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How to use the Core Competency Framework The document contains extensive research and expertise and might on first approach appear daunting. Unpacking the information and understanding how to apply it is of course key to its value. We recommend that you approach the document in sections as and when you need them.

o The first 10 pages give you some detail about the context and how to use the document. o The following 26 pages provide you with in depth descriptions of each of the values and behaviours; these are followed by 3 pages of suggested company structures and notes on the generic roles.

o Finally the appendix contains useful generic role descriptions, which can form job descriptions should you need a reference point.  

 Consortium for Participatory Arts Learning 2011


So here are some practical ways you might use it… People Managers Organisational Director/Management Use the generic roles and structure as a template for organisational and role design.

Use the competencies for: • performance appraisal and development or make decisions regarding promotion.


Use the competencies to: • design and deliver recruitment and selection activity • evaluate organisational performance or programme effectiveness • set organisational goals • promote professional excellence.

Project Managers Use the competencies to: • set project goals and to evaluate outcome.


  External Partners and Funders Use the competencies:  as a benchmark to help make evaluative judgments across the sector.  to prove “value” for the money and time invested in a project or organisation.  

All Creative Practitioners Use the competencies: • for reflective practice • to review your own performance or that of your team • to gain more insight into your own personal strengths and weaknesses.


Everyone Use the role descriptions and the competencies to:  create personal development plans for CPD and to demonstrate your own capability and development ▪ communicate in a common language with your colleagues across the sector.   Fundraisers Use the competencies to: • inform descriptions of proposed methodology and outcomes.


 Consortium for Participatory Arts Learning 2011


Case Study One: Your Prescap Ben Hunt, Chief Executive   1.  What's  the  name  and  nature  of   your  organisation,  in  a  nutshell?     Your   Prescap,   is   an   arts   based   community   development   company,   that   exists   to   advance   the   education   of   the   public   primarily,   but   not   exclusively,   across   the   North   West   of   England   in   the   appreciation   and  practice  of  the  arts.    The  charity's  vision   is   to   be   the   creative   centre   of   a   thriving   society   in   Lancashire   and   beyond.   To   achieve   this,   Your   Prescap   designs   and   delivers   opportunities   for   everyone   to   realise   their   potential   through   arts   and   media.       2.  What  did  you  need  to  use  the   framework  for?     We  have  used  the  framework  in  a  variety  of   ways   –   for   recruitment,   assessment   of   artists,   appraisal   and   developing   training   for   artists.     In   all   of   these   areas   we   felt   it   would   be   good   practice   to   use   the   framework  agreed  with  our  peers  to  start  to   establish  the  competencies  of  the  sector.              Consortium for Participatory Arts Learning 2011


        3.   How   did   you   choose   to   approach   the  framework?     With   care!     At   first   it   was   large   and   frightening.    So  we  stopped  and  rethought:    

 “What was it we needed from the role/person, and then what was the competency in that area.“

  The   framework   is   extensive,   which   is   good,   but   we   realised   you   can’t   write   a   job   description   which   encompasses   everything   –   so   what   does   the   role   require   in   those   areas,   at   which   level   and   what   should   we   expect   from   them,   based   on   the   framework   –   using   the   generic   role   profiles   here   will   help.     Interestingly   though,   we   obviously   have   a   good   idea   already,   so   in   some   senses   it   seems   like   it’s   obvious,   the   framework   is   there   to   provide   a   common   language   for   the   sector   in   terms   of   role   competency.   We   often   know   it   already,   so   it   works   as   a   checkpoint  and  reference  and  in  that  role  it   starts  to  really  work!          

        4.  How  useful  was  it  for  you?     How  useful  is  it,  do  you  mean?       At   first   it   was   a   bit   of   a   bind,   trying  to   match   all   those   competencies   but   that’s   not   the   way  to  use  it.  Since  realising  this  it  actually   became  quite  a  dynamic  document,  it  can  be   used   in   a   variety   of   ways:   discussing   with   partners   what   they   can   expect   from   people   involved,   thinking   about   what   kind   of   person   will   fit   the   task   when   planning   a   project  or  new  role  and  thinking  about  CPD-­‐   how   can   this   person   go   further,   what   more   could  they  do?   That  doesn’t  mean  to  say  we  do  that  all  the   time,   so   as   a   reference   to   come   back   to   is   really   good   as   well.     If   something   has   been   planned,   we   may   go   back   and   check   the   competencies,   (the   wheel   is   useful   for   this)   are   we   in   the   right   area?   Bingo!!   And   that’s  back  to  the  last  point  above  (3),  if  it’s   right,   then   to   some   extent   we   should   already  have  that  in  us  and  we  do.     But   that   seems   to   suggest   we   don’t   need   it,   which   we   do.     The ultimate use

