It’s Measurement Time…

Tips for Measuring the Success of your Competency Project

You have decided that you will take the time to define the requirements needed for successful performance for the jobs across your organization (e.g., competencies, knowledge, and experience). You will then use these requirements to help you make better hiring decisions, onboard your people, and provide opportunities for learning and development and career growth. How will you know that your project is successful? What competency project performance indicators will you use?

If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it. Let’s walk through 5 things you should consider as you plan your measurement journey.

Tip 1: Start Early

Too often people wait until the end of their competency project to try and measure the success or impact. Deciding when and what project performance indicators to measure should start during the planning phase of your project. This way you can establish a baseline and compare and contrast various project performance indicators before and after you have started to use competencies throughout your various HR applications.

Tip 2: Identify Key Stakeholders

When you define your goals and objectives you will want to ensure that the leadership team supports these goals and that you are not missing anything. When you collect information to measure the impact of your competency project or your project performance indicators, you will also want to consider the various perspectives of those affected by the project (e.g., employees, managers, recruiters, trainers, customers).

Tip 3: Link Your Goals to Your Need for Competencies

You have very likely identified a need that you are hoping competencies can help you to address. For example, you may have noticed that your organization is struggling to hire quality candidates or maybe it is taking new hires a long time to adjust and perform as you would expect them to or maybe you have noticed that a lot of people are choosing to leave your organization. Whatever the reason, once you have a sense of what’s driving the need for change and the need for competencies, you can begin to identify the specific goals of your project and the criteria or project performance indicators for measuring these goals.

Tip 4: Identify How you will Measure Success

What methods will you use to collect information on your competency project performance indicators? Will you use interviews or questionnaires? Why not both? You may already have in place some great sources of information (e.g., engagement surveys, customer satisfaction ratings, performance ratings, training evaluations, retention data, etc.). Try to use the data you may already be collecting, rather than reinventing the wheel.

Tip 5: Identify Different Types of Measures

There are two main types of measures that you can use to measure your competency project performance indicators. Use the table below to help you identify measures when using competencies for each HR application from selection to succession planning. Let’s walk through an example, using competencies to make better hiring decisions.

Type of Evaluation What it Shows Why it is Helpful Sample Measures
  • How well is your initiative working?

  • Is your initiative accessible to the intended audience?

  • Are they using it?

  • Does the process work?
  • Allows you to monitor how well your initiative is working or being implemented.

  • Helps you identify areas that you can improve how you implement competencies into your process.

  • % of hiring managers trained to use competencies in interviews.

  • Time to fill a position.

  • Cost per hire.

  • Manager's time per hire.

  • Manager's perceptions of ease of use of the interview tools. What do they like? What do they find challenging?

  • Outcomes and Impact
  • Is your initiative having the desired effect on the employees and/or business?
  • Tells you if your competency initiative is meeting your goals and objectives.

  • For instance, is your initiative helping you to make better hiring decisions and hire quality candidates?

  • Employee satisfaction.

  • Intention to stay.

  • Speed to full contribution (productivity).

  • Number of orders filled or service calls made.

  • Rating against the competencies.

  • By following these 5 tips, you will ensure that everyone from employees to managers to the organization as whole, realizes the true value of using competencies.