News & Events calendar

July 03 2015

Developing Digital Talent – reflections on the conference

On July 1, the hottest day in London for quite some time, 150 or so attendees withstood the heat and attended “Developing Digital Talent”, the conference event focusing on SFIA and the release of version 6 of the framework.

BSMimpact were very pleased to be a supporter of the conference, with a booth in the exhibition area decked out with purple tablecloths and red Lindt chocolates to entice people to visit!

We had some great conversations with a variety of people from public and private sector organisations.  Many people understood the value of SFIA but were looking at cost effective tools and training to help implement the framework. BSMimpact’s Online SFIA Tools, which are already Version 6 ready, were of interest, particularly due to the low cost per person to conduct a self-assessment, with no further investment required.

Matthew Burrows, V6 Design Authority, presented in conjunction with Mike Chad, V6 Project Manager on what has changed in the new version.  He stated that the changes are practical, and based on what people are really doing out there in the real world.  Input to the changes came from people worldwide.  This presentation is available by clicking on the article link below.

Matthew discussed that the intention of using SFIA is to enable individuals and organisations to answer two key questions:

“What skills do we have?”, and “What skills do we need?”.

Many people struggle to answer these questions, and the beauty of the SFIA Framework is that it is relatively easy and not expensive to find the answers.  It’s flexibility means you can use the framework any way you like, and it fits into traditional or agile organisations.  The language also means it is equally usable for people in IT or HR roles.

Mike Chad brought another perspective on the introduction of “digital” skills.  He said that we all take IT for granted, and are constantly changing, improving and innovating with digital technology.  “Digital skills were important yesterday, are essential today, and all pervasive tomorrow”,

The hot topics that were considered as part of the changes in Version 6 included:

  • Digital skills
  • Cyber security
  • reduction in the use of the term “IT”
  • Information management
  • big data, agile and cloud.

To meet these “hot topics”, 7 new SFIA skills have been added, and a few existing skills have been consolidated and retired.

The new skills include:

  • DGFS: Digital forensics
  • HWDE: Hardware design
  • ITSP: IT strategy and planning
  • PENT: Penetration testing
  • PEMT: Performance management
  • PROD: Product management
  • SORC: Sourcing

The newly updated www.sfia-online.org website now contains SFIA Version 6, which is available to download free of charge for an individual…. take a look at “Get SFIA” for a list of the licensing options available.

For another perspective on the conference, take a look at author Mark Say’s article “New SFIA Framework Highlights Cyber Security” published online 1/7/2015 at UKauthority.com.