Development Centre as a tool for development

The aim of Development Centre (DC) is to find out both the strengths of employees and their other areas for development. Thanks to that their organization will be able to better match development activities to their needs, such as trainings or coaching. They will also receive clear guidelines regarding what they should pay particular attention to in order to realize their tasks and function in the organization in a much better way. Thanks to DC the organization can notice a lot of diamonds in the rough.


Objectivised assessment

A superior doesn’t always have the possibility to observe an employee in particular situations, that’s why you’ve been invited to participate in DC research. It is worth remembering that a boss is the only person who sees an employee from their perspective only; moreover, they do it from a very specific superior-subordinate kind of perspective. Thanks to the realization of DC, apart from the opinion of a boss, we have the opinion of a few qualified assessors who are impartial as they do not know them and have nothing in common with them.


Development Centre is a process in which participants take part in special exercises, such as group discussions, case studies, analysis of documentation, role-play, test, interview, presentation.
During such tasks they are observed by assessors who determine the level of their competencies according to the criteria which they previously set together with HR. DC is most often created on the basis of a competency model in a given company.

The process of realization of Development Centre looks as follows

1. Development Centre Session:

  • Introduction for participants
  • Doing exercises
  • Lunch break
  • Doing exercises
  • Closing
  • Assessor discussion

2. Compiling reports

3. Individual feedback for participants

4. Feedback for superior and HR

6-8 participants and 3-4 assessors usually take part in one DC session which lasts around 7 hours.


  • guidelines wskazówki
  • assessment ocena
  • superior przelożony
  • subordinate podwładny
  • apart from oprócz
  • impartial bezstronny
  • to have in common mieć wspólnego
  • to take part brać udział
  • role-play scenka
  • to last trwać

Idiom of the month:

diamond in the rough


  • A person or thing with exceptional qualities or characteristics that cannot be seen from the surface.
  • Someone that has a lot of potential but first requires a lot of work.

in Polish:

  • Nieoszlifowany diament
  • Osoba posiadająca potencjał, który może wydobyć i wykorzystać dzięki odpowiedniej pracy


  • He’s a diamond in the rough—a little hard to take at times, but very smart and helpful.
  • Kate may seem shy and ordinary right now, but give her two weeks – she truly is a diamond in the rough.


After reading the text above which of the statements are true or false:

It is worth doing research of needs for development of a group of employees by means of Development Centre method.

Development Centre is one of the main tools used during the selection of employees.

During a Development Centre session assessors most often use KPIs to assess participants’ skills.

During a Development Centre session participants usually take part in presentations and group discussions.

Each participant of Development Centre should have a feedback meeting with their assessor at the end of the process.

If a company has the results of a Development Centre session about a given employee, the opinion of a boss about his subordinate becomes inessential.

In a well-conducted Development Centre session the number of assessors should be the same as or bigger than the number of participants.


Exercise – Fiona C. the HR Lady:

After reading the text above which of the statements are true or false:

The  IT team understand very well what a Development Centre session is.

Sales and Finance have their trainings outside the company premises more often than IT.

IT employees would like to have Development Centre in a big, modern sports centre.

Development Centre is going to be held for IT in 8 weeks.

Fiona tries to explain to IT the difference between the trainings they are accustomed to and the Development Centre method.

Fiona and her coworkers are people with whom IT department would love to go on an integration training.