Individual development planning will lead you down the road to success.
What is an Individual Development Plan (IDP)? An IDP is a written schedule or plan which describes your immediate and long-term goals. It is a tool to help you organize your plans for training and development in order to learn new skills, acquire additional knowledge or sharpen current expertise.
As a minimum, once a year within 30 days of your annual performance evaluation, you and your supervisor must meet to discuss your goals and accomplishments and develop an IDP. This meeting gives you both the opportunity to set objectives and plan learning experiences that will support them.
What makes a goal? A goal is something pertinent to your work and your career that you see worthwhile to pursue:
A goal should be realistic, should require some work and challenge, but should not be set so high as to be unreachable.
How to identify KSAs? A good way to identify the knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) of your present position is to look at your position description and performance plan. Write down the official duties of your current position or new assignment and select a particular duty or duties you need to develop or acquire.
The KSAs give a clear outline for planning your training and development. Once you have identified your KSAs, you will be in a position to decide on what training courses are needed and/or alternative methods necessary to acquire them.
It is important to describe your developmental objectives on the IDP form (ARS-48) in the column labeled "Performance Related Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities."
The 3 step process:
We often think in terms of formal training courses. However, we learn best when training includes a variety of learning experiences. Consider the investment of time and money required for each experience and pursue other alternatives. A list of formal training opportunities and developmental work experiences are provided below.
As you complete each training activity, discuss it with your supervisor and address how it has applied to your job. The IDP is a living document not a contract. Modifications can and will be made based on assignment priorities, budget or time constraints, and your desire for personal growth.
On-the-job training (OJT):
For additional information about training and development visit our web site: http://www.afm.ars.usda.gov/hrd/empdev/
Last Updated: 08/26/2002