4. Developing a Competency Assessment Plan

There are generally five phases in the development and implementation of a competency assessment plan, viz. plan, design, implement, assess/maintain and verify/audit. In the planning and design phase, the following steps could be followed.

  1. Identify the performance criteria that fit the current job/position in your country/organization. Add any specific ones if necessary based on local conditions.
  2. Determine the tools which will be used to assess each of the performance criteria identified in step i.
  3. Describe how the tools will be applied.
  4. Determine who will be the assessor, and who will moderate the assessor’s report.
  5. Plan a schedule for when the assessment will be conducted and how long will it take.
  6. Communicate this plan with management or government administration as appropriate.
  7. Identify any competencies which may require a new or different tool.
  8. Describe how records of results will be kept.

A competency assessment plan should contain the following information:

  • who the assesses are;
  • what unit(s) of competency will be assessed;
  • what tools will be used to assess;
  • when the assessment will take place;
  • over what period and how long it will be valid for;
  • any logistical considerations (such as rostering or relief of duties);
  • who the assessor(s) is/are;
  • what the communication strategies and tools are;
  • what the instructions for the assessment are;
  • what reasonable adjustments may be applied in special situations;
  • what the feedback and reporting mechanisms are;
  • what actions to be taken in the event of a "not yet competent" result; and
  • what the reassessment arrangement for a "not yet competent" personnel.
  • Recall that a competency requirement outlines the minimum skills, knowledge and behaviours personnel need to demonstrate to perform the job function. Once competency has been demonstrated, it needs to be maintained over time and, ideally, organizations should implement strategies to enhance performance once the minimum requirement is met. The process of maintaining and developing competency should be documented. For example, how often competency reassessment will occur, what assessment tools will be used, how they will vary from the initial assessment, how and when the organization will provide training to develop skills and knowledge and how this will be monitored.