Can the use of competencies really save us time and money in managing our human resources?
Absolutely. Remember that one bad hire will cost you thousands of dollars for the time you spend hiring and training that person, only to have to start the whole process over in a few months.
I manage a supervisor who seems to have a lot of conflict with his staff. Can a FocusTM assessment help resolve that?
Conflict between a supervisor and one direct report is often about unresolved performance issues. And performance is usually less about what the person is doing technically, and more about how he’s doing it. A Performance FocusTM assessment completed by the direct report and the supervisor can give them valuable insight into how each perceives the employee’s performance. The Performance Focus™ report will give the supervisor specific language and examples to conduct a more objective performance discussion and resolve the conflict.
If the conflict is with more than one team member OR you suspect it could be bias on the supervisor’s part, then you need a fuller perspective. A 360 FocusTM assessment conducted with the supervisor as the subject will give you and the supervisor a more complete picture of his or her leadership approach. The 360 FocusTM report can then offer specific insight into how you can coach and facilitate the supervisor’s leadership development.
We’re a not-for-profit. Do we really need to use competency-based HR management systems?
Vision and values are crucial to every organization, but they cannot mask the fact that there’s still a business to run. The most successful not-for-profits are run like any other successful business—with a solid business plan and a professional, respectful management style.
Competency-based approaches are fairer, more transparent, and more defensible than traditional KSA (Knowledge, Skills and Attributes) approaches because everyone knows what the standards and expectations are. They facilitate whatever organizational culture and management style you wish to promote because what gets measured gets done.
How do we know when the time is right to invest in competency-based HR management systems, and where should we start?
It depends. Ideally, if you’re starting your business, making a major change, or expanding, then it’s best to incorporate this approach from the outset or as part of the change. While it may feel like a lot to deal with at once, it’s much easier for staff to accept changes in HR processes as part of an operational change than it is to try to implement the changes separately. In fact, operational changes often naturally require a change in your HR systems and processes.
If you’re not in operational transition, then we recommend that you begin introducing competency assessments into one system at a time. Internal recruitment can be a good place to start. It allows your management team to slowly become familiar with competencies and a competency-based approach. The staff it affects will be those who are motivated to do what it takes to get that promotion.
Another good time and place to start is when you wish to introduce cultural change, such as promoting a team environment or transitioning to a client-oriented culture. Desired behaviours can be defined in competencies, and staff can be assessed periodically to monitor progress and identify specific areas that need to be addressed. The 360 Team FocusTM will help identify organizational trends and concerns by teams, departments or across the organization.