A company-wide annual performance review, also referred to as performance appraisal or performance evaluation, has been a common practice over the years for many organizations. Even though many business blogs and books consider performance reviews a thing of the past, there are enough indications to suggest that performance reviews are here to stay, and we are here to guide you through them!
Understanding performance reviews
A performance review is a formal evaluation by a manager to assess an employee’s job performance, identify strengths and weaknesses, and offer guidance for future tasks. Performance reviews should help improve and maintain a company’s work standard. Still, there is no denying that the old tradition of an annual review is a time-consuming and tedious task, so many organizations are starting to move away from annual performance reviews and adopt more frequent reviewing systems, either quarterly, monthly or even weekly.
Companies now realize the importance of gathering more data and feedback from employees and keeping them informed about their job performance and expectations. However, it is essential to note that employers need to choose relevant criteria while conducting performance reviews and not evaluate based on their instincts. Whether triumphs or catastrophes, reviewing performance only at extremes is a common mistake employers make, and they need to incorporate a regular feedback cycle in their management strategies. Following a standard procedure for employee evaluation with relevant criteria makes it easy for employers to identify the shortcomings in the workforce. This can be the cue for managers to deploy their Performance Improvement Plan, which can be an effective way to help an employee who is underperforming in the workplace.
The value proposition of performance reviews
Employers in every industry and every size are waking up to the necessity of strategy, including for HR, but they’re neglecting one of their most powerful tools. When done well, performance reviews give employers the data to understand their workforce’s capabilities and shortcomings, giving managers clear guidance for daily task allocation and long-term planning. Moreover, reviews provide employees with a clear understanding of their role and the expectations for their performance. They help instill a sense of accountability in the employees and promote employee engagement. Many companies are now adopting a more casual setup, like one-on-one meetings or weekly check-ins with managers to monitor and guide employees more efficiently.
The old way of doing performance reviews is justly rejected because it feels repetitive and pointless. Companies reviewed performance without understanding the reason why performance needs to be reviewed. Therefore, many organizations failed to realize the full potential of the process, and by extension, their employees. In an age of analytics and data-driven decisions, understanding performance is a critical source of information that no organization should overlook.
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