The Basics and Benefits of Competency-Based Training
Training and development play a critical role in important business outcomes like employee retention, professional development, and hiring processes like on-boarding. However, training and development is also a vital piece of workplace culture and employee engagement.
Though it can be overlooked, employees need training and development catered to their individual personalities and learning habits. How will your team learn, grow, and thrive in your organization if they’re stuck in lengthy, unengaging training programs?
The answer is competency-based training focused on specific skills. Here’s how it can benefit your organization:
The Basics of Competency-Based Training
Competency-based training is training and development that focuses on specific competencies, or skills. What makes this style of training unique is that the training programs are broken down into individual courses, or modules. These modules focus on a single skill at a time, taking trainees through a course based on their mastery of each of the individual skills in the program. Simply put, competency-based training is personalized to better suit your development needs. Your employees are individuals, after all. They each have their own way to learn, train, and develop.
Think of a competency-based training program like an obstacle course, each portion of the obstacle course, whether it be climbing a wall or swimming through a pool, requires a different skill to complete it. Once completed, the obstacle course moves on to a new challenge that requires a new skill.
In other words, your employees that enter a competency-based training program will focus on skills or competencies, sometimes referred to as skills-based training, following the desired track until they have achieved goal completion.
Specific skills can be grouped into modules to emphasize specific types of training. For example, if you’re looking to train your sales team on a specific set of skills to improve their sales capabilities, these types of competencies can be grouped into a specific module. Through competency-based training, employees learn and demonstrate their mastery of specific skills before moving on to further segments of training.
The Benefits of Competency-Based Training
The ability to customize and tailor your training sets competency-based training above other kinds of employee development. Simply put, large-scale standardized training and development might work for some, but not all people and personalities are the same. Employees experiencing competency-based training reap a myriad of benefits from a personalized training process.
Competency-based training is…
Competency-based modules are broken down by specific skills to deliver training in shorter, and more manageable doses. This frees up time your team would have spent taking the larger, more time-consuming training program.
In other words, employees can complete training modules on their own time, or the training schedule you create with them. The key takeaway here is that the schedule is in your own control. Modules are ready to be completed however you set out to accomplish them.
Need your entire team trained on a specific skill, but don’t have the time for the group to meet, altogether, at once? Competency-based training modules are self-paced and user-managed – meaning they’re adaptable for your team to take, train, and develop skills at their own pace.
Have you ever met someone that’s incredibly talented at taking tests? Or someone who is capable of reading and comprehending text much faster than their peers? Everyone learns in their own unique way, so segmenting your training this way will cater to the individual learning styles of your team.
Get training on the specific skills you need, when you need them. Some larger or bundled training and development programs can be costly – as they typically don’t allow you to segment the specific skills training you need. That’s where the competitive value of competency-based training comes into the fold.
Depending on your training needs, module-based training sessions can be much more cost-efficient. The best part? These microlearning training sessions save you money while still offering all the training and development benefits your organization needs (while also cutting out the training segments you don’t).
Modify your training programs and modules to suit your interests, skills, and development needs. Remember how we talked about how individuals have their own unique learning styles? The same concept can be applied to training and development. Some people are naturally more talented at specific skills than others, and that goes for how people learn new skills, too.
With competency-based training, you can customize how your team tackles training by catering your programs to meet their individual needs. Pair the training with each individual employee’s personality assessment in order to create a more effective and targeted development program.
According to LinkedIn’s 2018 Workplace Learning Report…
- 93% of employees say they would stay at a company longer if it invested in their careers.
- 68% of employees prefer to learn at work.
- 58% of employees prefer to learn at their own pace.
Competency-based training is about the professional development of your team. The secret to this method of training is that it can be paired with your other employee training and development strategies. Each training module can be used as a stand-alone training session tailoring the experience to your training goals. Need to cross-train your salespeople on a single particular skill? Competency-based training makes it possible to scale up or scale down your training, for whatever you need.
Want to train your employees so they have the skills to compete with the best? With Caliper Precision Series, your company can offer self-paced microlearning around the competencies related to their skill development and professional success.