Glossary definition

What is a competency assessment?

A competency assessment is an evaluation of a person’s skills and abilities.

Employers use competency assessments to map an employee’s existing capabilities against the capabilities the employee needs to carry out their role.

Competency assessments are also used in recruitment, to determine whether a candidate has the right skills for a job.

They can be part of an interview or review process, where a manager questions the employee about their experience to find out whether and where they have applied a particular set of competencies.

The first step in a competency assessment is to break down all of the skills needed to do the job well, and to decide how expert the employee or candidate needs to be in each skill.

In a role, employees may self-assess against this list and provide examples to support their rating, showing where they have successfully used each competency.

A completed competency assessment will reveal areas of strength and weakness and target areas for development. Once this is agreed, the manager and employee may work on an action plan to address any skills gaps.

This might include training, shadowing or setting a series of goals to move the employee up to the required level.