The global skills and competency framework for the digital world

Start of SFIA 8 consultation

The SFIA Foundation has approved plans to publish an updated version of SFIA in 2021. This is the largest and most visible part of the ongoing commitment to ensure SFIA remains relevant and useful for the global industry.

Estimated reading time 2 min, 23 sec


  • Industry practitioners have always driven updates to SFIA.
  • The SFIA Foundation manages an open and transparent update process on behalf of the user community.
  • Anyone can submit change requests and/or ideas for improvement.  

All change requests have remained public and visible since the publication of SFIA 7 in 2018...

  • This includes ideas submitted previously, which didn't get published in SFIA 7.
  • Website users have been able to read, comment on, and add new change requests since then.
  • You can review these and add your change requests here.

The design of SFIA makes it flexible and easy for organisations to include it in their preferred ways of working...

  • You can browse all the SFIA content on this website.
  • SFIA is simple to get hold of and easy to copy and paste into your own tools and documents.

Many other frameworks are closed by design...

  • You can only access the content by paying fees or subscriptions
  • The content can be difficult to get hold off and hard to extract
    •  e.g. in encrypted PDF documents that do not allow printing or "copy and paste" of content
  • The owners update their framework "behind closed doors" - before pushing updates out to users. Some frameworks ask for a payment before you can submit ideas for changes.

Scope of SFIA 8 consultation

As for SFIA 7, the consultation will focus on …

  • Industry themes. These are hot topics where SFIA users are looking for guidance on the implications for professional skills and competencies. 
  • The needs of key SFIA user groups across professional disciplines
  • Change requests from SFIA users. These are the views of SFIA practitioners using SFIA in their day to day work.

We may need to consider changes to …

  • The core framework - this includes SFIA’s levels of responsibilities, the SFIA skills and the SFIA skill level descriptions.
  • Other parts of the SFIA eco-system
    • As an example - the idea for SFIA views came from the SFIA 7 consultation. SFIA users find them useful, and so we can build on these.
    • Support in the form of additional user guidelines or mappings to complementary industry frameworks.

We plan to publish updates to SFIA in 2021.

The proposed date for publication of SFIA 8 is Q3 2021. We are starting in-depth discussions earlier than we did for the SFIA 7 update project.

There is no need to wait for SFIA 8 before starting your adoption of SFIA.

  • In short - go ahead, start your project using SFIA 7. Experience has shown that starting to use SFIA as soon as possible provides more value than waiting for an update.
  • Like previous updates – SFIA 8 will be an evolution not a revolution.
  • SFIA updates are not like a new version of software. There are no compatibility issues between versions.
  • This is a deliberate approach to help users move to newer versions when they are ready.

Starting discussions and investigations now enables …

  • More time for in-depth consultation and more time for working with user groups and working parties
  • A reduction in lead time for translations.
    • We publish SFIA 7 in 10 languages
    • We are proud of this achievement and the fact that SFIA practitioners commit so much effort to support translations
    • We wish to improve the support provided to users and for SFIA 8 we are adopting a continuous translation approach supported by a translation management system
  • Less intense work load for volunteers.
    • Over the last twenty years; our volunteers have made SFIA the success it is today.
    • We rely on their effort and commitment. These people fit their work on SFIA around their busy working lives.
    • We want to help them by reducing the intensity of that workload and spreading the effort over a longer time.

Short video - approach and themes for SFIA 8