed for one level of jobs, such as managers, associates, or senior leaders.

The competency model often includes competencies selected for alignment with the company’s values and strategic direction. Thus competencies may have names like “Respecting All People” or “Bias for Action.”

The competencies are often described in general terms that are not job specific, since the competency model covers a broad range of jobs which may have significantly different responsibilities.

When the One-Size-Fits-All Approach is Appropriate

  • When line management or HR wants to promote alignment with vision, values and strategy
  • When key stakeholders prefer simple solutions and have a low tolerance for complexity
  • When HR wants to implement something quickly that will have broad impact
  • When the budget for developing competency models is limited

Advantages of the One-Size-Fits-All Approach

The One-Size-Fits-All Approach sends a clear and simple message about what the personal characteristics and skills that the organization considers to be important. A competency model built with this approach is broadly applicable to a large number of employees, as are applications based on the model. For example, a competency assessment tool based on the model can be used with all of the employees in the job. Finally, the use of this approach promotes a common language and conceptual framework to use in describing key skills.

Disadvantages of the One-Size-Fits-All Approach

Because the model is used with a wide range of jobs, employees may not feel that it applies well to their particular job. If many of the competencies were selected to describe what the leaders would like people to demonstrate, rather than what superior performers actually do, people may perceive the model to be more espoused than true. The One-Size-Fits-All Approach is not as useful as other approaches in guiding selection, since selection of candidates for a specific job may require consideration of job-specific skills, knowledge and experience that are not included in the One-Size-Fits-All competency model.

Data Collection in the One-Size-Fits-All Approach

When using this approach, it is less important to identify responsibilities and tasks. Since the model will cover a broad range of jobs, the only responsibilities that are important are ones that apply to all of the jobs. Since the competency model will usually reflect the organization’s mission, values and strategic direction, it is important to talk to senior HR leaders and senior line leaders if possible, to ensure that the mission, values and strategic direction are understood and carefully considered. For the competency model to have credibility, it is highly desirable to conduct interviews with several superior performers. These interviews should focus on obtaining specific behavioral accounts of what these persons did during key job situations such as accomplishments or performance of important and challenging tasks.

LEARN MORE

Example of One-Size-Fits-All models:  Executives
About competencies and competency models.

Taught in Building Competency Models workshop.                                                        Next workshop to be conducted on October 4-6 in Washington, DC.

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The Single Job Competency Model

six steps horizontal 3When deciding how to approach a competency model-building project, it is useful to consider three distinctive approaches:

  • Single Job Competency Model
  • One-Size-Fits-All Approach
  • Multiple Job Approach

A project usually focuses on one of these approaches, although it is possible to use a combination of these approaches within one organization. The first of the three approaches are described below.

Single Job Competency Model

This approach focuses on a single, narrowly defined job that is important to the organization’s success and has at least 10 job holders. The jobs covered by the competency model should have similar responsibilities and performance measures. Any requirements for technical skill or knowledge should be similar across the set of jobs. Examples of jobs for which a single job competency model is appropriate include sales representative, customer service representative, project manager, and plant manager.

The single job approach uses extensive and rigorous data collection, to ensure that the competency model contains highly specific behavioral descriptions of what one needs to do and how, in order to achieve superior results. This approach often includes a detailed breakdown of the main responsibilities and tasks and shows how they are linked to the competencies. Compared to the other two approaches, the single job approach is more time consuming and expensive to implement.

Data Gathering for the Single Job Approach

Usually, in the single job approach, data are gathered in multiple ways. For example, job analysis interviews may be used with job holders to identify main responsibilities, break each main responsibility down into tasks and sub-tasks. A resource panel, comprised of several job holders and several managers of jobholders, may be used to gather the same type of information, as well as information about performance criteria and measures and about changes in the business and organizational context that have implications for new and emerging competency requirements. In order to develop highly detailed behavioral descriptions of the competencies, the Single Job Approach almost always includes structured behavioral interviews with superior performers in the job, in which these persons are asked to provide detailed accounts of how they approached several key tasks or work situations.

Advantages of the Single Job Approach

A competency model built using the Single Job Approach has high face validity and high credibility with job holders and their managers. The model provides a recipe for superior performance. The specific behavioral descriptions of the competencies are useful when developing training programs. The rigor of the methodology ensures that if the organization wishes to use the model for selection, there will be a strong legal justification for doing so.

