Posts in Getting Started
How to Use Standard Competency Models to Accelerate Learning Transfer

Don't just hope for learning transfer to occur... do something about it... QUICKLY!

HOW:  Join our ATD webinar live! Register now!  Even if you can't make it, you'll get a link to the recording.

WHEN:  Wednesday, September 21, 2016 at 1:00 p.m. Eastern Time during Career Week.

WHO:  Cheryl Lasse of SkillDirector, and Gordon Richie from IBM

WHY:  So you can use Standard Competency Models to accelerate learning transfer

The responsibility of the talent development function is to provide the best opportunity for learning transfer to occur, such that the required skills are acquired and business results follow. Competency models identify what the organization needs people in a particular role to do so the organization can succeed and create a competitive advantage. They motivate people by providing a road map for how to succeed in any position. There are three steps to accelerating learning transfer with competency-based learning:

  1. Create a competency model.
  2. Make your competency model actionable.
  3. Accelerate learning transfer through competency-based, personalized learning.

However, creating competency models is perceived as heavy lifting, particularly in large organizations. That’s where standard competency models come in. What if you could use a standard competency model instead of creating one? Then you could complete all three steps and accelerate learning transfer in just weeks.

In this webcast you will learn:

  • The components of a standard competency model
  • How to make it actionable in weeks
  • How to accelerate learning transfer, leveraging the 70-20-10 framework

You won't want to miss it!  Register now


News / Events / Blog Posts | SkillDirector
Where do I start? 3 steps for organizations who want to create competency-based learning

(Question posted by participant in Accelerating Learning Transfer webinar)

I'm going to assume that you have a competency model (capability model) for each job role or job family. And your competency model contains these things:

  • A list of skills or tasks someone in that role should be able to do, grouped into competencies or task categories
  • A list of behavioral examples that show what each skill or task looks like at various levels of proficiency
  • A target level of proficiency for each skill or task

Identify your learning opportunities and assets (formal and informal) that are relevant to the skills or tasks in the model. Think out of the box. This is an inventory you’ll use for mapping. Another way you can think of this is learning curation. EXCLUDE anything unrelated to the model. 

Map your skills/tasks in the competency model to the learning opportunities for a job role or family. What you're mapping is the target proficiency's behavioral examples to the learning objectives of the learning opportunities. So if Task X has a target proficiency of 3 for a Mechanical Engineer, and level 3 has 4 behavioral examples, you want to map it to learning opportunities who have objectives that would cover the 4 behavioral examples. This may be 1 or 4, or anywhere in between. 

Fill the gaps. Propose a description of a learning opportunity you think would be required to close this skill gap if it existed. For example, if the task is to use a checklist, then the learning opportunity may be a job aid to be able to use that checklist. If it is a high level skill (analysis, synthesis, evaluation), you may propose something like a skill practice. You’re not actually creating those activities. Let people self-assess against your model first, know the demand and then prioritize build/buy/curate decisions.

More details at:



News / Events / Blog Posts | SkillDirector
Where do I start? 2 tips for organizations who want to define competencies/capabilities

(Question posted by participant in Accelerating Learning Transfer webinar)

Start small! Pick one or more related roles in a group that is either:

  • Highly impactful (e.g., closing skill gaps there would REALLY make a difference - revenue, costs, errors, etc.)
  • Highly visible (a success story would permeate the organization)
  • Highly influential (a success in that group would have others dying to be next)

Nothing pleases me more than when we create competency models for a few job roles and we get support requests from non-system users who say, "when will my job be loaded?"

If you can pick a group that is all 3, that's a bonus! 

Also look for groups where in general, there is a culture of wanting to make things better, and change is expected...not one where they are change resistant. 


News / Events / Blog Posts | SkillDirector