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Job Families

Page updated 15 August 2022

UCD has a Job Families Framework for Professional and Administrative roles which was developed as part of the ‘Developing Our Talent’ strand of the UCD HR strategy.  In this section you can see the range of roles and potential career paths across UCD.  You can also view information on Core and Functional competencies across the range of roles.

What is a Job Family Framework?

A Job Family Framework is a mechanism for grouping roles that are related to each other as they are carrying out work in a similar field of activity, and which focusses on the nature of the work rather than the organisational or reporting structure.

One of the many benefits of this Job Families Framework is that it can be used as a Career & Development Planning Tool. This gives visibility of the range of roles and potential career paths across UCD.  It also provides clear and consistent descriptions of the competencies required for different roles, to help plan the development and career for the 1400 Professional and Administrative staff.

There are currently nine job families under this framework.

Job Families Framework Career & Development Planning Tool - Interactive version

Competencies & Proficiency Levels

A competency is a skill or attribute that is required to carry out a role effectively. They are normally an important part of job descriptions. Core competencies apply across all Job Families but their relevance will vary between roles at different levels. In UCD, 12 Core Competencies have been identified and these are detailed below:

Building Relationships

  • Builds effective working relationships within own area and more broadly,
  • Encourages cooperation and collaboration in others.
  • Fosters partnerships to achieve results.

Communicating Effectively

  • Engages in written and oral communication that is clear, unambiguous, transparent, and consistent with UCD’s Values.
  • Conveys and shares information and ideas with others, listens carefully, clarifies understanding and considers different viewpoints.

Leading People

  • Influences others in a positive way.
  • Aligns and builds effective teams both within School/Unit/College and across UCD.
  • Works effectively with senior management and with the University’s academic and business communities.
  • Mentors, motivates and guides others towards achievement of goals.

Managing Change

  • Takes a positive approach to tackling work and embraces change.
  • Invites feedback relating to performance and deals constructively with it.
  • Fosters an environment of innovation and change.
  • Ensures appropriate stakeholder involvement and engagement in change programmes/projects.
  • Ensures change is aligned with UCD’s core Values

Managing People

  • Aligns the right work with the right people; delegates tasks according to people’s strengths and interests; Ensures people have the skills and reasonable resources to get things done.
  • Works to create a strong team. Treats everyone fairly and consistently. Shares accountability when delegating. Involves staff in setting their performance goals.
  • Provides regular and meaningful feedback that supports individuals to be successful.
  • Actively supports people in progressing their careers and achieving their potential.
  • Effectively supports performance challenges

Managing Stakeholders

  • Understands the importance of stakeholder engagement.
  • Responds to stakeholder needs and manages expectations.
  • Is sensitive to the different requirements within a diverse University setting.
  • Develops and maintains strong working relationships with internal and external stakeholders.

Organisational Awareness

  • Demonstrates an understanding of UCD in its entirety, including governance structures and regulations.
  • Demonstrates an understanding of the Higher Education Landscape in which UCD operates.

Planning & Organisation

  • Plans and organises own work effectively.•Sets clear priorities and ensures deadlines are met.
  • Organises activities, separates and combines tasks to deliver outputs according to a clear timeframe to realise School/Unit/College/University objectives.

Project Management

  • Ensures project or programme goals, purpose, and criteria for success are clearly defined at the outset.
  • Clarifies related roles and responsibilities, deliverables, milestones.
  • Builds a detailed project plan and carefully monitors progress against it.

Service Focus & Innovation

  • Understands and anticipates customer needs.
  • Acts to provide high-quality products and services to meet expectations of all internal and external stakeholders.
  • Generates a range of innovative ideas to make systems/procedures more customer friendly.

Taking Initiative

  • Makes suggestions for improvements in own work area.
  • Acts early to address and resolve problems and find solutions.
  • Is proactive in relation to own development, utilising feedback mechanisms.

Working Strategically

  • Develops a vision for the School/Unit/College/University and translates this vision into action.
  • Aligns the School/Unit/College objectives with the University’s goals and objectives.
  • Communicates UCD’s vision in ways that gains the support of others
  • Sees opportunities across different areas of activity and proactively connects the dots.

A competency is a skill or attribute that is required to carry out a role effectively. They are normally an important part of job descriptions. Functional Competencies vary between roles in a Job Family and between Job Families themselves. They are specific to each Job Family. In UCD there are 9 Job Families and each Job Family has a set of Functional Competencies outlined below:

Academic & Programme Operations and Management   

  • Business Analysis
  • Data Management
  • Operational Resilience
  • Support, Guidance and Advice
  • Technical Acumen

Communication & Marketing

  • Issue Management, Crisis and Risk Communication
  • Product Knowledge
  • Media Relations and Publicity
  • External Relations & Stakeholder Engagement
  • Communication
  • Marketing
  • Student Recruitment

Estate Operations

  • Business, Operational & Technical Acumen 
  • Compliance & Governance
  • Service Excellence
  • OperationalExcellence

Financial Management

  • Business Environment 
  • Financial Reporting 
  • Audit 
  • Taxation

Human Resources Management

  • Compensation and Benefits
  • People & Organisation Development
  • HR Information Systems
  • Staffing
  • Performance Development
  • Employee Relations
  • Pensions
  • Change Management
  • Organisation Design
  • Talent Management/ Succession Planning
  • Job Grading/ Career & Promotions Pathways
  • Employee Engagement
  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

information Technology

  • Infrastructure & Cloud
  • Networking & IT Security
  • Enterprise Architecture
  • Programming & Web Development
  • Business Analysis
  • Data Management & Business Intelligence / Analytics
  • Multimedia
  • Software support & Training
  • Educational Technology
  • Pedagogical

Legal, Governance & Compliance

  • Compliace & Governance
  • Risk Management
  • University Policies, Procedures & Practices
  • Commercial Awareness & Acumen


  • Managing & Organising Knowledge & Information
  • Collection Management &Development 
  • Information Literacy and Development 
  • Information Technology Skills 
  • Research & Contribution to the Profession

Research & Innovation Management and Administration

  • Grant Registration
  • Research Environment
  • Proposal Support
  • Technology Transfer
  • Policy and Governance
  • Post-Award Programme Coordination
  • Targeted R&I Skills

Proficiency Levels are assigned to both our Core Competencies and Functional Competencies to show progression. In UCD, 4 Proficiency Levels have been identified and these are outlined below:

Level 1 Developing understanding and capability with this competency
Level 2 Strong knowledge, understanding and application across most areas of this competency
Level 3   Strong knowledge, understanding and application across all areas of this competency and beginning to guide and support others in its development
Level 4 Expert knowledge and understanding across all areas of this competency and advanced in its broadest application. Proactive mentor capability to support others in developing their proficiency.

Printable documents

Versions of Job Family and Career Planning documents are also available download and print.

UCD Human Resources

Roebuck Offices, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
T: +353 1 716 4900 | E: hrhelpdesk@ucd.ie | Location Map(opens in a new window)