Disadvantages of the Single Job Approach

Because this approach targets a single, narrowly defined job, the competency model and HR applications built on it affect a relatively small number of employees. As noted earlier, the Single Job Approach is relatively expensive and time consuming to implement, especially if competency models are desired for multiple jobs.

When the Single Job Approach is Appropriate

This approach is most appropriate when:

  • There is an opportunity to gain competitive advantage by improving the productivity of people in a key job
  • The potential productivity gains from applying the model justify the time and expense of building it
  • There is a need to use the competency model as a basis for developing a training program or curriculum
  • The organization currently has several superior performers in the job
  • The job is expected to continue to exist in the organization for at least three years. 

EXAMPLES: These are single job competency models (in several different formats) that were created by Workitect consultants.

  • Project Manager in a high technology company
  • Account Representative in a distribution company
  • Call Center Manager in a telecommunications companyMarketing Representative in an insurance company

 

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Conceptualizing a Model Building Project

six steps horizontal 3Conceptualizing the Project is the first step in Workitect’s competency modeling process, and is taught in our Building Competency Models certification workshop.

What This Step Involves

The key components of conceptualizing the approach are:

  •   Thinking through the need
  •   Clarifying the need through discussions with the sponsor and other key stakeholders
  •   Developing an approach
  •   Gaining the sponsor’s support for the approach

A. Thinking through the Need.    In thinking through the need, it is helpful to consider the following questions:

  •   What is the business need for the competency model(s)?
  •   What HR applications will be built using the competency model(s) to address the business need?
  •   What is the organizational context?
  •   What business or organizational changes have occurred?
  •   What other competency models exist or are planned?
  •   Has the organization developed a mission or values statement?
  •   What is the organization’s strategic plan or direction?
  •   What aspects of the organization’s culture should be taken into account when considering this work?
  •   What HR applications and programs are already in place for selection, professional development, assessment, and performance management?
  •   Who will sponsor this work? What are the sponsor’s needs and concerns?
  •   What other key stakeholders will be affected by the competency model and its applications? What are their needs and concerns?

B. Clarifying the Need.   You probably will not have answers to all of the above questions and it is likely that the sponsor and other key stakeholders will have perspectives and concerns that you have not thought of. By talking with your sponsor and with some other key stakeholders, you can clarify what is needed. In addition, sounding out key stakeholders and demonstrating interest in their needs, you will begin to build support for the project.

C. Developing an Approach    There are three main approaches to competency model building. When deciding how to approach a competency model-building project, it is useful to consider these three distinctive approaches:

  •    Single Job Competency Model
  •   One-Size-Fits-All Approach
  •   Multiple Job Approach

A project usually focuses on one of these approaches, although it is possible to use a combination of these approaches within one organization. The approaches will be described in detail in the next three issues of this series.

D. Gaining the Sponsor’s Support for the Approach     Before you can begin a competency-modeling project, you need to have your sponsor’s support, first for the general conceptual approach and later for a project plan that specifies the time, money and other resources that will be required. Before developing a detailed plan, it is useful to ensure that the sponsor supports your general conceptual approach. Therefore, you need to share your approach with the sponsor and check to see if you have your sponsor’s support. You can do this in an in-person or telephone meeting.

Question for readers: What challenges have you had in following these steps? Are there steps that should be added?

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Key Concepts of Career Development

Career GoldWhether functioning as a supervisor, coach or employee, a review of several concepts relating to career development helps pave the way to new levels of understanding, insight and growth – and the development of competencies needed for success in an organization.

1. Not Just For Promotion — It is important to recognize that employee development is not limited to upward mobility. Becoming more knowledgeable, proficient and professional in the performance of current responsibilities can represent career development just as much as moving to a different assignment. Also, there is potential for increasing the responsibilities in a position as the employee grows into them.

2. Personal Responsibility For Growth — The employee must assume responsibility for career planning and personal development. The company cannot help to develop an employee who does not wish to develop. Consequently, it is important that the employee know him or herself. He/she must define personal goals, determine whether these goals are attainable, take time to evaluate the skills and knowledge needed to achieve these goals and set priorities for starting on the chosen path. Only the employee can answer the crucial questions of “Where do I want to go?” and “How much of myself am I willing to invest in order to get there?”