for it, for us, is that it’s used as a reference point, checking your standards and uniting it   –   if   I’m   in   the   right   area,   then   I’ve   judged   this   right,   and   that   is   very   powerful  really.  

5.  What  were  the  key  areas  of  most   use  to  you  and  your  organisation?     Its  not  so  much  the  areas/competencies  that   are   key,   but   the   sections   within   them   –   for   example   in   Creative   Practice   the   elements   around   innovation   and   being   resourceful   are   easy   to   identify   and   discuss,   but   inspiring   others   less   so,   and   if   the   former   are   strong   then   the   inspiration   may   follow.     And  there  are  similar  sections  in  the  others   that   are   harder   to   quantify   and   so   concentrating   on   those   that   are,   makes   it   easier.     In   general   though,   and   going   back   to   the  point  that  using  it  to  back  up  decisions,   finding  it  most  useful  to  double  check  areas   and  ideas.     The  role  profiles  were  well  used  initially,  as   a   starting   point   and   guide.   For   example   we   needed   to       develop   a   job   description   for   someone  to  manage  and  deliver  projects.       The   CCF   reminds   me   that   I   want   someone   who   can   follow   policy,   is   resourceful,   has   good   judgement,   can   manage   expectation,   develop   ownership,   work   collaboratively   etc   and   to   the   appropriate   level.     That   means   in   the   person   specification   I   need   to   ask   for   appropriate   experience   and   knowledge   in   those   areas,   which   we   then   test  in  the  application  and  interview.      Consortium for Participatory Arts Learning 2011


    6.  What  aspects  have  you  not  used?     Some   areas   weren’t   used   as   much,   to   be   honest   the   latter   part   of   the   framework.     The   thinking   sections,   although   still   used,   are   quite   abstract,   and   in   some   senses   covered  in  other  areas.    So  that  part  tends  to   be   used   to   check,   usually   after   seeing   a   heading   and   thinking,   “yes   I   do   need   to   include  that.”     Again   as   an   example,   analysing   and   evaluating  is  important,  but  to  some  extent   that’s   covered   in   reflecting   and   attention   to  detail.  So  in  that  sense,  how  many  more   competencies   can   I   impose   on   someone?     However   they   are   important,   so   checking   back  on  what  is  said  there  is  useful.     7.  How  are  you  using  it  now?     In   the   ways   described   in   point   3.   We   are   about   to   do   some   role   reviews   and   it   will   be  very  important  for  that.     We   are   appraising   staff   currently,   which   again   helps   guide   us.   We’re   also   recruiting   and   reviewing   freelance   artists.   It   is   very   important  in  terms  of  having  a  set  standard   across   the   sector,   with   regards   to   expectations  and  fee.       Some   artists   were   downgraded   as   we   realised   they   weren’t   of   the   standard   we   would   expect   in   certain   roles.   We   also  

trained  some  up,  so  a  good  place  to  start,  for   the   training   was   by   assessing   what   sort   of   outcomes   we   want   to   see   i.e   bringing   out   the  right  competencies.     8.   In   what   ways   are   you   hoping   to   use  the  framework  in  the  future  of   your  organisation?     We  are  finishing  a  business  plan  and  we  are   planning   to   develop   standards   and   training   for   artists,   which   this   will   influence.     We   are   planning   to   work   with   Curious   Minds,   the   Pan   Lancashire   Arts   Network   and   EMPAF   to   develop   standards   of   practice   and   believe   this  should  be  very  much  in  there.         When   working   with   outside   organisations,   NHS,   Universities,   local   authorities   and   businesses   having   this   framework   is   very   useful   –   it   shows   that   the   arts   sector   is   efficient  and  professional.                              

