Page 1


Addressing Skill Gaps Using

The Individual Development Plan (IDP) Process The War for Talent It’s no secret, particularly in the IT sector, that there is a high demand for skilled talent, especially given the pace of change leading to increasing demand in newer technologies. In emerging topics such as cyber security, there is an estimated worldwide shortage of 2 million trained cyber security professionals this year alone. While there is a lot of conflicting data on how big the workforce shortage is, developing critical skills is imperative to the success of any organization no matter how you slice it. One solution to help address skill gaps is to follow through with practical ways to realize expected outcomes. Through on-the-job project assignments, mentoring, and formalized training and certification plans, the opportunity to make an IDP program a win-win is mission-critical — for the employee AND the organization.


Shortage of 2,000,000 trained cyber security professionals by 2017. – Network World

85 Million

By 2020 there will be a global shortfall of 85 million high- and middle-skilled workers. – ATD State of Industry Report November 2014

As an Individual Looking to Advance The employee should take charge of creating an IDP, starting with, “Where do I want to be in terms of my knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) and my position five years from now?” By having an employee answer this question, and develop and document a set of actions to advance year by year, the manager and employee can have an in-depth discussion about the employee and their role in the organization moving forward.

‘War for Talent’

The pending retirement of baby boomer leaders, coupled with a shortage of high-skilled workers, has executives worried about their talent pipelines. – Harvard Business Review May 2015

Continued on next page

1-800-843-8733 •

SOLUTION BRIEF: Addressing Skill Gaps Using the IDP Process (continued)

As an Organization Looking to Recruit and Retain By incorporating IDPs as part of the performance review process, an organization can provide a powerful motivator for professional development, and help align the organization’s and individual’s objectives so they are mutually supportive.


“A Goal Without A Plan Is Just A Wish” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery

What to Watch for That Could Derail Successful Use of IDPs: • Fear of losing good talent after you invest in development, so you delay or don’t act on agreements committed to in the IDP

Short Range Goals (1-2 Years): 1.! 2.! 3.!

Top 3 Strengths: 1.! 2.! 3.!

Long Range Goals (2-5+ Years): 1.! 2.! 3.!

Top 3 Development Needs: 1.! 2.! 3.!

Targeted Competency/Skills

• Allowing other priorities to constantly delay actions toward development

Individual Development Plan

Name: Date: Current Position:

Developmental Activity or Training

Outcome Desired

Intended Completion Date/Cost

Actual Completion Date/Cost


• Not making it a point to revisit / adjust the IDP, as priorities and strategies change • Not maintaining transparency of the organization’s commitment to investing in skill development — or perceptions become reality and you’ll experience the very result you’re trying to avoid — talent walking out the door.

Access a sample IDP template and other resources at: Learning Tree can develop customized learning paths aligned to your Individual Development Plans to help you achieve your goals. Contact us today. Sources:

1-800-843-8733 •

Addressing Skill Gaps Using The Individual Development Plan (IDP) Process  

The Individual Development Plan (IDP) process can help you address skill gaps by giving you the framework to follow through with practical w...

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you