Performance reviews or employee evaluations are essential in giving feedback and determining areas of improvement and excellence for both the employer and employee.
These evaluations are generally done annually and are often directly connected with employee compensation and promotions.
Ideally, the manager or supervisor performing the evaluation needs to keep notes on the subordinate’s performance throughout the year so that they may cite specific examples of where an employee is exceeding and where they need to improve.
Performance evaluation keeps communication open and is a chance for managers and employees to review what has been done in the recent past and set future goals.
There’s no single template to evaluate and mark an employee’s job achievement, and there is no one-size-fits all formula. A lot depends on how the evaluations are conducted. They are a good method to weed out bad performers and inspire others to do better.
Make it a two-way evaluation
Writing a review is not easy. A review by a manager sans any input from the one reviewed can be a one-sided street. It is about consistency too. If there are too many discrepancies between the manager and the employee’s review, then some interference from the management is needed.
The Human Resource department can also get an idea of expectations of the employee —promotions, leaves, bonuses etc.
To start with, if you are aware that a performance review is on the horizon, then keeping notes on what has been done and achieved helps. It is a kind of prep on what all to include.
Create a list of the work handled, goals met, outcomes and accomplishments. Include what brought value for the company.
Do a data analysis. Numbers are concrete they give and instant valuation. Match the performance alignment with that of the team.
Give timely Feedback
Don’t try to sugar-coat feedback. Be clear, honest, and straight-forward about the lacuna and what needs to be done to improve.
Chalk out future possibilities, and make clear what role you can play in bringing about those to fruition. Don’t make false promises, if you are not able to see them through.
Avoid making comparisons between employees. This can breed unhealthy competition and resentment.
If an employee has some questions about the performance matrix, or any other about prospects etc, do not give a vague answer. Say that you do not know, and will definitely get back.
Giving a fake answer or just brushing off concerns leaves a bad impression.
An organized and consistent process for evaluating employees is compulsory. This makes the process fairer and can help your company avoid or defend against discrimination suits in the future.
A company-specific performance matrix is useful. It gives measurable goals to fulfil, helps employees know where they stand, and helps you gauge their performance accurately.
Some Dos and Don’ts of the evaluation process:
- An updated log of employee performance with dates and incidents and a short description of the events is handy when doing a review.
- Give a fair chance to employees to improve.
- Document your evaluations.
- In nearly all states, employees work at will, meaning employers can terminate without a reason. Don’t undo this by promising long-term employment.
- Be very aware of all the rules and regulations concerning gender, equality and diversity. Discrimination claims crop up when an employer is perceived as treating people differently in the same situations.
- Have a clear and open grievance reddressal chain where employees can take their concerns about potential or perceived legal violations or wage and hour issues.