“The King is dead. Long live the king!”
This quote refers to the heir who immediately succeeds to the throne upon the death of the preceding monarch. The phrase arose from the law of le mort saisit le vif – the transfer of sovereignty occurs instantaneously upon the moment of death of the previous monarch.
A Tale of Two Competencies
It transpires that some officers have found themselves in the position of basing their promotion interview preparations on the Policing Professional Framework (PPF), only for it to dawn on them (in interview!) that the questions being asked are clearly based on the Integrated Competency Framework (ICF). Others have provided evidence against one competency framework for part of the process (e.g. applications), but face another framework at interview.
Competencies are HOW organisations explain HOW they want people to behave. They are the knowledge, skills and abilities relevant to a particular role and are often set out in a framework.
PPF is Victorious…
The PPF is not mandatory, but is the more widely ‘preferred’ policing competency framework. The Metropolitan Police use a broadly similar framework to reflect local needs and work is apparently on-going to align the two more closely where possible.
Guidance from Skills for Justice informs forces that the PPF replaces the Integrated Competency Framework (ICF) and offers it’s support to forces for transition to the new framework. It estimates that by using the PPF, hours and hours of Police time previously spent measuring competence will be saved.
Forces may need time to transition from one framework to another (though the PPF has been around a while now) and preparation for a promotion selection process is always the responsibility of the candidate. However, fairness is something that should underpin and be seen to underpin the process. Using one framework until things are in place for a smooth ‘succession’ is one option.
Or is it?
Using two frameworks is ambiguous at best and potentially devastating at worst to those who experience the consequences of getting it wrong, in what they thought was an ‘agreed’ process.
“The King is dead, long live the King” removes doubt, clarifies immediate transition and everyone knows where they stand. It is difficult to see how using two competence frameworks benefits promotion candidates, who have little choice than to trust the organisation and the promotion system in place. Some it appears, may be being let down during the transition period. Yes, No, Maybe?
It’s not as straightforward as the succession of a monarch and there are other competing priorities. However, individuals don’t really want to be caught in any transition or overlaps; the promotion process is a stiff test as it is – and as it should be.
To be treated fairly when aspiring to promotion is not an unfair expectation. You can however take control of your preparation to help balance the odds back in your favour.
The ICF is dead… Maybe!
Kind Regards, Steve
Wherever you are on your promotion journey, www.ranksuccess.co.uk can help with guidance and support.