Last year, the Learning & Performance Institute launched its Capability Map. This is a free online tool, to help learning professionals map their skills against a framework which uses a 'common language'
We're impressed with both the tool and the thinking behind it - it took over a year's work to create the underlying framework. Of course, there are other frameworks. So why use this one?
It's built for today
Well, for starters, it's built for today's learning teams - it uses up-to-date terminology and isn't based on an out-of-date learning model. So, it's relevant. It's also commercially focused - which is to say, it has a practical outlook and isn't head-in-the-sand theoretical.
While the Capability Map has clearly been created by specialists, it's not steeped in jargon. It's easy to use and easy for others to understand the results.
It's a powerful ally
Let's face it. There's a problem when applying for a job. Your CV is important, but a CV can be any format. A CV is also a tool for looking at your overall career history, not your skills now - and where you do talk about current skills, you'll not be using a common language. The LPI's Capability Framework addresses these shortcomings and is a powerful tool to use alongside your CV and job application.
- It presents your skills in a structured way.
- It lets employers easily compare your skills with those needed for the role.
- It uses language that is easy to understand.
Ah yes, one of everyone's favourite words: free. The tool costs nothing to use. Your information is stored securely online and can be updated at any time. When you need a copy of your competency profile, it can be downloaded as a PDF file.
It shows you mean business
There's no doubt about it in our minds. Those learning professionals who supply a competency profile as well as a CV will disadvantage those who don't. It shows you are self-aware about your skills and objective about how these are presented.
It's a smart investment in time
True, it does take a bit of time to fill in the Capability Map, especially the first time you use it. How long it takes depends on your role, how aware you are of the skills in the framework and other factors. But it doesn't take that long - and once it's done, it's done. It's time well-spent. We recommend logging in, looking over the tool and reviewing its questions - and then setting aside the time needed to complete it.
Surely everyone can just cheat?
It's a self-assessment, so that is a possibility - in the same way that you can big yourself up on your CV. However, the Capability Map uses objective language, so you wouldn't be simply 'presenting yourself in a favourable light', you'd be materially lying. In our experience, people tend to get caught out pretty quickly when this is the case, so it's a pointless thing to do. There's nothing more embarrassing in an interview (or the first week of a job) to be rumbled by a tough question. Don't do it, kids.
It's now what Blue Eskimo does
We're making the Capability Map a core part of our recruitment process. We're recommending that both employers and candidates make use of it, because it provides a clear way for skills to be understood. Candidates don't have to supply a competency profile, but we recommend that they do. We also recommend that employers request one.
Get yourself along to the LPI Capability Map website and create a free login. Then explore the tool a little before filling it in with your details. It's not difficult to do - it's simply a question of reviewing the options and clicking in the right boxes. Good luck!