Managing Competence in Times of Change - Attitudes Towards Strategic Competence Development
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As a consequence of a constantly changing environment, organizations are required to implement rapid adjustments. Furthermore, increased focus around sustainability and new technology has led to higher- and changed requirements by the customers. To stay competitive, it is important that employees constantly possess and acquire the necessary competence. In this study we explore the development of competence among a group of workers in a manufacturing company affected by an increase of robotization and automation. We used a qualitative approach and semi-structured interview were used to collect data. The participants were both leaders and employees in the CNC-department at Aarbakke AS. Data were analysed abductively and the theoretical framework laying the foundation for the interviews consist of strategic competence management, organizational learning climate and work motivation. This study gives insight in how a world-leading manufacturing company works towards competence development, and how they can adapt central theories into a vocational education. Our findings reveal that employees’ further development of competence is self-initiated with no strategic or systematic focus. Furthermore, findings point to a divergent perception of the learning climate and motivation to learn. Some employees do not see the necessity of competence-development, this is explained by unclear future competence-requirements.