Quick SummaryDo you have a Role Description (RD) for your current job? Or are you still working from some out-dated Job Description (JD)? Do you know the difference? Is yours one of those companies who insists on talking about "benchmarking" but without really understanding how dangerous that can be, done incorrectly!
How Incompetent Are You?
While a JD may be better than nothing (although this is open to argument!) in attempting to understand what contribution anyone in your organisation is supposed to be making, it will often mask just how little a position is contributing to the current business situation. Very few jobs that are being filled today are the same as they were when the position first became available - even though the person in that job is the same one who settled in on that first day. And very few objectives contained within that JD will be the correct ones for the current role being undertaken.
The message is: move all of your JDs into RDs, and make sure that the role that is being carried out is the one that is being measured - and rewarded! If you already have RDs for all of the work you are doing, then you have a reasonable chance of designing and implementing the competency framework that will be the best for you. Just another point about "Benchmarking" - have you spoken about or attempted this recently? If so, who did you think of benchmarking against? Was it, perhaps, a major company in a similar line as your company? If it was, then you are surely on the slippery slope to getting it horribly wrong.
There is a fundamental question to be asked before you even begin to think of moving towards competency, competency frameworks and benchmarking. The question is, "What does a good job look like around here"? The secret to proper use of competencies is contained in the answer to that question, but so many people do not ever ask it. If you do not know what you are working towards, or how you wish to move towards it, or how you wish, as an organisation, to be viewed as you do move towards it, then you could be very easily mislead into employing or purchasing a totally unsuitable system.
I am not against Competency Frameworks - I run workshops on designing and recognising professional Competency Frameworks - but I am against them being badly used and then blamed when things do not turn out as expected. Nor am I against Performance Management, or Objectives or Standards, unless they are unilaterally imposed by a management that has no real clue as to where they are going or why this system is being used.
Applied properly, competencies and competency frameworks can make everyone's job easier, from the HR team doing new recruitment through to the individual carrying out the role and who wants to be fairly assessed for an actual contribution rather than against some notional, out of date document. It also assists the line manager in carrying out performance assessments in a fair and transparent manner, one of the key motivators for any team or group of employees.
Of course, if you prefer not to be open, honest and transparent in your dealings with people (see my article from last week's 7 Days City for further comment on this topic) then you might want to remain with your outdated JDs, and your opinion-based assessments. Just make sure that you do not ever volunteer to act as a benchmark for anyone else!
Your Comments (1)
Your thoughts matter to others - more than you can imagine.
More Articles published by Barry
3 Free | Ad-Free | Full-Text Business Papers
Customer Care, ServiceYou might be tempted to answer that "every customer matters!", but, if you did, you could be wasting a lot of your time and energy on customers that earn ... 50 | 4.56 K | 4 min
Human DevelopmentDo you want to win in the war for talent? Do you want a great culture that keeps people motivated and performing to their highest potential - but without ... 51 | 4.7 K | 4 min
EthicsIf I called you a liar or a cheat to your face, would you be angry? If I told you about someone who stole things from other people, would you condemn them? ... 50 | 4.51 K | 4 min
More 'Human Resources' Articles
9 more Articles that may interest you, too...
How organizations may train their raters to decrease biases, increase accuracy of evaluations, increase behavioral accuracy to improve observational skills, and finally, increase rater confidence.45.01 K | 177
By Allan M.
If managers can demonstrate the skills and are not afraid to trust their employees, then peer appraisal can work for both manager and the team, and work incredibly well. But make no mistake - it is very, very tough in the short term.4.31 K | 50
The most important thing to remember is to enjoy the job hunt! I know it sounds like a difficult thing to do but if you don't feel joy in the process, your new job will take a while to find you.6.27 K | 50
By Albert E.
Somewhere in Corporate America, a human resources manager is tweaking her company's employee-incentive program. Maybe she's dumping last year's customized giveaways for this year's weekend getaway packages. Perhaps she's jettisoning the annual casino-awards party in favor of discreet distribution of personalized thank-you cards. What drives her is the theory that rewards and bonuses motivate employees to do their jobs better.21.08 K | 60
By James A.
These are trying times. Companies are fighting each other over talented workers, budgets are being squeezed as the world economy struggles, and we've become a nation of stressed-out imbalanced employees.3.72 K | 50
By Carole S.
Pointers to successful Absence Management3.19 K | 50
By Sid R.
It's a tough and competitive business world. Everyone is faced with rising taxes, increasing insurance and energy costs which, in turn, are causing feelings of discomfort and uncertainty. And, for many organizations, finding (and keeping) great people is becoming a challenge...4.42 K | 50
Challenging the structures and values of traditional organizations, locating the right mix of power, information, rewards, and knowledge (also known as PIRK) at all levels, encouraging employee commitment to the success of the organization, and utilizing an employee-centered approach as opposed to a control-oriented approach to management51.18 K | 145