3. Interdependent Roles — There is a dual effort in this process. While it is the individual’s responsibility to achieve the level of success desired, the organization has a responsibility to provide the necessary coaching, counseling, personnel structures, and other support to the individual, so that he/she can make progress toward his/her goals.

4. Honesty — Both the organization and the employee must be honest with themselves. The employee must realistically assess his/her abilities, skills, knowledge, and potential as well as the level of his/her personal commitment to the chosen career path. At the same time, the company must be honest with the employee as to whether career objectives are feasible or probable in terms of future organizational needs. The manager needs to make it very clear that the company cannot make any promises to the employee. All the company can guarantee is that it will do its best to provide resources that will facilitate employee growth that is in keeping with the attainment of corporate objectives.

Source: Competency Development Guide, page 19

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The Evolution of Competency Modeling

The first ten years of competency modeling were dominated by consultants trained in the McBer approach. This approach involved a rigorous research methodology, which included identification of criterion samples of superior and average performers, behavioral event interviews, thematic analysis of transcripts of half the interview sample, and cross validation through coding and statistical analysis of the other half of the interviews. During this period, competency models were most often used to guide selection and professional development. Workitect uses the same methodology to develop job competency models.

Today, 40 years after the first competency model, more than half of the Fortune 500 companies are using competency modeling. Consultants working in the McBer tradition are still building many models, but these consultants have been joined by many other consultants using different methodologies. With market pressures to build models more quickly and less expensively, there is less emphasis on methodological rigor.

Over the last two decades, organizations have begun to use competency models in new ways. Many organizations that have redesigned their work processes and restructured their jobs have developed competency models for newly designed jobs for which there are few, if any, job incumbents with experience. These new competency models, of necessity, describe emerging and anticipated skill requirements, rather than skills that have been effective in the past. Many organizations have taken a “one size fits all” approach to competency modeling, by developing one competency model, usually for leaders, and applying this model to a large set of jobs, sometimes even non-managerial ones. Other organizations have moved in the opposite direction, by simultaneously developing multiple competency models for different jobs within an organization.

Competency models are still most often used to support selection and professional development, but developmental assessment – “360 feedback,” competency assessment by self, manager, peers, direct reports, and customers – has become a significant human resources application in its own right.

In the past twenty years, there have also been changes in the workplace which affect competency model building. Because organizations are changing more rapidly, the “shelf life” of a competency model has diminished. Frequent reorganizations change job roles and make existing job descriptions and competency models obsolete. Competency models are often needed for new and critical jobs, even though there are few employees with experience in these jobs and fewer still who could be considered outstanding performers.

Staff functions, such as human resources, have become leaner, so that the remaining staff have more responsibilities and job pressures and less time for discretionary, additional activities such as investing time in competency model building. Thus, more of the model building work falls to external consultants. At the same time, human resources staff are under more pressure to produce results quickly, and this means implementing a useful human resources application, not simply developing a competency model. The budget for the development of a new competency model must therefore compete with the budget for its applications.

Organizational changes have also affected employees, who are the “end users” of competency models. The increased intensity and pace of work make it more difficult to get employees to participate in model building activities, especially resource panels and focus groups. Perhaps because of the pace of work, employees’ attention span, their tolerance for complexity, and their willingness to read have diminished. As a result, competency models need to be leaner and simpler, with high-impact language that holds the reader’s attention.

What has impacted the way you do models today? How are you doing them now?

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The First Competency Model

Competency modeling, an approach originated 40 years ago, has become a mainstream practice in human resource management. Over that period, the methodology has evolved, partly in response to changes in organizations and the workplace, and partly in response to the needs of people using the competency models to address specific needs in organizations. Many of the original creative insights from the development of the first competency model are still relevant today.

