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Career Development

Career Development

The career development objective is to produce better employees and maximizing employee potential. DOE Leadership & Career Development Programs can help provide employees with the skills and tools they need to advance in their career.  There are 3 instruments that will aid employees through this process:  Career Paths, Competency Development, and Skills Assessments & Gap Analysis.

Career Paths

The employee career path is instrumental in helping organizations and individuals plan for short and long-term development activities. These paths will define the core technical competencies that are mission critical for successful performance at DOE, and each competency description includes a list of practical behaviors that demonstrate application of those competencies.

Competency Development

The Department-wide strategic workforce development initiative requires the creation of standardized competency models for all DOE occupations. These models are used to:

  • Help employees explore career opportunities
  • Develop competencies and skills that enhance DOE's ability to achieve its mission
  • Further individual career aspirations
  • Improve the Department's ability to identify and address skills gaps through enhanced workforce development and create strategies to recruit and retain a highly skilled workforce.

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) defines a competency as a measurable pattern of knowledge, skills, abilities, behaviors, and other characteristics that are needed to perform work roles or occupational functions successfully. Competencies are developed, attained, and sustained through training, rotational and developmental assignments, experience (both professional and personal), education, and self development. Attainment of a certain level of competency is assed based on demonstrated abilities to apply the competency in different situations and/or circumstances. Attainment is based not just on performance in a role over time, nor is it necessarily directly tied to grade.

Competencies are the personal and professional attributes that are critical to successful performance. Experience and training that strengthen and demonstrate the competencies will enhance an employee’s overall qualifications for career advancement. As such, a Competency-Centric Learning and Development Framework addresses the Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) talent challenges to develop a “continuously high performing competent organization” while promoting value-added, needs-driven training. A key element of the competency-centric approach is to identify competency gaps and align them with learning and development opportunities.

Skills Assessment & Gap Analysis

The competency assessment process enables organizations to assess global workforce competencies and helps ensure its current workforce has the right knowledge and skills to accomplish the mission. The DOE competency models are used to assist in the implementation of the DOE Competency Assessments. This  requires very close coordination and partnering with key stakeholders in the DOE organizations that will conduct the assessments, in order to provide guidance, oversight, and resources that ensure alignment and compliance with the DOE standard framework and technical project components.