• The Experts

Organizational Capacity: Assess and Align Capability, Information, and Decision Nexus For Success

The alignment of how an organization’s capabilities, information support systems, and written or tribal decision-making structure fit together is essential for organizational success. Collectively, these are called the CID Nexus (Capability, Information, and Decisions)

At least three elements should be considered in reviewing an organization’s capability: current foundational skills and those to be taught to the majority of the staff; the level and degree of theoretical understanding, or knowledge, that is appropriate; and the degree to which management does or should understand varying approaches to managing in-game situations. Collectively known as Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSAs), these areas are the focus of many Workforce Development initiatives. However, KSAs and Workforce Development are not enough when considered in isolation.

A nexus between decision making, organization structure, and decision support (information management) systems. Traditional thinking is that organizational structure should be constructed around decision making, and, in turn, the organization structure should drive the decision support system and the KSAs required by staff. In small- and medium-sized organizations this is usually the case. A key takeaway is that the decision-making and organizational structure should be considered ahead of workforce evaluations.

There is also a valid argument that the types of decisions and the decision support system should drive the organization structure — if you have worked in large organizations with Oracle or SAP environments, you can probably attest to the feeling that the organization is built around the software applications. A key takeaway here is to analyze the information needs and platform of the organization before considering the workforce evaluations.

The context of the organization directly influences its type of decisions, information systems, and staff capabilities. Most organizations are frustrated in their attempts to improve these three areas in isolation. The key is the integration of both the assessments and the improvements.