Competency framework


Shaw Group (Stone & Webster) was keen to use a framework to develop individuals in their teams. They had no competency framework in existence and no clarity around the technical skills needed to assess competence in role.

The approach

First, a common framework was needed to describe behavioural skills necessary for the majority of workers. The organisation decided that one framework should be used to describe the majority of roles in the business and this was developed by People and Organisation Development in partnership with the internal HR Team. After approval from key stakeholders, this was adopted as the behavioural model across the organisation.

The next task was to begin to profile roles and assign levels for each competency to each role. This step was carried out using an inclusive online process. By way of a questionnaire, each individual profiled his or her own role; this process was repeated by their line manager. This was not about individual competency but more about what level the role should be operating at. These results were combined to give a picture for each role of the competency profile. Final authorisation and sense checking came from the departmental heads.

The final stage was to describe the technical skill and knowledge needed for each role which was completed by a team from the organisation and facilitated by People and Organisation Development.

The results

Each role now had a specific competency profile to accompany the role profile. This was initially used for development purposes (the ultimate aim being to provide a Development Directory for each competency with guidance as to how to develop in that area). The development approach was incorporated quickly into the performance management process and the next step is to use it for succession planning and recruitment purposes.