Today, safety critical competencies are a priority for employers across diverse industries – from offshore oil and gas to maritime shipping and renewables. Faced with increasing legal liabilities – both legislative and contractual – employers in many high-risk operations require much more than a certificate to provide evidence that an individual is technically competent to do the job or perform a specific task.
Experienced employers also recognise that competence can diminish over time, and that there is increasing risk of competence failures in the gap between initial basic training and refresher training. This gap represents real operational risk, and in response, they recognise that a robust process for managing competence is required.
In this article, we explore how the combined expertise of the Competence Management Team at RelyOn Nutec and the Technical Team at Aberdeen Drilling School continues to offer our clients truly relevant, customisable and sustainable competence management solutions for well operations worldwide.
With decades of experience behind us, we know that a one-size-fits-all approach is impractical and unworkable. We work alongside RelyOn Nutec’s Competence Management Team and in partnership with our clients to ensure our solutions are tailored to the needs of the business and employees. We begin by assessing current levels of competence in well operations, working with clients to conduct an audit of existing competence frameworks and discussing the challenges they’re experiencing. We then work with the management team and the well control team to design a bespoke and fit-for-purpose competence management solution.
WHAT IS COMPETENCE?
Competence is defined as the ability to complete a task successfully, efficiently and safely, while following procedures. In practical terms it is a combination of skills informed by both knowledge and experience.
However, it is important that experience is not seen just as a simple measure of time in the job – it is the quality and the frequency of the experiences that a person has had during their time in the role that brings real value in terms of competence development – and this will include the frequency and quality of training experiences that they’ve had.
WHAT IS COMPETENCE ASSURANCE?
The assurance or confirmation of competence can be defined as a process designed to ensure that individuals are fully competent to safely operate equipment or efficiently perform the task they are asked to undertake. In high risk roles, the assurance of an individual’s safety critical competencies is clearly vital regardless of whether they are managers, supervisors, employees or contractors.
A robust competence assurance process will help to reduce the risks associated with people, processes and procedures during well operations. It better protects your installation or vessel and helps to maintain legal compliance, delivering an enhanced duty of care.
WHAT IS THE FIRST STEP?
The initial audit process is designed to establish whether a company can effectively measure workforce competence. Our audits are robust, thorough, and carried out by a team of highly experienced industry professionals. This provides the detail required to tailor a competence management solution to your long-term needs.
Some of the typical questions we would ask when we’re reviewing your approach to competence management include:
AN INTEGRATED COMPETENCE MANAGEMENT SOLUTION
Following an audit, we are able to propose a tailored, integrated competence management solution that measures competence through all aspects of your internal business processes – from recruitment through training and development, to performance review and ongoing competence assurance.
To illustrate a fully integrated approach to competence management, below is a brief summary of the work scope on a recent competence project for an international drilling contractor:
The outcome on this project was a robust Competence Management System, integrated with internal HR processes, providing an objective measure of workforce competence throughout each stage of each employee’s professional career.
This provided a platform for effective resource management, for defining individual career progression pathways as well as succession planning, and for realising efficiency savings through tailored training – while ensuring that the company continues to meet all regulatory compliance.
TRANSFORMING BEST PRACTICE INTO ACTION
Our tailored approach to competence management provides a unique opportunity to align competence more closely with internal processes, policies, procedures and site-specific equipment. By assessing the strengths and weaknesses of individuals and teams, and working directly to rectify shortcomings, we can help you to develop individual capability, ultimately building highly skilled and safe teams.
To talk to us about your competence management objectives, please email email@example.com.