ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 Competence – Ultimate Certification Guide

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ISO 27001 Competence

In this ultimate guide to ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 Competence you will learn

  • What is ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 
  • How to implement ISO 27001 Clause 7.2

I am Stuart Barker, the ISO 27001 Ninja and author of the Ultimate ISO 27001 Toolkit.

With over 30 years industry experience I will show you what’s new, give you ISO 27001 templates, show you examples, do a walkthrough and show you how to implement it for ISO 27001 certification.

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Watch How to implement ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 Competence

What is ISO 27001 Clause 7.2?

ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 is an ISO 27001 control that requires an organisation to have people that are competent to do the work for information security.

This clause is all about people and their skills, experience and competency.

The ISO 27001 standard for ISO 27001 certification wants you to have the right people with the right skills for running ISO 27001.


ISO 27001

ISO 27001 Toolkit Business Edition

ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 Purpose

The purpose of ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 is to make sure that the people you have working on the information security management system (ISMS) have the skills, knowledge and experience to do it.

ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 Definition

The ISO 27001 Standard defines clause 7.2 as:

The organisation shall:

a) determine the necessary competence of person(s) doing work under its control that affects its information security performance;
b) ensure that these persons are competent on the basis of appropriate education, training, or experience;
c) where applicable, take actions to acquire the necessary competence, and evaluate the effectiveness of the actions taken; and
d) retain appropriate documented information as evidence of competence.

ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 Competence

ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 Requirement

The requirement for ISO 27001 Competence far out reaches just information security.

The organisation as a whole has departments that contribute to the success of the organisation that also play into an effective information security management system.

We can consider HR, legal and regulatory compliance, commercial, and Information Technology (IT) teams.

What are the ISO27001:2022 Changes to Clause 7.2?

Great news. There are no changes to ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 in the 2022 update.

There are distinct phases in the process of ISO 27001 certification. Each of those phases potentially requires a different level of skill, knowledge and experience. It is possible that this is one person but the likelihood is you are going to get specialist help for the establishment and implementation phase. It can make sense to reduce the reliance on that specialist help when it comes to maintenance and continual improvement. Only using that knowledge and expertise for training and sense checking.

ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 Implementation Guide

Which resources to use when

To implement ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 you want to choose the correct resource for the correct phase of your information security management system (ISMS) lifecycle. This will ensure you have the correct competence when you need it.

Our guide would be

ISO 27001 Establishment: use specialist resource

ISO 27001 Implementation: use specialist resource

ISO 27001 Certification: use specialist resource in combination with your own staff

ISO 27001 Maintenance: use your own staff with training and sense checking by specialist resource

ISO 27001 Continual Improvement: use your own staff with training and sense checking by specialist resource


ISO 27001 training can help you gain the skills and experience in house and is an option to consider.

ISO 27001 lead auditor training, ISO 27001 lead implementor training and associated courses are readily available to choose from. For book knowledge to the standard these are an ideal starting point. It can be problematic when it comes to actually applying the learnings though as they tend to focus heavily on the semantics of the standard rather than real world implementation and they will not cover your particular implementation.

Will they tick the box when it comes to the ISO 27001 certification? If you haven’t got specialist outside help then yes, they most definitely will.

There is a wealth of training and guidance provided as part of the ISO 27001 Toolkit for free. There are also free resources on the Internet such as this excellent YouTube Channel dedicated to ISO 27001 and showing you how to do it yourself. If we were going to start anywhere we would start with this Essential Step By Step Guide to Implementing ISO 27001.

Of course you can do ALL of it with the ISO 27001 Toolkit which includes all of the resources, step by step guides and video walkthroughs you will need with the ability to by specialist help by the hour.

Stuart - High Table - ISO27001 Ninja - 3

How to pass an audit of ISO 27001:2022 Clause 7.2

Time needed: 1 day

How to pass an audit of ISO 27001:2022 Clause 7.2

  1. Engage with trained ISO 27001 resources

    Whether you look to engage a professional such as a High Table ISO 27001 Consultant, hire someone full-time or train up internal staff on ISO 27001 lead auditor or ISO 27001 lead implementor courses you need to engage with trained and experienced resource for your ISO 27001 certification.

  2. Complete an accountability matrix

    For each of the ISO 27001 clauses AND the ISO 27001 Annex A / ISO 27002 clauses you need to allocate and record who is responsible for that clause and control.

  3. Complete a competency matrix

    For each person involved in the operation of the Information Security Management System be sure to record them in them in the competency matrix. The competency matrix allows you to identify and demonstrate that you have the required competencies to run the information security management system. It also identifies gaps that you can plan to address.

  4. Implement training and awareness

    Implement and effective process of training and awareness that directly meets the needs of the organisation and the risk the organisation faces.

How do you demonstrate compliance to ISO 27001 clause 7.2?

To comply with ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 require you need to document, record and evidence competence. But in what? And how?

The most straightforward way is to create a competency matrix, populate it and keep it up to date.

