Strategies for developing employee capability | The Oxford Review - OR Briefings

Strategies for developing employee capability

Research Briefing

Keywords: employee capability, workforce capability, organisational capability, organisation performance, strategy

One of the key issues any organisation or firm faces, no matter how large or small, is how to acquire the necessary knowledge, skills, attitudes, behaviours and thinking in order to achieve its goals. Together, these five attributes are the primary components of workforce or employee capability. Broadly, there are considered to be three overarching strategies to acquire the necessary capabilities:

  1. Buying in the capability
  2. Developing it internally
  3. A mixture of both buying and developing capability

The vast majority of organisations opt for the third strategy whereby they recruit against specified capabilities and then have internal processes for fine tuning and customising those capabilities.

Regardless of which strategy an organisational firm uses, workforce capability is a primary direct and indirect predictor of organisational performance and overall capability.

A new (2019) study has looked at the primary strategies that non-profit organisations use for workforce capability development. The study is of particular interest because non-profit organisations frequently lack the resources of commercial organisations and, as such, have frequently been found to be more innovative in their approach to capability development which other organisations can capitalise on.

This research briefing is essential reading for anyone involved in learning and development or HR.

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