Case Study Two: TiPP Simon Ruding, Artistic Director   1. What's  the  name  and  nature  of   your  organisation,  in  a  nutshell?     TiPP  (The  Theatre  in  Prisons  and  Probation   Centre).   Our  mission  is  to  work  through  the  arts  with   offenders  and  related  communities  to   stimulate  growth  and  change  through   participatory  arts  projects  and  to  undertake   training  for  artists  and  Criminal  Justice   professionals.    We  have  four  main  client   groups:  offenders;  young  people  at  risk  of   (re)  offending;  staff  who  work  with  these   groups;  arts  practitioners  already  working  or   wishing  to  develop  work  with  these  groups.     We  develop  projects  to  improve  the  lives  and   life  chances  of  adults  and  young  people;   facilitate  lasting  personal  development;   provide  the  means  for  individuals  to  gain   more  control  and  improve  the  quality  of  their   lives;  enable  individuals  to  challenge  and   control  their  own  behaviours.    We  also  strive   to  improve  standards  and  the  professional   standing  of  arts  practitioners  working  in  the   CJS.                    Consortium for Participatory Arts Learning 2011



2. What  did  you  need  to  use  the   framework  for?     We  felt  that  the  sector  desperately  needed  to   have  a  shared  approach  and  language,  which       we  can  use  to  describe  our  practice.    We   believe  strongly  that  we  need  to   professionalise  the  sector  and  develop  some   form  of  quality  assurance  approach  that  was   consistent  and  developed  by  the  sector,  for   the  sector.     Because  we  have  strong  links  with  HE,  we   also  wanted  to  be  able  to  more  effectively   influence  teaching  and  vocational  training,   using  a  model  that  could  influence  the   development  and  refinement  of  new  and   existing  courses.     We  also  needed  to  review our job descriptions and make them more fit for purpose, working within a clear structure, with clear progression routes.    This  in  turn  was   important  for  a  revamped  appraisal  system,   pay  structure  and  professional  development   plan.          

3. How  did  you  choose  to  approach   the  framework?     The  easiest  “way  in”  to  the  framework  is  via   the  role  descriptors  and  the  concept  of   operational  levels  of  competency.  They   have  assisted  us  greatly  in  the  structuring  of   pay-­‐scales  and  progression  routes  for  staff   and  volunteers.         4. How  useful  was  it  for  you?     Invaluable. It has saved a considerable amount of time and provided us with a form of words that helps us objectively define and identify good practice.         The  fact  that  it  was  values  led  was  of  critical   importance  to  us  –  it  helps  emphasise  the   need  for  a  mindset  underpinning  good   participatory  practice.    It  is  not  about  ticking   boxes,  it  is  about  identifying  excellence.     Initially  it  was  used  to  review  job   descriptions  and  inform  appraisal  processes.   We  have  now  adapted  sections  of  it  for  use   within  our  formal  teaching  courses  (for   University  of  Manchester  and  the  Royal   Conservatoire  of  Scotland)  as  it  provides   clear,  objective  criteria  for  skills  

assessment.    We  also  undertook  an  exercise   mapping  the  framework  over  to  the  Youth   Justice  Competencies  framework,  which   enabled  us  to  identify  what  skills  bases  we   were  taking  into  our  work  within  youth   justice  that  complimented  or  differed  from   that  of  youth  justice  professionals.    It  is   currently  acting  as  the  benchmark  for  job   descriptions  for  new  job  roles  created  as  a   result  of  an  imminent  company  restructure.     In  addition,  aspects  of  it  have  been  adapted   into  a  project  appraisal  /  quality  assurance   system.     5.  What  were  the  key  areas  of  most   use  to  you  and  your  organisation?     The  role  descriptors  and  the  level  definitions.         6.  What  aspects  have  you  not  used?     None  –  all  have  been  applied  in  some  way.     7.  How  are  you  using  it  now?     It  is  significantly  influencing  our  current   restructuring,  informing  the  development  of   the  company  structure/hierarchy  and  the   development  of  job  descriptions.    

 Consortium for Participatory Arts Learning 2011


8.  In  what  ways  are  you  hoping  to   use  the  framework  in  the  future  of   your  organisation?     See  above.        


C-PAL How to use the framework and Case Studies