Key Features of the Core Skills for Work Developmental Framework

To participate in work successfully, everyone needs certain non-technical skills, knowledge and understandings.

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The Core Skills for Work Developmental Framework (the Framework) helps people understand at what stage of their career they might be and where they could improve. The Framework defines the core skills for work across three skill clusters and uses a developmental approach to describe these skills at five different stages of performance.

Skill Clusters and Skills Areas

The Framework categorises the skills needed to participate in work in three skill clusters:

  • navigating the world of work
  • interacting with others
  • getting the work done.

Within the three skill clusters are 10 skill areas, which are a combination of:

  • knowledge—what someone knows about in a theoretical or abstract sense
  • understanding—how they link it to their personal experience
  • skills—how they put their knowledge and understanding into practice in work settings.

Stages of performance

The Framework describes these skills at five different stages—from novice to expert:

  • stage 1: Novice performer
  • stage 2: Advanced beginner
  • stage 3: Capable performer
  • stage 4: Proficient performer
  • stage 5: Expert performer.

Performance features

Performance features describe what someone knows, understands and can do in relation to each of the 10 skill areas. The descriptors are grouped together under focus areas and span each of the five stages of performance.

The Framework presents a performance features table for each skill area.

The detailed performance features describe how an individual might behave when they are working at a particular stage of performance.

They can be used to identify what stage an individual is at in their skill development to:

  • articulate and build on an individual's current strengths
  • establish the stage at which an individual is performing, so that learning and development activities can focus on any skill gaps
  • provide a guide as to what individuals might do to develop particular skill areas
  • develop shared and realistic expectations about the appropriate stage of performance for an individual in a particular context and timeframe
  • identify the nature and degree of support required, and the types of practical experience and challenges needed for further learning and development

Influencing factors

Performance in a work situation is dependent not only on the skills and knowledge that an individual possesses, but on a range of factors that affect how well they are able to apply their skills and knowledge to perform work tasks and whether they are able to demonstrate their skills and knowledge.  For example, someone may have highly developed decision-making skills but, if they are not given the autonomy or their job role does not require them to exercise these sills, their demonstrable performance in this Skill Area may reflect a lower stage performance.