Performance appraisals is a review in which the employee's job performance is formally evaluated. Note that it is not an informal evaluation--you're not coaching people as you go along, although that is a different type of appraisal or evaluation.
Performance appraisals are often done by HR managers, who are typically the ones responsible for making sure these performance appraisals get done for the people who report to that HR manager.
Performance appraisals are often based on goals, which include the personal goals of the person being evaluated, as well as the goals of the company involved. They are often directly tied to actions like raises and promotions. Conversely, they may also lead to firings and demotions, depending on the results of that appraisal and how well an employee is doing based on those goals, both personal and those set by the company.
Now, HR will often work with other managers who have to do these appraisals for their direct reports in order to make sure that they're fair and meeting the goals that are set by the company.
Performance appraisals will carry both objective and judgmental criteria.
With performance appraisals, it is important to be careful of certain appraisal errors.
The employee's role in an appraisal is to make sure that they self-evaluate throughout the performance period. If you, as an employee, are getting rated once a year, you'll need to self-evaluate several times during the year, based on the goals you've been given for that particular performance period.
In addition, the manager may need to observe the employee in order to see if they're hitting their targets. This is a great opportunity for the manager and the employee to work together in an informal way in order to make sure they're reaching the goals set for the appraisal.
|Employee Participation in the Appraisal System|
|Employees receive constructive feedback--not just from the formal appraisal, but also throughout the year.||The appraisal process takes time, and employees don't always have all the time they need when they're on a deadline or trying to meet certain goals for the company.|
|There is a recognition of work that's done, or in some cases, not done.||It requires the organization to plan how to self-evaluate.|
|Employees have the opportunity to express their thoughts and feelings about their role in the system.||There is stress related to being evaluated. If you've ever taken a test, there's likely stress involved. Are you going to do well? Will you know all the questions? Well, it's the same thing when you're getting evaluated, even informally.|
|It creates an opportunity for future development for employees because they can identify those things that they need to work on, or those tasks that they're doing well at, but could improve upon.||Often, there is a lack of objectivity in numeric evaluation. It's important to remove the biases we set for ourselves--because we all think we're great--and make sure we're coming from an objective standpoint to get the most out of that formal or informal appraisal.|
One of the ways to help employees improve as a result of performance appraisals is through training. Training is typically driven by the results of those performance appraisals:
Then, based on the results of these evaluations, the company can provide training to make that employee more valuable, and ultimately more successful. It's important that training is done through this particular lens of understanding the needs of the organization as revealed through the appraisals. The way these training programs are designed and driven, ultimately, is through an understanding of the company's needs, based on the feedback of the performance appraisals.
Training can occur on all different levels, and there are different types of training.
|Types of Training||Description|
|On-the-job training||Any particular training that is done on-site. It includes on-site activities in the classroom, for instance, or having someone take you aside and show you how to perform an action, like using the forklift, wrapping a package properly, or how to properly develop a spreadsheet and graph that meets the company's expectations of quality. These are all examples of training that happens on the job.|
|Off-the-job training||Any off-site activity that takes place outside of the work environment. This could involve the company sending an employee to a conference, or to particular seminars or classes on an area that relates to their job. It could also be paying for a college class to help them understand a certain aspect of the job better, such as learning how to use a Microsoft Office Suite product like Word, Excel, or PowerPoint, for instance.|
Training techniques that are used include practices such as:
Source: adapted from sophia instructor james howard