The First Competency Model

The first competency model was developed in the early 1970’s by the eminent psychologist and Harvard professor Dr. David McClelland and consultants from McBer and Company*. He is best known for his work in the field of motivation and especially his theory of people’s “need for achievement.” Rejecting IQs and personality tests as valuable measures of a person’s potential success at a task or career, he developed innovative ways of measuring psychological characteristics. McClelland recognized competence and motivation to achieve as the characteristics best able to predict success on tasks. The U.S. Department of State was concerned about the selection of junior Foreign Service Information Officers, young diplomats who represent the United States in various countries. The traditional selection criteria, tests of academic aptitude and knowledge, did not predict effectiveness as a foreign service officer and were screening out too many minority candidates.

imagesWhen asked to develop alternative methods of selection, McClelland and his colleagues decided that they needed to find out what characteristics differentiated outstanding performance in the position. They first identified contrasting samples of outstanding performers and average performers, by using nominations and ratings from bosses, peers, and clients. Next, the research team developed a method called the Behavioral Event Interview, in which interviewees were asked to provide detailed accounts, in short story form, of how they approached several critical work situations, both successful and unsuccessful. The interviewer used a non-leading probing strategy to find out what the interviewee did, said, and thought at key points within each situation. To analyze the data from the interviews, the researchers developed a sophisticated method of content analysis, to identify themes differentiating the outstanding performers from the average performers. The themes were organized into a small set of “competencies,” which the researchers hypothesized were the determinants of superior performance in the job. The competencies included non-obvious ones such as “Speed in Learning Political Networks”; the outstanding officers were able to quickly figure out who could influence key people and what each person’s political interests were.

The Evolution of Competency Modeling – The Methodology

From this initial study, the McBer team developed a methodology that dominated the practice of competency model building for the next 10-15 years. Key insights from the initial study are still highly useful in competency model building today: the focus on outstanding performers, use of behavioral event interviews, and thematic analysis of interview data, and distillation of the results into a small set of competencies described in behaviorally specific terms.

The method differed from traditional job analysis in several ways. Job analysis focused on understanding tasks and the skills needed to perform each task; competency modeling, however, focused on personal characteristics needed for success in a broader job role. And while job analysis focused on effective performance, competency modeling focused on outstanding performance. Practitioners of job analysis attached credibility to the views of job holders and other subject matter experts about what is important for effectiveness. Competency modelers believed that only outstanding performers could provide insights about what is important, but that even outstanding performers could not always articulate the secrets of their success. Finally, while job analysis often led to long lists of tasks and their associated skill requirements, competency modelers distilled the results of their studies into a relatively small set of underlying personal characteristics.

It is interesting to speculate about why competency modeling took hold and became widespread. The interest value of competency models may be one reason. Personal characteristics are more interesting than tasks, and insights about outstanding performance are more interesting than those about effective performance. Another reason for the success of competency models is that they work well as unifying frameworks for a variety of applications in human resource management. A manageable set of personal characteristics can serve as a conceptual framework for selection, assessment, professional development, performance management, and other human resource programs. Finally, competency models work well as vehicles for driving organizational change. The Workitect Competency Dictionary includes the competency of “Managing Change”.

*McClelland provides a description of the study in his introduction to Competence at Work, by Lyle M. Spencer, Jr. and Signe M. Spencer. New York: Wiley, 1993.

The Workitect methodology for model building is based on the McBer methodology.

This material is included in Workitect’s Building Competency Models workshop.  

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in October, 2012 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Next blog – The Evolution of Competency Modeling – Today and Future

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Communicating with People Involved in a Modeling Project

In our previous blog, we listed points that should be covered with all employees when launching a job competency modeling project.

In addition to receiving the same communications provided to all employees, the people involved in various aspects of the project should receive clear and complete information about their specific role.           

When informing people who will be on a resource panel or will be interviewed:

  • The communications can be from senior sponsor or a senior person on project team.
  • Reiterate purpose for the project.
  • Explain why they were selected.
  • Explain how they are to participate, either on the panel or in an interview.
  • Attach key questions they will be asked (for them to consider before their session).
  • Stress that their individual comments will be held confidential; only a summary of all      comments will be published.
  • Inform them of the person they can contact with questions.

When distributing the model or application:

  • Communications should be from senior sponsor.
  • Summarize the history of the project to this point.
  • List the people who participated in creating the model/application.
  • Explain the implementation plan and timeline.
  • Inform them of the person they can contact with questions.

In summary, do not underestimate the importance of this step.  A competency-based human resource system, implemented properly, should have a very positive impact on employees’ job satisfaction.  It makes it more likely that people will be assessed fairly and accurately, and be afforded opportunities based on objective criteria (a picture of what superior performers really do that makes them superior performers).  Poor communications of a model-building project leads to a diminishing of this positive effect and can actually lead to a negative result.

Are there any other important points that need to b e covered?

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