Individual Training Needs Assessment (ITNA) for Supervisors, Managers and Directors

The purpose of the ITNA is to help Supervisors, Division Managers and Directors develop a plan to enhance knowledge and skills pertinent to the job and assist with Work Profile revisions.


Directions for completing the ITNA

  1. Speak with your immediate supervisor and review the statements before completing the ITNA. (Your immediate supervisor will have a copy of the ITNA statements).
  2. Read each skill statement carefully and answer every statement in hard copy form.
  3. For each statement:
    1. Select the level of importance to your job.
    2. Select your level of mastery.
  4. Review the completed hard copy with your immediate supervisor. Make changes as needed.
  5. Fill out the ITNA via web-link provided using the ratings agreed upon with your immediate supervisor.
  6. Double check your answers and ensure that all sections are complete and accurate including identifying information such as name, local office/base, PeopleSoft ID, e-mails, etc.
  7. Click "Submit." Upon successful completion, you will receive a summary report of your ratings.
  8. Provide your immediate supervisor with the summary report (step 7) and final version hard copy (step 4) of the completed ITNA for your fact file.

Clarification about answering the skill assessments

There are two parts to complete this assessment. You will provide two answers to each skill set statement. First, you will select one of four answers by rating the level of importance each skill statement has to your work. Secondly, you will select one of four answers which more closely matches your level of mastery.

How do I determine the level of importance to my job?

  1. Determine whether the activities represented by the skill statement are part of your job.
  2. Determine whether the skills are “central” or “peripheral” to the job.
  3. Determine the frequency with which these skills are needed. On the ITNA score sheet you will determine a level of importance for each skill set statement, the levels being:
    • Very important to job
    • Moderately important to job
    • Minor part of job
    • Not a part of job

How do I determine my level of mastery?

  1. Determine whether knowledge and skills are needed.
  2. Determine the level of knowledge and skills needed.
  3. Review each skill set statement carefully and then select your response from the key below:
    • High
    • Medium
    • Low
    • Not at all

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the ITNA

It is the Individual Training Needs Assessment.

Why complete the ITNA?

The information you give will identify your highest priority training needs so that, together with your immediate supervisor, you can select workshops that best meet those needs.

Do all Family Case Manager Supervisors, Managers and Directors complete the ITNA?

Yes. The ITNA should be completed jointly by the Family Case Manager Supervisor, Division Manager, Director and their direct supervisor. The Family Case Manager Supervisor, Division Manager, and Director will complete the tool and their supervisor will carefully review and discuss the results with the worker.

What is the difference between the ITNA and performance evaluation?

The performance evaluation measures how well you are doing your job. In contrast, the ITNA measures the extent to which you have the knowledge and skills you need to do your job.

What does the ITNA measure?

The ITNA measures your level of mastery on specific areas of knowledge and skill, as well as the level of importance of each to your own job.

How is need computed for the ITNA?

The combination of mastery and knowledge is multiplied to estimate your need on a specific area of knowledge and skill. For instance, low importance and low mastery result in low need. Low importance and high mastery result in low need. High importance and low mastery result in high need.

Is lack of training the only reason I might not be able to do my job well?

Not necessarily. Other factors may prevent you from doing your job well. These are called non-training barriers to performance. If you should identify non-training barriers you should discuss these with your immediate supervisor in the review meeting.

What is done with the ITNA data?

The Staff Development Unit compiles data from all ITNAs to determine the highest priority training needs throughout the state and/or region. Based on those needs, workshops are developed for training schedules.

The purpose of the ITNA is to help Supervisors, Division Managers and Directors develop a plan to enhance knowledge and skills pertinent to the job and assist with Work Profile revisions.

Contact Information

Please send any additional questions to:

Valerie Decker, MSW
Project Manager
Child Welfare Training Evaluation Partnership
Indiana University School of Social Work



