Performance appraisals are often seen as a tedious part of managing employees. Most supervisors actually dread the once a year “write” of passage; especially when they have several employees to review.
Although employee reviews are often viewed as being as exciting as getting a tooth extracted without medication, I think that most supervisors would agree that the performance appraisal process is an important employee management tool.
As a supervisor, you know that it’s crucial to be able to understand the work that your employees perform throughout the year and to be able to measure your employee’s success.
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So, how do you write a meaningful employee review that clearly and thoroughly highlights your employees’ performance and yet is not too paper and time intensive; especially if you don’t have an employee evaluation template as your guide?
An ideal performance appraisal form has several elements:
Job Responsibilities, Job Success Factors, Company or Organizational Success Factors, Goals, and Achievements.
This part of the employee evaluation process is very straight forward. It’s the part of the form that highlights your employee’s current job responsibilities.
Since job responsibilities change slightly over time; especially if your employee is taking on more job responsibility, it is important to summarize the work that your employee does on each employee evaluation form.
The best part of incorporating a job responsibilities section is that it allows you to update your employee’s job description on an annual basis.
Job Success Factors
This is the area in your employee review where you will highlight the competencies or attributes needed for your employee to be successful in their role.
The following are core attributes regardless of the type of job:
- Communication Skills
- Team Player
- Attention to Detail
- Customer Service
- Interpersonal Skills
This list is just a sampling of what might be considered core attributes or success factors.
The Job Success Factors section can be as long or short as it needs to be based on the competencies that are important to you as a supervisor, or based on the goals and mission of your company.
When writing a performance appraisal, it’s important to include job specific competencies along with core attributes or success factors.
Using the position of “Customer Service Representative as an example, it would be important to be able to add a few core competencies that are specific to this type of a role such as “Understands the product and is able to clearly explain the benefits to customers”. Or, “Answers at least 100 calls a month”.
Company/Organizational Success Factors
This is where you should list the competencies or attributes that are important for success within the company overall. This might include:
- Understands the company’s mission, vision and values
- Respectful of co-workers both within and outside of their departments
- Works across departments to get results
The goals section is the place to highlight your specific goals for your employee as well as document shared goals, or your employee’s individual goals.
The ability to grow within one’s job is essential for job satisfaction. It’s important to celebrate and reinforce your employee’s strengths by highlighting several achievements throughout the year no matter how small.
Give your employee an opportunity to share with you what they view as major achievements as part of the employee performance evaluation.
A strong performance review highlights Job Responsibilities, Job Success Factors, Company or Organizational Success Factors, Goals, and Achievements.
Lastly, you should give your employee and opportunity to contribute to their performance review.
The performance review should not be seen as a one sided discussion. Your employee should be expected to offer their viewpoints of their performance across the various success factors or competencies.
You can create your own performance appraisal template using these guidelines or take advantage of ready to use performance appraisal forms.
What is most important is that you don’t neglect giving your employees an opportunity to speak with you about your views of their performance throughout the year.
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