The core competencies of an organization can help pinpoint the critical strengths and values that are shared by every individual within an organization.
Core competencies are measurable, on-the-job behaviors that an organization desires to implement within its workforce. These are critical behaviors required by every employee to help an organization achieve its mandate, vision and business goals.
The core competencies of an organization can help pinpoint the critical strengths and values that are shared by every individual within an organization (regardless of job title).
They help organizations define their vision and mission in measurable employee behaviors, improving everything from employee morale to profitability. The core competencies of an organization are also essential to the creation of a competency architecture.
E.g. Safety can be a core competency for a construction or electrical company.
E.g. Client Focus can be a core competency for an organization (if the company is invested in quality customer service or client service).
Below are examples of competencies that organizations (depending on their unique strengths or advantages) can use as one of their core competencies:
There is a significant difference between core competencies and skills.
Core competencies are more detailed and useful than skills. These specific competencies can help an organization determine if an individual has the needed behaviors to achieve success in a job role by assessing the person’s abilities, knowledge and skills (relative to an organization’s core competencies).
Skills focus more on an employee’s ability to perform a specified task or activity related to their job function. When measuring an employee’s skills, a HR profession would assess “what” the individual is able to do (based on the job role in question).
On the other hand, core competencies focus on the desired methodology (as defined by an organization) which helps to guide an employee’s use of a job-related skill. They define “how” an employee utilizes a specific skill to complete a task or project and include the abilities and knowledge required to use a particular skill.
Competencies are more detailed than skills and take a person's knowledge and abilities into account to determine whether a person has the right behaviors to succeed in their roles.
But because they have an internal and relational logic, using them as a foundation for talent management requires greater rigor and care than simply hunting for people that have the right skills.
We recommend a maximum of 3 to 4 core competencies for an organization.
The fewer the core competencies, the easier it is to apply them throughout an organization.
Having a limitless list of core competencies would do more harm than good, regardless of organization size and planning. Your focus should be to select 3 to 4 employee core competencies that are fundamental to achieving the organizational goals or objectives.
Some core competencies examples can include Continuous Learning, Teamwork or Critical Thinking.
Organizations that have a more limited set of core competencies can focus better on implementing these competencies and still have the time to focus on their daily business operations.
The core competencies of a company can help it become an industry leader and guide the development of future growth strategies. This is dependent on having a solid foundation of business core competencies and excelling in these competencies when pitted against the organization’s competitors.
Having the right core competencies will assist organizations in defining their mission and vision based on measurable employee behaviors. The positive impact of this can be seen in various aspects of a business, ranging from profitability to employee quality.
When an organization can properly define and validate its core competencies, it has marked out the essential strengths and values shared by every employee. This helps bring clarity and direction on which competencies should be developed in your workforce.
By linking employee behaviors to organizational objectives, core competencies can act as a guiding force to align your workforce performance to help support your organizational goals.