I. Work Management

A. Collaboration Importance Mastery
  1. Finds creative and effective ways to advocate for clients and staff.
  1. Identifies community resources that are available.
  1. Participates constructively on agency work groups and activities to improve system and service delivery.
  1. Understands how a supervisor's ability to collaborate with staff can reinforce the value of collaborative worker-client relationships.
  1. Understands the perspectives and limitations of other individuals and systems.
  1. Identifies and strengthens team building to promote a productive work group.
B. Organizational Ability Importance Mastery
  1. Balances task requirements and individual abilities (matching people and assignments).
  1. Organizes and prioritizes his/her time effectively.
  1. Organizes materials or activities to accomplish tasks efficiently.
  1. Plans, organizes and monitors case manager activities consistent with federal, state and agency policies.
  1. Sets challenging yet achievable goals for self and staff.
  1. Sets work schedules and caseload/workload standards that promote the effective use of staff and delivery of services.
C. Decisiveness and Directness Importance Mastery
  1. Gathers relevant information necessary for decision making.
  1. Evaluates employee performance to determine if a work improvement plan is effectively changing practice.
  1. Gives directions or orders based upon rules and procedures when a situation requires.
  1. Follows rules and policy when it is believed a caseworker or colleague has acted in an unethical manner.
  1. Maintains and/or explains positions when under pressure from others, confronting resistance if necessary.
  1. Recognizes when a decision is required and makes timely and reasonable decisions based on available data.
D. Team Leadership Importance Mastery
  1. Demonstrates an ability to recognize and value differing viewpoints.
  1. Knows how to plan, organize, and lead effective unit meetings.
  1. Uses a variety of leadership skills to maximize staff and unit performance.
  1. Supports a work environment that achieves the Indiana Department of Child Services' mission.
E. Communication Importance Mastery
  1. Helps staff use strengths-based communication strategies in their work with families and children.
  1. Adapts communication, behavior or approach to adjust to a situation or to the agency's larger objective.
  1. Uses strengths-based communication strategies to resolve individual and unit conflict.
  1. Understands the ways in which open and effective communication and regular feedback are essential to the successful functioning of the unit.
  1. Uses feedback from the unit to improve supervisory practice and unit outcomes.
  1. Uses strategies such as active listening and dialogue to promote constructive communication and mutual understanding.
  1. Responds to conflict in a manner that supports growth and constructive change.

II. Interpersonal Knowledge/Skills

F. Judgement and Critical Thinking Importance Mastery
  1. Appropriately incorporates past experience to guide analysis and practice.
  1. Balances short- and long-term implications when making decisions.
  1. Maintains objectivity in handling difficult issues, events, or decisions.
  1. Models and guides caseworkers in using critical thinking skills when making decisions about risk and safety issues for abused and/or neglected children.
  1. Sets priorities for tasks in order of importance.
G. Interpersonal Understanding Importance Mastery
  1. Acknowledges the strengths, needs, challenges, and feelings of others.
  1. Identifies unresolved conflict that impacts the working environment.
  1. Encourages staff to acknowledge and constructively address unresolved conflicts.
  1. Responds appropriately and professionally to changing environmental and interpersonal dynamics.
  1. Recognizes emotion-laden issues or situations that interfere with clients and professional peers.
  1. Understands and values different styles of perceiving, learning, communicating, and operating.
  1. Understands the personal, interpersonal, and organizational dynamics that maintain conflict.
  1. Understands how individual and cultural differences in work styles, expectations and communication styles can create conflict.
H. Teamwork and Cooperation Importance Mastery
  1. Identifies when a lack of coordination and integration is a factor in the agency's failure to achieve desired goals.
  1. Keeps people informed and up-to-date about activities, sharing all relevant or useful information that affects the group.
  1. Knows the characteristics of effective teams and work groups.
  1. Shows the group process skills needed to get diverse groups of people to work together effectively to achieve a common goal.
  1. Solicits data, information, ideas and opinions for specific decisions and plans.
  1. Understands the value of involving unit members in decisions about their own and the unit's work.
  1. Uses the formation of team development to facilitate effective meetings.

III. Self-management Skills

I. Self-Responsibility Importance Mastery
  1. Clarifies personal values and carries out plans for professional development to meet client and agency needs.
  1. Describes and evaluates own performance in terms that reflect recognition of personal strengths and challenges.
  1. Understands the supervisor's ongoing responsibility to plan, implement, and monitor completion of unit objectives.
  1. Models cultural competence and ethical conduct with staff, colleagues, clients, and community partners.
J. Organizational Commitment Importance Mastery
  1. Adjusts work-related priorities to meet staff needs while maintaining focus on agency goals.
  1. Knows the elements of the practice model and core conditions and the impact they have on all agency and casework practices.
  1. Shows ability to communicate a clear vision, motivation and commitment to the safety and well-being of children.

