Skill and Program Infrastructure

Skill and Program Infrastructure
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Welcome to session three Skill and Program Infrastructure: Foundation for Building Your Skills Competency Program. In this session, I will provide an example of how to set up an infrastructure and engagement framework for your program and for building the skills. I will present the quad model roles and responsibilities of the model and skills program phases.

In session one, we created the business value proposition to ensure alignment with the business. We now need to ensure business accountability and engagement. Many times the task of rolling out skills as assigned to human resources, talent management, learning development, with limited engagement from the business. While these teams have expertise in the methodology and structure, they are not the subject matter experts or the SME of the business or disciplines, process procedures, or skills. To drive business engagement and ownership, we created the quad model. I found the business must own and be accountable for the skills used to develop its employees to ensure success. The quad model provides you with a structure for building engagement. It will also establish the governance of the skill and program infrastructure and the sustainability of the skills. As the name implies, the model is broken down into four groups.

Learning competency and development team

This is typically an HR so as inclusive of HR items. This group is responsible for the infrastructure and the program. They will facilitate and manage the development, implementation, and sustainability of the skills and the program. This includes learning resources aligned to the skills.

Now the business discipline advisory council

These are representatives from the business and the discipline. I would recommend director or above level. These individuals are responsible for the identification and allocation of your subject matter experts for the development of the skills, competency, and training. They drive adoption with their teams and identify the business needs and priorities. By designating and allocating resources to support the SME and the training groups, this establishes engagement and accountability for the business. This is the business’s skin in the game.

Now let’s move to the skills competency SME group

They are your subject matter experts in the discipline. They will work together to identify your enterprise or core skills that are used across all roles within a discipline and specific skills for each role. They are responsible for engaging with others in the discipline for review and feedback. They also will become experts on the skills and the biggest advocates because they created them.

The last group training subject matter experts

These individuals are identified by either the advisory council or many times are the same skill SMEs. These individuals help with the content identification and review of learning resources that align with the skills. They also may become your internal delivery for courses created to support the skills.

The skills competency program phases

I found this slide beneficial and communicating where we were in our skill competency development and implementation. I use this slide with our advisory council and groups to outline the next steps and recognize the accomplishments of the different groups. There is a large amount of upfront work on setting the infrastructure and foundation. Once you’ve put these in place, you can move to the different phases smoothly and quickly with ongoing engagement across the quad.

As I said, we use these slides and others in our change management communications to recognize the business’s commitment of resources and time toward the development of their own employees through a skills program.

To recap skills and program infrastructure:
The objective of the quad model is to drive engagement and accountability with and for the business. They are the SMEs of the business and will become the SMEs of skills competencies. Identify the model, roles, and responsibilities that work with your business. This allows them to allocate the right resources. Use the phases with everyone so they know what has been accomplished and where they are in the skills journey.

Join us for our next session, Competency Structures. Missed the last episode in this series, Competency Models, check it out here.

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