We provide an excellent overview of the competency matrix and how to create one as well as a video guide in our blog: ISO 27001 Competence Matrix Ultimate Guide with Template

There is no set level to what level of competence that you require. It is dependant on the needs of the business. You can easily argue what ever level you decide based on the fact that you have risk assessed it and determined it based on risk and business need.

Of course the simplest way is to demonstrate training and certifications for staff.

If this is cost prohibitive then the use of outsourced third parties can also be an answer.

Depending on the size of the business it is unlikely you will have in house legal counsel. So how do you demonstrate that you have competence? Well you probably outsource your legal requirements to a third party law firm. As long as you have a contract and can evidence it then you can demonstrate your competence compliance by simply outsourcing the function. GDPR and Data Protection outside of your grasp for a full time employee? Of course it is. So outsource it and engage a third party company, have a contract in place and record that in your competency matrix.

It isn’t complicated or hard and it doesn’t have to be costly.

How to build your own competence matrix

This particular video on How to Build a Competency Matrix has been viewed over 10,000 times and in it we show you how to build the competency matrix from scratch if you don’t want to download and use the ISO 27001 Competence Matrix Template.

ISO 27001 Templates

ISO 27001 templates are a great way to implement your information security management system. Whilst an ISO 27001 Toolkit can save you up to 30x in consulting fees and allow you to deliver up to 10x faster these individual templates help meet the specific requirements of ISO 27001 clause 7.2

ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 FAQ

What is ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 Competence ?

The ISO 27001 standard requires an organisation to have people that are competent to do the work for information security. Simple.

How do I evidence I meet the requirement of ISO 27001 Clause 7.2?

The best way is to record the skills of your resources in a Competency Matrix.

Can you show me how to build an ISO 27001 competence matrix?

Yes, in this video we show you step by step how to build your own ISO 27001 competence matrix from scratch in around 15 minutes:

Where can I download ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 templates?

You can download ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 templates in the ISO 27001 Toolkit.

ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 example?

An example of ISO 27001 Clause 7.2 can be found in the ISO 27001 Toolkit.

Can I use external resource for ISO 27001 Clause 7.2?

Yes. Many companies seek the help of qualified, experienced third party suppliers to help with ISO 27001

Can I train my staff to meet the requirements of ISO 27001 Clause 7.2?

Yes, there are many reputable training courses for ISO 27001 Lead Auditor and ISO 27001 Lead Implementor.

ISO 27001 Toolkit Business Edition

Do It Yourself ISO 27001

ISO 27001:2022 requirements

Organisational Controls - A5

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.1 Policies for information security

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.2 Information Security Roles and Responsibilities

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.3 Segregation of duties

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.4 Management responsibilities

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.5 Contact with authorities

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.6 Contact with special interest groups

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.7 Threat intelligence – new

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.8 Information security in project management

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.9 Inventory of information and other associated assets – change

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.10 Acceptable use of information and other associated assets – change

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.11 Return of assets

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.11 Return of assets

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.13 Labelling of information

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.14 Information transfer

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.15 Access control

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.16 Identity management

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.17 Authentication information – new

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.18 Access rights – change

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.19 Information security in supplier relationships

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.20 Addressing information security within supplier agreements

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.21 Managing information security in the ICT supply chain – new

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.22 Monitoring, review and change management of supplier services – change

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.23 Information security for use of cloud services – new

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.24 Information security incident management planning and preparation – change

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.25 Assessment and decision on information security events 

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.26 Response to information security incidents

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.27 Learning from information security incidents

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.28 Collection of evidence

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.29 Information security during disruption – change

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.31 Identification of legal, statutory, regulatory and contractual requirements

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.32 Intellectual property rights

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.33 Protection of records

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.34 Privacy and protection of PII

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.35 Independent review of information security

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.36 Compliance with policies and standards for information security

ISO 27001 Annex A 5.37 Documented operating procedures 

Technology Controls - A8

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.1 User Endpoint Devices

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.2 Privileged Access Rights

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.3 Information Access Restriction

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.4 Access To Source Code

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.5 Secure Authentication

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.6 Capacity Management

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.7 Protection Against Malware

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.8 Management of Technical Vulnerabilities

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.9 Configuration Management 

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.10 Information Deletion

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.11 Data Masking

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.12 Data Leakage Prevention

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.13 Information Backup

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.14 Redundancy of Information Processing Facilities

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.15 Logging

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.16 Monitoring Activities

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.17 Clock Synchronisation

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.18 Use of Privileged Utility Programs

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.19 Installation of Software on Operational Systems

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.20 Network Security

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.21 Security of Network Services

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.22 Segregation of Networks

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.23 Web Filtering

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.24 Use of CryptographyISO27001 Annex A 8.25 Secure Development Life Cycle

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.26 Application Security Requirements

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.27 Secure Systems Architecture and Engineering Principles

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.28 Secure Coding

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.29 Security Testing in Development and Acceptance

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.30 Outsourced Development

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.31 Separation of Development, Test and Production Environments

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.32 Change Management

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.33 Test Information

ISO 27001 Annex A 8.34 Protection of information systems during audit testing