Why use frameworks within Medium Businesses?

As SMEs grow, they often find it harder to ensure that jobs are carried out and roles managed in an effective and consistent way. Processes on which the organisation relies can also be hard to manage when job holders are dispersed. Implementing a competency framework is one approach to standardising and ensuring consistency.

Challenge

Many industries and professions have competency frameworks which can provide a basis for designing a competency framework for a business or organisation. The automotive industry is an example of this. Motor dealers are at the end of a business structure which starts with the manufacturer. Many manufacturers have a set of competencies which they expect employees in their franchised dealerships to achieve. These are used to assess existing and potential employees for recruitment and promotion. The dealerships are often part of a group which might own a number of franchises. This results in different manufacturers Competency Frameworks being applied across the group. The group may also have its own Competency Framework which applies across all of its businesses. This framework would be used for performance reviews, internal promotions and recruitment. In an effort to simplify the process The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) developed a framework which covers three levels and the main job roles. The intention is for manufacturers and dealer groups to incorporate the IMI competencies into their own Competency Frameworks.

Although this scenario has some complexity it is not unusual as it could apply to many industries and roles such as: IT, healthcare, education, transport, construction and many others. So how do we integrate competencies into an effective framework for the organisation and its stakeholders?

Solution

Taking our consultation model (advice and guidance)we complete the analysis and map the discrete competencies to the job roles and take into account any existing Competency Frameworks which apply to the role. Our approach is to design a framework which identifies the common competencies and provide descriptions of behaviour, skill and knowledge.

Results

The outcome of this process for the client is a Competency Framework which, although it will not be a specific match to the other frameworks, is aimed at delivering the results required. The priority is for the stakeholders and job holders to recognise the similarities and understand the differences. Equally the differences should not be so great that the industry or professional stakeholders do not consider the competencies to be irrelevant or non-transferrable. So in the case of a manager in a car dealership applying for a position with a different franchise he should still be able to demonstrate competence at the level required by his prospective employer, even though their description may differ.

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