Build an Effective Performance Evaluation Program With These 3 Steps


Successful companies build and implement effective performance evaluation programs. Regular reviews allow team members to meet with managers to discuss current and future growth opportunities within the company. When employees know their thoughts are valued, your company’s reputation as a desired workplace improves. Take the time to review your existing performance evaluation program or develop one tailored to the needs of the business. Here are the three things you should include.

Establish Objectives

Early in the onboarding process, every employee should receive a description of goals based on their department and position. In addition to the objectives, team members must also understand their team objectives. While the overall objectives for each department may be the same, specific goals may vary. More experienced employees may have higher expectations than newer team members. Examples of well-defined performance objectives include:

  • Meet 90% of outbound call center metrics, including first call close or hit rate.
  • Achieve 75% of new contract acquisitions.
  • Follow safety policies as established by corporate guidelines.
  • Earn a job-related certification over the next 12 months.
  • Pass 100% of quality assurance reviews.

Stress with managers the importance of honest and professional observations. Some managers may not want to put negative information on an employment record. Others do not want to impact morale during critical times. Every manager should verify that employees meet company goals. Underperforming employees should immediately receive coaching from their manager. Effective managers want individuals to succeed. Negative feedback on a review should not surprise an employee.

Encourage Feedback

With detailed performance standards in hand, employees can proactively monitor their performance. Create a self-evaluation form and ask employees to complete and submit the form to management before the one-on-one review. Be sure to include employment data and a sample of effective self-evaluations. Most importantly, ask employees to consider their opportunities for growth within the organization. An employee may surprise you and ask to transfer to a different department. Internal promotions and lateral moves can help you develop a committed workforce.

In addition to asking questions regarding the employee performance review, ask for feedback about the management and operations of the department and company. Employees provide valuable information regarding the day-to-day functions of their jobs. Many have ideas about improving their job functions and making the company more profitable.

These sessions also allow management to discuss how the employee can help the company achieve its long-term goals. When business owners build objectives based on the company mission statement, they can achieve long-term success. The individual and team goals should support the organization’s overall objectives.

Create Schedules

One of the most critical steps is to define how frequently you require performance evaluations. Typically, managers will evaluate employees at the end of a 90-day probationary period. With this positive review, team members may be eligible for certain benefits, per your company policy. Most other companies establish annual reviews for pay increases and other benefit awards.

Managers should take the time to make sure that employees are given enough time before the review to complete their self-evaluation. Schedule one-on-one meetings at a convenient time for both the employee and the manager. For example, avoid scheduling evaluations for call center employees during peak call times. Try to avoid having these conversations over a lunch meeting.

Depending on your industry, you may find it better to implement semi-annual reviews. Mid-year reviews allow you to manage employee expectations. While most managers coach and train on an as-needed basis, a formal performance evaluation can have many additional benefits, including:

  • Adjust individual goals to align with changing corporate goals.
  • Evaluate the team member’s adherence to professional development targets.
  • Coach an employee that is not on track to meet annual goals.
  • Acknowledge an individual team member’s accomplishments.

Create an action plan based on these simple steps, and you can begin developing your employee performance evaluation program. Employees that know you value their work will be more productive and help the organization become more profitable.

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