Employees require a variety of activities, tools, training, and education to improve their skillsets and to consistently provide high-quality performance in the workplace environment. The development of competency-based training is of critical importance in highly specialized areas such as medicine, where expert knowledge and mastery of different skills is necessary to perform the required roles and to achieve the desired results in saving lives and preventing harm to patients. It is expected that competency-based training will engage employees of different experience levels in methods to improve their individual performance, to minimize any problems associated with morale, and to renew their commitment to the organization if they believe that this form of training provides value for their careers. It is necessary for organizations to implement competency-based training as needed to improve outcomes and to provide employees with the tools that they require to maximize their contributions to the organization in an effective manner.
Organizations must demonstrate their ability to improve task efficiency by engaging in new concepts to expand training and knowledge for employees. The development of training tools to improve employee performance and satisfaction is critical to support continuous professional growth and development in the workplace, along with addressing gaps in performance that may impact organizational results. A successful strategy requires an understanding of how to balance the needs of employees in specific areas with the training tools that are available to support the growth of their skillsets to provide a greater contribution to the organization. A competency-based approach has the potential to engage individuals in different actions which are designed to provide guidance in specific areas and support employee engagement in a variety of activities which will support their professional growth (Brightwell & Grant, 2013). The benefits of competency-based training should be evaluated in greater detail and emphasize this approach for its practicality and viability within educational institutions, particularly when specific skillsets are essential to different roles, such as medical training. This type of specialty requires extensive knowledge and mastery of many different competencies and therefore, competency-based education should be considered for its benefits for this process in acquiring the knowledge that is required to improve performance and long-term success within a given role.
Competency-based training for employees is important because employees can increase their commitment to the organization and have a greater sense of direction regarding their specific roles and the purpose that they fill within the organization. In this context, there are specific factors to consider which recognize the need for improved efficiency and productivity and training in the workplace that can be accomplished with this approach to training. A successful strategy requires organizations to develop training tools and resources that are well-structured and efficient because they require less time away from routine activities which support consistent workflow and which lead to greater efficiency in operations (Brightwell & Grant, 2013). Furthermore, as students of a given set of competencies, it is known that “trainees need and want curricula of some sort. Trainees want to know what they need to know, and what may form the basis of their assessments” (Brightwell & Grant, 2013, p. 2). Therefore, organizations must focus their efforts on providing competency-based education and training that will enable employees to move forward in their careers and to explore new methods to increase their productivity in the workplace setting.
Improve Employee Satisfaction
A successful competency-based training program is instrumental in empowering employees because it provides them with a framework for meeting their established goals and objectives. At the same time, it supports employees’ desire to feel wanted and needed by their organizations, particularly if they recognize that their employers are fully engaged in providing them with tools and resources to expand their knowledge and to contribute to the organization at the highest possible level. When employees are engaged in their work, they are likely to feel more valued and will expand their contributions as much as possible to be recognized for their work. These actions, in turn, are likely to increase employee satisfaction within the workplace and reduce the risk of losing employees to other organizations if they become dissatisfied with their roles and the surrounding environment.
Revitalization and Development
Competency-based training may have another purpose to promote professional development and to revitalize an organization which has grown stagnant or has lost its direction. A competency-based curriculum requires extensive knowledge and a comprehensive approach to teaching which supports the dissemination of important information to employees in a specialized format, while allowing for greater flexibility and cohesion among individuals and teams (Whitehead & Kuper, 2015). The evolution of competency-based training requires the development of successful frameworks which are applied to training platforms and require characteristics which complement employees’ strengths, such as flexibility, compassion, and responding to the unknown effectively (Whitehead & Kuper, 2015). Competency-based education, however, can be challenging from a teaching perspective because there are many competencies in fields such as medicine which require extensive knowledge and training (Whitehead & Kuper, 2015). Many of these areas are highly complex and require continuous evaluation and monitoring to stay up to date on the latest tools and resources that will be transferred to employees, and this is an ongoing process with many challenges (Whitehead & Kuper, 2015).
Organizational Processes and Outputs
Competency-based education is designed to prepare employees for the next steps in their respective careers and to demonstrate their understanding and mastery of a competency to gain independence in performing said skill in an unsupervised capacity (Ten Cate, 2014). The organization must have the knowledge and expertise in place to disseminate this information to others effectively and with consistency so that employees become skilled in each required competency and can deliver them on their own (Ten Cate, 2014). The competency-based curriculum must provide a framework for success through the training tools that are available and require employees to embrace new information and knowledge in a timely manner, as this will promote greater engagement and allow them to deliver these competencies effectively to others (Ten Cate, 2014). Employees must master these competencies and demonstrate independence to others so that they can have a greater understanding of their knowledge and how it impacts other people and the organization.
Success of Improvement Efforts
Improving employee morale, commitment, knowledge, and expertise with competency-based training requires evaluation tools to improve the delivery of these programs and to obtain feedback regarding their effectiveness. Educational delivery is a critical component because employees should acquire new forms of knowledge and skills that will enable them to master the aforementioned competencies. At the same time, they should have the resources that are necessary to address areas which they find limiting or insufficient to master the competencies in question. It is important for two-way communication to take place regarding competency-based training for this process to have the desired impact on an organization and on employees’ potential and performance. This is essential because it strengthens the dynamic between teachers and students and supports feedback and adjustments as necessary to improve the mastery of these competencies more effectively and with greater consistency.
Employees within an organization require a unique set of tools and resources to improve their performance and to experience continuous growth in their roles. Competency-based training is an essential component of this process and requires the astute delivery of knowledge and expertise which is grounded in strong perspectives and approaches to improve employee performance and to provide resources to grow and thrive. A successful organization will implement competency-based training as a valuable resource to improve knowledge and growth among employees and provide them with additional tools to contribute at a higher level and to expand their knowledge in accordance with the required competencies to meet specific roles. However, competency-based training requires expert knowledge and specific areas of focus that are supported by leadership and which promote employee engagement, and this is a process of continuous improvement which requires creativity and innovation to succeed. A comprehensive approach to education and training is required to realize the benefits of competency-based training and to provide employees with the tools that they need to achieve their goals and objectives in a timely manner.
- Brightwell, A., & Grant, J. (2013). Competency-based training: who benefits? Postgraduate
Medical Journal, 89(1048), 107-110.
- Ten Cate, O. (2014). AM last page: what entrustable professional activities add to a competency-
based curriculum. Academic Medicine, 89(4), 691.
- Whitehead, C. R., & Kuper, A. (2015). Competency-based training for physicians: are we doing
no harm? Canadian Medical Association Journal, 187(4), E128-E129.