The global skills and competency framework for the digital world

Levels of responsibility: Level 3 - Apply

Essence of the level: Performs varied tasks, sometimes complex and non-routine, using standard methods and procedures. Works under general direction, exercises discretion, and manages own work within deadlines. Proactively enhances skills and impact in the workplace

SFIA 9 is in development

  • SFIA 9 beta due in early July 2024
  • SFIA 9 planned for publication October 2024

This is a prototype for SFIA 9. It is subject to change before publication.

Guidance notes


The SFIA Levels are levels of responsibility. As they progress, the levels describe increasing impact, responsibility and accountability in the workplace.

  • the generic attributes of autonomy, influence and complexity indicate the level of responsibility
  • the business skills/behavioural factors describe the behaviours required to be effective at the level of responsibility
  • the knowledge attributes describe what you need to know to meet your level of responsibility.

Understanding these attributes will guide you in getting the most out of SFIA and are also critical to understanding and applying the levels described in the SFIA skill descriptions.


Works under general direction to complete assigned tasks. Receives guidance and has work reviewed at agreed milestones. May delegate routine tasks to others within own team.


Works with and influences team decisions. Has a transactional level of contact with people outside their team, including internal colleagues and external contacts.


Performs a range of work, sometimes complex and non-routine, in varied environments.


Has knowledge of a range of role-specific practices to complete tasks within defined boundaries. Has an appreciation of how this knowledge is applied to the wider business context. 

Business skills / Behavioural factors

Decision making

  • Uses discretion in identifying and responding to complex issues related to own assignments. 
  • Determines when issues should be escalated to a higher level. 

  • Organises and keeps track of own work (and others where needed) to meet agreed timescales.

  • Understands and collaborates on the analysis of user/customer needs and represents this in their work.
Problem solving

  • Applies a methodical approach to investigate and evaluate options to resolve routine and moderately complex issues. 

  • Applies and contributes to creative thinking techniques, looking for ways to improve their own work and team activities.

  • Communicates with team and stakeholders inside and outside the organisation clearly explaining and presenting information. Contributes to a range of work-related conversations and listens to others to gain an understanding and asks probing questions relevant to their role.

  • May guide team members.
  • Reviews and analyses current working practices to identify improvements. 
Adaptability and resilience

  • Adapts and is responsive to change and shows initiative in adopting new methods or technologies.
Learning and professional development

  • Absorbs and applies new information effectively with the ability to share learnings with colleagues.
  • Takes the initiative in identifying and negotiating their own appropriate development opportunities. 
Digital mindset

  • Explores and applies relevant digital tools and skills for their role.
  • Understands and effectively applies appropriate methods, tools, applications and processes. 
Security, privacy and ethics

  • Applies appropriate professionalism and working practices and knowledge to work.