“The more things change, the more they stay the same.”
As the famous French writer Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr penned these lines in 1849, he wouldn’t have realized that it would still be relevant after 170 years.
This is especially true for many parts of the modern business scenario.
While we have seen many parts of the business environment transform over the past years, some aspects have not changed much. For instance, employee performance evaluation, in particular, has not changed much over the past many years. Most companies still rely on traditional ways to undertake monitoring team performance and evaluation.
There has been considerable improvement in the way we conduct the process, but the underlying beliefs have stayed the same. For instance, hard copy lengthy forms have been replaced by intuitive employee monitoring software for remote teams that makes evaluation seamless and easy to follow. However, there is a need to reevaluate the entire employee performance evaluation exercise from scratch rather than making incremental changes.
Here are some methods which can help you re evaluate employee performance evaluation:
1. Ask for feedback
Before you initiate another cycle of performance evaluation in the organization, it is better to step back and ask for feedback from the employees. You can ask for feedback on ways to monitor team performance and employee productivity metrics. These could be a good starting point for employees to share their opinion on what they feel about these two important points. Similarly, you can cover other critical points that impact the way employees think their work should be evaluated.
It is not necessary to implement all the feedback that you get. The critical part here is that employees realize that the organization is willing to listen to them and make changes to make the performance evaluation more effective.
The stage of collecting feedback from employees would provide many suggestions that you can consider for improving the performance evaluation process in the organization.
2. Annual reviews do not cut it
Many companies have relied on annual reviews for a very long time. While it used to work well back in the day when work used to happen over letters and typewriters. In today’s modern times, it is important to realize that annual reviews do not make much of an impact.
As employees are much more involved in business activities and work is moving at a fast pace, you should look at changing the annual reviews. One way could be to break it down into monthly or quarterly reviews, which could be a shorter version of the detailed annual reviews.
Once you break down the annual review process, you will be able to communicate well with your employees and have a better grip over business operations. At the same time, the regular reviews would provide timely feedback to the employees rather than waiting for a year to hear back from the senior management about their efforts.
3. Do not make it about the compensation
While the term performance evaluation, employee productivity metrics, or any other related term does not include words like compensation or salary, performance evaluation has been about salary for a very long time now.
One of the best ways to relook at the employee performance evaluation is to not make it about your salary. You should focus on the term itself, i.e. employee performance evaluation and create employee productivity metrics that are not focused on deciding the percentage of increment. Rather, the metrics should focus on the contribution of the employee to achieving company goals and what more can be done to help the employee grow professionally.
Once these two aspects are covered in the process as you monitor team performance, you would be able to create the right balance between professional growth and business objectives. In other words, this will be a win-win for the employee and the organization.
4. Make it a two-way conversation
Performance evaluation, even in its traditional avatar, was expected to be a collaborative effort between the employer and the employee to help each other grow. However, it turned out to be an opinion of the employer on how the employee was working towards achieving business objectives.
It was mainly because it usually turned out to be a one-way lecture about what the employer believes about how the employee has performed. Rather than understanding or hearing the views of the employee, it is often a one-way conversation.
To change the method of employee performance evaluation, one of the things that you can do is to make it a two-way conversation between the employer and the employee. Do not just share what you think about the performance of the employee but consult the employee on a variety of topics like collaboration, productivity, measurement, etc.
This approach will make it a two-way conversation and create a more collaborative effort towards achieving business objectives.
5. Share the big picture
The employee performance evaluation process should not just stop at telling the employee what you think how they did in the past period. It is equally important to share the big picture with the employee. As you expect your employees to participate in the future, it is important to make them aware of the vision that the organization may have. This can be done in two parts.
First, you should focus on the vision of the business. This would include the plans, the expected hurdles, and how you plan to overcome them. Second, you should focus on how you see the employee participating in the future of the business.
This exercise will help the employee to get a grip over what the future may look like. At the same time, it would showcase you, the employer, as the one that is transparent with its employees about the future plans.
6. Include upskilling plans
One of the most critical aspects that are usually missing in the performance evaluation plan is upskilling. We are living in times when technological advances and changing business environments make it mandatory for employees to continuously learn about the changing aspects to stay relevant.
Employees are usually aware of the need to upskill but may lack the effort to work towards it. If you can include the upskilling plans in the employee performance evaluation, it would work as a big motivator for the workforce. At the same time, the organization would immensely benefit from upskilled employees.
In case you plan to include upskilling programs in the training modules in the organization, it would be better to take feedback from the employees on what they think would be suitable for upskilling.
These are some effective methods to reevaluate employee performance evaluation. You should incorporate these steps into the performance evaluation framework.
In case you already have an employee performance evaluation framework in place, you should look at introducing incremental changes to the process so that you can create a robust process some months down the line. This way, the employees would not feel out of place, and you would end up reevaluating the entire performance evaluation system in the organization.
One of the best ways to transform the employee performance evaluation system in the organization is by using productivity tracking software for hybrid employees that enables you to understand the current state of the employees and empowers you with the possible changes that can be made along the way.