As mentioned in our previous post, having competent people is key in maintaining high-quality products and services. Obviously, having employees properly trained has a huge positive impact on the safety within the company as well, and therefore, it is critical in QHSE management. There are several steps required within competency management.
Step 1. Define the Competence
To start, it is important to define the competencies required. What are the comptences employees need to do fulfill their role successfully? This question is obviously key and it is important to look thoroughly at what a person has to do within their role. Is it vital to know all the technical details of the product or services or is communication more important? Maybe being creative is key, or does the person needs to be very good with numbers? All these skills need to be defined.
Step 2. A Framework of Proof
When the requirements are defined, there needs to be some kind of framework that can prove a certain person has the skill. Within our way of thinking, formal education comes first to mind. However, this doesn’t have to be the main type of evidence. There can be all kinds of internal training sessions or experiences that can be used as a reference. Regardless of what you choose as proof, it needs to be clear that the employee has the knowledge to perform the job.
Step 3. Finding the Gap in Competences
When the framework has been defined, we can map the competencies of the different people to their current status and make a training plan for them. This gives a great guide to find the right competencies people need to develop. With this in our hands, it becomes much easier to find training sessions for people to follow to improve their competencies.
Step 4. Check the Training
The power is in repetition, this is why certain training is required to do every year or at least some kind of interval. It is important that people are continuously trained on certain topics to keep this top of mind. Especially in the safety aspects of work, this repetition can be life-saving, such as with First Aid and Emergency Response. With this kind of training, having tech in place to set out reminders when people need to be trained is key. With this technology, it becomes very easy to have a clear overview of when certain employees need to be trained.
This all is obviously very theoretical and looked at from an ideal perspective. The real world is much fuzzier and not always easy to define. However, it is very important that the organization has some kind of similar system to measure and if required improve the competencies of the employees.