Core Competencies


Leadership and Management

Functional Description

Ability to identify the functions and business processes necessary to operate an office, develop an operating budget, and build a professional staff to conduct the activities of the office. Ability to identify utilization and operationalize customer and student services best practices. 

Content Knowledge Requirements

Budget development, understanding of the core business processes of the unit, personnel management and development. 

Skill Requirements

Strong quantitative skills, management, leadership, and communications.

Ethical Requirements

Understanding and practice of professionalism, integrity, and best practices in the areas of management and personnel.

Expertise Levels

Entry level

Understands the basic operations of an office unit and is capable of assuming the leadership of a functioning office and continue the activities of the office.

Intermediate Level

Identifies best practices of the profession and develops plans and strategies to improve existing business processes.

Expert Level

Understands the full range of emerging technology of the profession and incorporates strategies and solutions that meet the needs and goals of the office and institution. Is viewed as a subject matter expert in the profession and shares his/ her expertise regularly with others in the profession.

How to Use Our Core Competencies

The Competencies & Proficiencies are designed to be used in a variety of ways, including:

  • Crafting professional development plans for individuals or teams
  • Self-assessment and benchmarking individual professional development
  • Drafting position descriptions and evaluating office functions

The AACRAO Competencies and Proficiencies are a living resource that will continue to evolve parallel to the demands of our professions in a dynamic higher education environment. If you would like to make a suggestion for a future version, contact us at