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Automation Competency Model

The Automation Competency Model framework was developed through a collaborative effort involving the Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and industry experts from the Automation Federation.

In July 2018, the Automation Federation convened subject matter experts and worked with ETA to update the model to reflect the most current knowledge and skills needed by today's automation professionals. The update contains a realignment of skills and knowledge requirements including automation dynamics, latest industry standards, and updates to reflect performance management and decision support for industrial automation and control systems.

The revisions also incorporate foundational health and safety skills from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's (NIOSH) Safe Skilled and Ready Workforce Program, an initiative designed to help protect America's workforce and create safe, healthy, and productive workplaces. The updated CMC competencies were reviewed and validated by subject matter experts identified by the Automation Federation. For more information, download the Summary of Changes.

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Automation Competency Model


Automation Building Blocks Pyramid

1.1 Interpersonal Skills Demonstrating the ability to work effectively with others. 1.2 Integrity Displaying accepted social and work behaviors. 1.3 Personal Acceptability Maintaining a socially acceptable demeanor. 1.4 Initiative Demonstrating a willingness to work. 1.5 Dependability and Reliability Displaying responsible behaviors at work. 1.6 Lifelong Learning  Displaying a willingness to learn and apply new knowledge and skills. 2.1 Reading Understanding written English sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents. 2.2 Writing Using standard English to compile information and prepare written reports. 2.3 Mathematics Using principles of mathematics such as algebra, geometry, and trigonometry to solve problems. 2.4 Science Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems. 2.5 Communication – Listening and Speaking Giving full attention to what others are saying and speaking in English well enough to be understood by others. 2.6 Critical and Analytic Thinking Using logic, reasoning, and analysis to address problems. 2.7 Basic Computer Skills Using a computer and related applications to input and retrieve information. 3.1 Business Fundamentals Knowledge of basic business principles, trends, and economics. 3.2 Teamwork Working cooperatively with others to complete work assignments. 3.3 Adaptability and Flexibility Being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace. 3.4 Marketing and Customer Focus Actively looking for ways to identify market demands and meet the customer, client, or stakeholder need. 3.5 Scheduling and Coordinating Planning and prioritizing work to manage time effectively and accomplish assigned tasks as efficiently as possible. 3.6 Creative Thinking and Problem Solving Applying creative-thinking skills to solve problems by generating, evaluating, and implementing solutions. 3.7 Checking, Examining, and Recording Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/digital format. 3.8 Working with Tools and Technology Selecting, using, and maintaining tools and technology to facilitate work activity. 3.9 Personal Health and Safety Complying with procedures for a safe and healthy work environment. 3.10 Sustainability Meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. 4.1 Design and Development Lifecycles Analyze, design and develop solutions to monitor and control the production and delivery of goods and services. 4.2 Operations Management Design, commission, monitor, control, and improve technology that supports production and process schedules to meet customer requirements. 4.3 Maintenance, Installation, and Repair Maintain and optimize technology in support of process or manufacturing equipment and systems. 4.4 Operational Quality Assurance Ensure product and process meets quality requirements as defined by customer specifications. 4.5 Process and Equipment Health, Safety, and Environment Equipment, practices, and procedures which promote a healthy and safe work environment. 5.1 Context of Automation Systems, processes, applications, and standards supporting the design and application of automation. 5.2 Field Devices The sensing, measurement, and final control elements necessary for automation. 5.3 Control Ensuring predictable, stable, and consistent operation. 5.4 Infrastructure Design and implement the operational technology infrastructure for Automation Systems. 5.5 System Safety and Reliability Understand, design and implement safe and reliable machinery and process control and safety systems. 5.6 Industrial Automation and Control Systems (IACS) Cybersecurity The knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to understand the purpose and implement the function of cybersecurity in operational technology, including tools and systems. 5.7 Performance Management and Decision Support The knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to understand the purpose and implement the function of Data Analytics principles in operational technology, including tools and systems. Analyze and understand the results. Click here to view occupation descriptions for automation professions