Competency-based human resource management: a key to the success of the civil service organization

Jurgita Domeikiene, Team Leader, International Key Expert on HR/PAR, and Mr. Edvardas Žukauskas, International Mid-term Expert on HR/PAR put together their professional thoughts for Derzsluzhbovec.

The experience of the civil services in different countries shows that integration of the competency model into the organization’s performance management leads to more clear standards for assessment of civil servants’ skills, enhanced clarity, credibility, and consistency of decisions regarding human resource management.

The quality of the selection of civil servants is improving. The effectiveness of career management for civil servants is also improving and training for civil servants is being organized more effectively.

Does it work in the Ukrainian context? Can it be useful for the Ukrainian civil service? We say—absolutely. This is what we would like to demonstrate in this article.

What competency means

The term ‘competency’ could be perceived in different ways. Lawyers or civil servants are more likely to think it refers to the scope of authority on any subject in a legal context. However, in this article, we will look at another meaning for this term, as it applies to human resource management.

A competency model is a complex personnel management tool. Its complex nature is explained by the fact that is used in multiple, integrated, personnel management processes.

Personnel‘ is used here as a more general notion to avoid using ’human resources, human capital, etc., not to encourage discussions relating to that terminology.

It is obvious that personnel performance has an influence on the organization’s effectiveness. A well-designed competency model helps to identify what kind of employees are required—their behavior, skills, and competencies—to make the organization perform effectively.

Technically speaking, a competency consists of:

  • its name.
  • its definition.
  • the level of competency development (in most cases a scale of 3 to 4 levels, or different indicators are developed for different levels of positions).
  • and indicators (often called competency descriptions) that help to identify the level of its development.

For instance, the Strategic Vision competency may be defined as the ability to plan the organization’s future possibilities taking into account a broader context, to bring unit tasks in line with the organization’s priorities, and anticipate the effects of the decisions for the entire organization. To identify the demonstrated level of this competency, behavior indicators can be applied:

  • demonstrates future-oriented work.
  • provides a full analysis of the company’s or unit’s strengths and weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
  • has the overall view of the organization and its mandate in a broader societal context, when priorities are determined.
  • brings unit targets in line with the organization’s strategic goals.
  • identifies strategic problems and risks that prevent the organization from achieving its strategic goals and eliminates them in a timely manner.
  • steps away from operational issues and concentrates on the long-term perspective

The full version of the publication is under the link

Let’s implement changes together!