Outsourcing vs. Creating Your Own Competency Framework

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Outsourcing vs. Creating Your Own Competency Framework

Competency frameworks give you the tools to gauge an employee’s ability to perform well in a role based on behavior, personality, and hard skills – allowing to go beyond using what’s on paper to determine how people actually perform. But, while undeniably valuable, many companies struggle with determining what’s needed and why. Creating a competency framework can require months or even years of research – leading many to outsource

However, with many pros and cons to each outsourcing and creating your own competency framework, it’s important that you consider more than simply costs.

Outsourcing Competency Frameworks

Outsourcing a competency framework means connecting with an external company that already has a significant amount of benchmarked data, an established process, and “fill in the blanks” data which they can quickly and easily customize based on your specific company. Many have industry-specific solutions, which can be easily and cost-effectively updated for your company – giving you a competency framework you can establish quickly and at minimal cost.

Developing Your Own

Many organizations choose to develop competency frameworks internally, either using existing benchmarked data or starting from scratch. This involves considerable internal research to map competencies to roles, source objectives, source an organizational and management framework, and ensure ongoing improvement.

This means aligning business, sourcing and strategy to create a single list of objectives, identifying competencies, mapping existing competencies to success across teams and roles to ensure that they are effective and important, developing a framework for teams and relationships to develop collaboration and ensure that persons with competencies are available where needed, and establish a framework for monitoring performance and effectiveness.

You have to develop internal resources to:

  • Analyze existing job roles and what makes them productive
  • Interview leaders and workers and compile data
  • Structure how competencies contribute towards end-goals
  • Define how each competency contributes and why

Choosing the Best Solution for Your Organization

If you can successfully handle internal research and analysis, building your own competency model from the ground up may be beneficial. However, most organizations benefit considerably more by bringing in not only third-party research but also a third-party perspective. Outsourcing allows you to adopt research compiled across your industry – but have it customized and modified to meet your company’s specific needs. Because the bulk of the work is already finished, you can easily identify what applies to your company, create management and leadership frameworks around it, and develop accordingly, rather than starting with nothing.


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