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Core Competencies

Core Competencies PicCompetencies describe the skills, knowledge and attributes necessary to perform the job.

Skills – Abilities needed to execute job duties, such as software and computer proficiency, interpersonal skills, accounting skills, or specific laboratory techniques.

Knowledge – Areas of specialty or expertise; for example, nursing, finance, employment law, or history.

Attributes – Characteristics an employee must display in the job. For instance, initiative, collegiality, resourcefulness, or professionalism.

Knowledge, Skills, and Attributes needed to succeed in a job fit into two basic categories: “Core Competencies” and “Position Specific Competencies”.

  • Core Competencies – These competencies are identified by UMass Chan leadership and should be demonstrated by all employees across the enterprise. UMass Chan Core competencies are listed below:

ACCOUNTABILITY - Accountable for measurable, high-quality, timely, and cost-effective results.

INITIATIVE - Takes prompt action to accomplish tasks and meet goals and objectives.

PROBLEM SOLVING/DECISION MAKING - Identifies and analyzes problems weighing the relevance and accuracy of available information. Generates and evaluates alternative solutions and makes effective and timely decisions.

QUANTITY/QUALITY of WORK - Pays close attention to detail. Strives to achieve accuracy and consistency in all tasks.

SERVICE ORIENTATION – Applies effective interpersonal and problem-solving skills when responding to customers.

DIVERSITY & INCLUSION - Understands how social group identities shape the setting in which we work. Demonstrates self-awareness and the ability to see other points of view, valuing diverse experiences and ways of knowing.

LEADERSHIP/MANAGEMENT (for those with supervisory responsibilities) - Sets clear priorities, goals and expectations and provides timely, constructive, and balanced feedback in holding staff members accountable. Delegates effectively and empowers team members and flexes style when faced with diverse teams and understanding and effectively manage in complex group dynamics and diverse perspectives.

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  • Position Specific Competencies – In this section, the manager identifies three to five competencies that are unique to the position and necessary for the individual to successfully accomplish the position’s functions. These competencies are specific to the job being considered and need to be demonstrated by people in those specific jobs to be successful. There is a drop-down list of position specific competencies to choose from. You should pick up to three competencies that are most critical to performing the requirements of the position.


  • Attention to Detail - Is thorough when performing work and conscientious about attending to detail.
  • Communications and Media - Knowledge of the production, communication and dissemination of information and ideas to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.
  • Computer Skills - Uses computers, software applications, databases, and automated systems to accomplish work.
  • Project Management - Knowledge of the principles, methods, or tools for developing, scheduling, coordinating, and managing projects and resources, including monitoring and inspecting costs, work, and contractor performance.

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