Question (WOODWEB Member) :
How often should one have performance appraisals in an organization? Does the employee need to be shown his/her scores and should it be discussed openly?
(Business and Management Forum)
From Contributor W:
We do one review per year. If your supervisors/managers are communicating openly with their employees, the employees should already be aware of how their performance is. That makes the annual performance review only necessary for documentation purposes.
If someone needs a raise, I have a short sweet conversation thanking them for their hard work. I also explain I would like to pay them more (very true for most), but two things. One - our relatively low pay is job security, and two I need to make some money off them. This kind of honesty has always been received unusually well.
Typically, if you appraise their performance, you need to show them their numbers, and explain why they got any low numbers. Otherwise, what is the point of a performance review? But for the record, our company performance has only benefited by not having formal performance reviews. We’ve had roughly five years without reviews, then five years with reviews, and the last five without.
I've given well over 300 performance reviews in my career, in the most thorough, humane, non-threatening manner I could. The results of the reviews were undetectable by me, and believe me I looked for it. What’s better than sit-down reviews is having the manager schedule once a month or so to take two minutes to drop by an employee's station and tell him first what he could work on, if anything, and then what she likes about his work recently. If there's a pay increase, let him know it will be showing up on his next check. Guaranteed that will be more effective at coaching employees and garnering goodwill.
The real eye-opener was when I started tracking individual productivity and profitability levels, rather than assessing the team as a whole with one global set of numbers. We had a very personable and popular guy who always scored high on his reviews - who very rarely met his share of the production quota and was getting paid more than anyone else. We had another who was unpopular, and to be quite honest really can be an annoying little twit. He scored poorly on reviews and was the lowest paid employee in the company. He consistently exceeded his quotas.
Our review process now is more of a feedback session that is composed of three questions What more can the company do to help you, what more can you do to help the company, and where do you want your career here to take you. All other evaluations are an ongoing process of progressive management.