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SDF5 Skills Audit Full Article

SDF5 Skills Audit Full Article

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Published by Cheri Ho

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Published by: Cheri Ho on Jan 19, 2014
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SKILLS AUDITSBy Heather Watson (The Skills Framework)
“A key piece of information an organisation needs to improve is to know what skills and knowledge the organisation requires and what skills and knowledge the organisation currently has’ ( 
What is a Skills Audit?
 A skills audit is essentially a process for measuring and recording the skills of an individual or group. The main purpose for conducting a skills audit in an organisation is to identify the skills and knowledge that the organisation requires, as well as the skills and knowledge that the organisation currently has. kills audits are also usually done to determine training needs so an organisation can improve its skills and knowledge. !owever skills audits are also completed for other reasons such as restructuring and deployment. A skills audit gathers more information than simply your current qualifications level. "t firstly identifies the skills matrices for the organisation and then delves into what the current competencies are of each individual against this predefined set of skills required to fulfill a specific role. The outcome of the skills audit process is a skills gap analysis. This information will enable the organisation to improve by providing the appropriate training and development to individuals to cater for the identified skill gaps. The skills audit process will also provide information which can be used for purposes such as internal employee selection and to ensure that the correct person is deployed in each position.
#.Bene$its o$ Skills A!its in the Work%la"e
The key piece of information an organisation needs to improve and to deliver to its #ission tatement and strategy is to know what skills and knowledge the organisation requires and what skills and knowledge the organisation currently has. $T% consultancies &www.rtoconsultant.com) claim that the skills audit 'provides a snapshot of the organizations skills base( that allows identification of specific training needs, prioritization of training and meeting of employee desires and aspirations.This information is essential for a number of reasons
*ithout this information you don+t know where to improve.
*ith this information your training and development will be better planned and more focused.
kills Audits
$ecruiting needs are better defined and more likely to result in the most appropriate candidate.
-lacement decisions are easier with knowledge of current competence levels.
areer pathing and succession planning is assisted with accurate information on individuals.Therefore the key benefits of a skills audit are
alid and valuable *orkplace kills -lans.
"mproved skills and knowledge.
0ower training and development costs because development efforts are more focused.
 Acquisition and use of information that can be used for purposes such as internal employee selection and placement.
"ncreased productivity as people are better matched to their positions. The results of a skills audit can be reported for each division to show individual and divisional competency gaps against competency needs. This in turn, assists with the collation of a *orkplace kills -lan that complies with the provisions of the kills 1evelopment Act and eta regulations. 0ancaster, #abaso and #eyer &233, p45) claim that 'the skills plan can only be produced after the organisation has conducted a skills audit and a comprehensive needs analysis(6urthermore, certain etas, such as the 7ankseta, have included skills auditing as one of the requirements for the discretionary grant. This means that organisations that conduct skills audits in a structured manner, may submit levy claims against 8rant 1 of the skills development regulations.
&.Te"hni'!es $or on!"tin a Skills A!it
There are numerous techniques to conduct a skills audit based on the conte9t and strategy of the organisation. "t is vital that the first step in implementing a skills audit is to analyse the organisational conte9t and strategy in relation to the ob:ectives of the skills audit. The conte9t of the organisation may be identified based on time available, logistical issues, primary reasons for the skills audit and the prevalent socio;political environment. The organisational strategy provides the basis for alignment of skills to current and future organisational needs. This alignment is essential to ensure consistency with business strategy and value of skills audit results.
kills Audits2
The process to be followed essentially consists of the followingThere are three key stages to a skills audit. The first is to determine what skills each employee requires. The second stage is to determine which of the required skills each employee has. The third is to analyse the results and determine skills development needs. The outcome of the skills audit process is usually a training needs analysis, which will enable the organisation to target and also provide information for purposes such as recruitment and selection, performance management and succession planning.
a. etermine skills requirements
"n order to determine skills requirements, an organisation should identify current and future skills requirements per :ob. The end result is a skills matri9 with related competency definitions. 1efinitions can be allocated against various proficiency levels per :ob, such as basic, intermediate and comple9.
!. Audit actual skills
The actual skills audit process is outlined below and involves an individual self;audit and skills audit. $esults are collated into reporting documents that may include statistical graphs, qualitative reports and recommendations.
c. etermine development needs and plan for training"restructuring 
%nce skills audit information has been collected, an analysis of the results may be used for planning purposes relating to training and development and other !uman $esource interventions. $ecommendations are then discussed and agreed actions are implemented.The entral <ueensland TA6= state that 'a
skills a!it
 is a process where skills held by employees are identified and compared with skills required now and in the future so that the skill shortfall or surplus can be determined. This skill shortfall forms the basis of a
 Trainin *ees Analysis (T*A)
 so that the company can reach the desired skill base amongst its employees( &www.cquit.net).To fully comprehend the skills audit process, an overview of competence is useful. "n order to understand the notion of competence, it is useful to e9amine A<A>s definition of applied competence.'Applied ompetence is the union of practical, foundational and refle9ive competence( &ource 8uidelines for the Assessment of ?<6 $egistered @nit tandards)
kills Audits
a. etermine skills requirements!. Audit actual skillsc. etermine development needs and plan for training" restructuring 

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