Three tips to optimise your performance appraisal process

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The performance appraisal process is no longer simply an investigation into whether an employee is doing their job. It’s a two-way conversation that seeks to improve, not merely manage, employee productivity. There are several reasons behind this shift. Today’s world of work has changed how a business functions and what an employee needs – and the performance appraisal process has evolved in response.

For example, employees at multinational organisations typically report to various managers and can easily work on multiple team projects around the world. This means that their review process isn’t straightforward and involves various individuals and different offices. The modern employee is also less interested in being checked up on. Instead, they want a clear personal development path, training and dedicated mentorship programmes.

Essentially, the review process is a tool to help keep key employees engaged and satisfied. The more their work fulfils them, the better they’ll work. A good performance appraisal model can facilitate this and help ensure the success of your business.

Here are three things you can do to optimise your performance appraisal process.

  1. Keep performance journals 

A typical performance appraisal process requires employees and managers to fill out lengthy forms a week or so ahead of the review. This is an ineffective use of time. Often the information is incorrect as both the reviewer and the reviewee can’t clearly recall the past six to 12 months. If a manager fails to note commendable work, an employee will immediately feel unhappy and unnoticed.

To avoid this, rather give your employees and managers access to an online performance journal that they can add to all year long. This way, critical performance related information is captured consistently. Come appraisal time, managers are better equipped to make relevant decisions about each employee’s future. The pre-appraisal form (should you still want to use one) can be kept short and to the point.

  1. Set short-term goals and monitor progress continuously

If your managers only monitor your employees’ progress towards achieving their goals once a year, the appraisal process will be time-consuming and frustrating. It also won’t be particularly constructive and your employees will very likely feel dissatisfied with the process and outcome.

A far better idea is set employees monthly or quarterly goals and check in with them at regular intervals to see how they’re progressing. If you provide your employees with ongoing guidance and support, you can help reduce their stress and improve their productivity. Taking this approach also means that your managers can fulfil their roles as mentors and take pride in leading a top-performing team.

  1. Use software to streamline the process

An electronic performance appraisal system is far more efficient than a paper-based version. It can save you time, money and significantly improve the evaluation process for your employees and the company. The benefits of moving to an electronic system include:

  • Individual appraisal forms – rather than relying on generic templates, each employee is evaluated correctly based on their specific role and goals.
  • Customised scales – create your own evaluation parameters that are relevant to your department.
  • Accurate 360-degree feedback – an electronic appraisal system can let workers know via email when they need to evaluate their peers.
  • Access to information – you can store a complete history of an employee’s appraisals in the system to be reviewed at any time. This comes in handy when considering promotions or performance bonuses.

What’s more, you can integrate your performance management technology with other software programmes that facilitate succession and talent management, training and skills management and workforce planning. It’s a winning combination that will ensure your appraisal process lives up to the expectations of the modern world.

Implement these measures to enhance your performance appraisal process. Or give us a call – we can help you optimise your appraisal process to ensure improved business efficiencies.

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