Do you need an HR Business Partner competency model or framework?

This is a bespoke HR Business Partner competency model we recently created for one of our clients. We used the behaviours outlined below to create a competency framework around which we created a 360 degree feedback questionnaire specifically for HR Business Partneers.

The outcome was to provide each HRBP with specific feedback on strengths and areas for development, but to also help the organisation understand where it had strengths and development needs across the whole HRBP function.

We thought this would be a great giveaway that will benefit anyone in an HR Business Partner role. Feel free to use it for your own development.

HR Business Partner competency
HR Business Partner Competency Model

Building Stakeholder Relationships

  • Is personable, approachable and confident when dealing with others
  • Proactively seeks opportunities to engage and build relationships with stakeholders in the business
  • Spends time with stakeholders to understand the challenges the business is facing
  • Actively seeks input and ideas from others to increase understanding and create better solutions
  • Uses effective questioning to ensure understanding all round
  • Draws out the unspoken concerns of others

Communication and Influencing

  • Uses compelling, logical and clear reasoning to influence others to their way of thinking
  • Is confident enough to challenge others’ views and push back where necessary
  • Ensures discussions are closed with clear understanding on all sides
  • Provides the ‘voice of reason’ in ambiguous or challenging situations
  • Tests the understanding and assumptions of stakeholders to ensure clarity around what is being discussed

Judgement and decision making

  • Quickly identifies the core issues in complex situations
  • Facilitates people with differing views to achieve consensus and commitment to decisions
  • Considers a wide range of perspectives when making decisions
  • Considers the impact and implications of a decision before taking action
  • Focusses on generating solutions rather than highlighting problems
  • Is willing to take responsibility for solving problems
  • Is prepared to make decisions where required, even where there is uncertainty
  • Is flexible in defining solutions based on stakeholder needs rather than rigidly adhering to policy

Delivering Results

  • Prioritises effectively to deliver results
  • Spends time forward planning rather than reacting at the last minute
  • Manages their time effectively to ensure daily work is achieved
  • Agrees expectations with stakeholders around deliverables
  • Focusses on the things that will add the most value
  • Takes responsibility for overcoming obstacles and achieving goals
  • Is comfortable dealing with ambiguity and complexity
  • Takes ownership for getting things done, is conscientious and delivers what they say they will do
  • Is proactive, takes the initiative to make things happen rather than waiting to be asked
  • Pays close attention to detail ensuring high quality and accuracy, but without getting bogged down in micro detail
  • Is persistent, prepared to push hard to get things done

Commercial and Strategic Focus

  • Looks beyond short term pressures to identify future trends, opportunities and threats
  • Focuses on the bigger picture rather than short term tactical issues
  • Is able to communicate a clear business case, balancing risk and reward, cost and return on investment
  • Makes the connection between business challenges and HR strategy
  • Engages stakeholders around discussing future operational plans
  • Is prepared to express their views on the business even if outside of their own functional area

Emotional Intelligence

  • Demonstrates awareness of how their own style and behaviour impacts others
  • Remains positive in challenging situations
  • Is comfortable dealing with uncertainty and doubt
  • Remains calm and composed, thinking before acting, and operating in a stable manner, even when under pressure


  • Treats people fairly and respectfully
  • Upholds clear ethical standards that are expected by the business
  • Takes a stand on issues based on what they believe is the right thing to do
  • Is comfortable admitting to having made a mistake or got it wrong

Continuous Improvement

  • Challenges others to think about better ways of doing things
  • Focusses on always looking forwards rather than preserving the status quo
  • Talks about new possibilities, options and alternatives
  • Looks for and implements best practices both from within and outside of the business
  • Encourages the sharing of best practice around the business
  • Learns quickly when faced with new situations and challenges
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