IV. Technical Knowledge

K. Organizational Leadership Importance Mastery
  1. Advocates for changes at the administrative and policy level to increase organizational support for learning and skill mastery.
  1. Understands the inter-relationships among agency mission, unit goals and objectives, policies, procedures, work activities and outcomes.
  1. Demonstrates knowledge regarding the role of power and authority in working with staff.
  1. Demonstrates knowledge regarding the dynamics of organization change in working with staff.
  1. Effectively communicates with all levels of administration both internally and externally.
  1. Understands the supervisor's responsibility to ensure staff is competent to perform the duties assigned to them.
L. Program Administration Importance Mastery
  1. Demonstrates a general knowledge of the concepts of strategic, operational and long range planning.
  1. Develops and implements outcome-based performance measures.
  1. Demonstrates understanding of relevant human services history, theory, values and ethical considerations.
  1. Identifies the service needs of families and children to determine the type and scope of services to be sought from community providers.
  1. Identifies, implements and manages change initiatives.
  1. Monitors service delivery to determine whether contracted services meet clients' needs.
M. Personnel Management Importance Mastery
  1. Demonstrates the ability to participate in the hiring, selection and termination process.
  1. Can determine when termination of employment is necessary and follow agency personnel procedures to do so.
  1. Has knowledge of and can access personnel laws, rules and regulations.
  1. Demonstrates knowledge of and can access Affirmative Action guidelines and Civil Service requirements.
  1. Manages the employee appraisal process and uses the work profile to assess staff performance.
  1. Identifies and carries out plans for professional development goals specific to individual staff needs.
  1. Understands the work place dynamics and work environments that can contribute to job dissatisfaction and failure to meet performance expectations.
  1. Identifies underlying needs contributing to challenging behaviors and designs strategies to address these needs.
  1. Designs and implements work improvement plans that appropriately address identified underlying needs.
  1. Applies progressive discipline that appropriately address identified underlying needs.
N. Leadership Development Importance Mastery
  1. Models leadership skills and behaviors within the context of daily supervision or management activities.
  1. Knows on-the-job learning activities that can support and enhance formal leadership development training.
  1. Helps staff members explore their personal qualifications, motivation, interest, and readiness to pursue leadership development.
  1. Establishes and supports a learning environment that encourages staff to develop their leadership potential.
  1. Identifies staff to potentially fill leadership positions in the agency.
  1. Engages potential leaders in a coaching and/or mentoring relationship to enable them to master leadership skills over time.
  1. Provides targeted feedback to staff to help them incorporate leadership behaviors and strategies into their jobs.
  1. Understands the potential organizational barriers that can create disincentives for staff to function as leaders in the agency.
  1. Manages emotion-laden issues or situations that interfere with clients and professional peers appropriately.
O. Educational Supervision Importance Mastery
  1. Assists staff with transferring knowledge and skills learned through training to their jobs.
  1. Keeps abreast and informs staff of the ongoing changes in the child welfare profession.
  1. Understands factors that motivate performance and can use this information to assist staff to improve job performance.
  1. Knows the factors that promote or prohibit the successful transfer of newly acquired skills from training to the job.
  1. Completes and develops performance appraisals and work improvement plans with individual staff members.
  1. Creates and sustains a positive and constructive learning environment in the organization.
  1. Uses principles of adult learning theory with staff.
  1. Develops and communicates specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-sensitive performance expectations for staff.
  1. Facilitates learning of individual and team staff members.
  1. Identifies educational and developmental needs of individual staff members.
  1. Provides coaching in specific skills in which staff need further development.
P. Casework Supervision Importance Mastery
  1. Assesses caseworker's use of child and family team meetings.
  1. Demonstrates ability to effectively manage case assignments, case coverage and service delivery to clients via direct caseworker supervision.
  1. Guides caseworkers in recognizing culturally based parenting practices that can be potentially misconstrued as abuse or neglect.
  1. Helps caseworkers identify family strengths and community resources to address poverty and environmental conditions that place children at risk of future harm.
  1. Models, guides, and monitors caseworkers in promoting client's rights of self-determination to the fullest extent possible.
  1. Structures supervisory staffings (individual and group) to review and document casework activities and caseworker performance.
  1. Knows and applies relevant federal and state statutes, rules, policies, procedures and current practice standards related to casework.
  1. Understands the importance of respecting clients' right to privacy and the agency's obligation to protect the confidentiality of information about the client.
  1. Knows statutes, rules, best practice standards, policies and procedures that apply to child sexual abuse cases.
  1. Knows statutes, rules, best practice standards, and agency policies and procedures for managing child abuse and neglect cases.
  1. Knows policies and procedures related to documenting and protecting the integrity of evidence for presentation in court.
  1. Uses available data from formal and informal reports (including outcome, practice, and performance data) to manage casework performance.
Q. Supportive Supervision Importance Mastery
  1. Creates a supportive and caring work environment to keep staff engaged and involved, and to promote high levels of investment in their work.
  1. Helps caseworkers manage and reduce job related stress.
  1. Empowers workers to identify and address emotion-laden issues or situations that interfere with the casework process.
  1. Uses various supervisory strategies to effectively manage case managers' job performance.
R. Public/Community Relations Importance Mastery
  1. Demonstrates ability to deliver presentations at public/private meetings, conferences and workshops.
  1. Effectively works with and understands various community partners.
  1. Knows how to prepare and use annual reports and other printed materials to lead regional services council meetings.
  1. Knows policies and procedures governing access to family and caregiver case information.
  1. Presents a professional image to other service providers and the community at large through use of the media, personal contacts and presentations.
  1. Builds and strengthens working relationships with community partners.

Additional Training Needs: