The global skills and competency framework for the digital world

University of Auckland

Defining 330 roles, mapped with SFIA. Aligning a training programme and establishing a skills inventory.

A user story from the University of Auckland - originally published in Intelligent CIO APAC

A SFIA User Story about transforming the skills base of a high-calibre IT Team, defining 330 roles, mapping them with the SFIA global skills and competency framework, aligning a training programme and establishing a skills inventory.

University of Auckland User Story

Key learning points

  • Defined all of the IT roles then mapped them against the global skills and competency SFIA framework, before finally aligning them with a comprehensive training program
  • Established a digital learning portal aligned to the SFIA skills framework
  • Focus on ensuring our workforce have the means, the methods and the motivation to adapt to change at an optimum pace, by making up-skilling and cross-skilling an explicit priority and the practical application of learning a part of everyone’s job, not just something that is discretionary, 
  • Use SFIA as a common language to describe the skills needed and we profile all our roles using the framework so people can have clear understanding of the skills and proficiency levels expected of them.
  • Development planning for professional and technical skills is baked into performance management and personal development process, including having regular check-ins and conversations about individual and team goals and what skills growth is needed to achieve them.
  • Encourage everyone to plan in 10-20% of their time for experimentation, innovation and upskilling and we encourage lateral movement through and across our teams to provide more opportunities to learn and to apply learning
  • Encourage experts to work with our novices to help them apply what they have learned in abstract to solve real challenges in their day-to-day work
  • Using a competency framework makes it simple to set and agree expectations in a role using clear and objective language. It removes most of the ambiguity and provides a clear and explicit standard to aspire to or demonstrate. We were lucky in having SFIA available to us as an ICT function, so we had a very firm set of foundations on which to then build our approach to skills agility.
  • The benefit of using SFIA is that it is based on the combined knowledge, experience and feedback of thousands of technology professionals and can be used as a cornerstone for a broad range of people and skills related use cases, from attracting and recruiting better candidates, identifying and managing risks, spotting opportunities to make optimum use of ‘skills to hand’ and even planning different future scenarios and operating modes by using it for strategic workforce planning.