12 Tips to Make Your Employee Performance Reviews Effective

Every company does employee performance reviews to interpret how an employee is doing and what they are contributing to the company. While these can help stay on top of whether an employee is adding any value to the brand or not, they can also have a negative workplace impact if done wrong. 

Listed here are some points to make sure your performance reviews go right every time.

1. Hold Performance Reviews Regularly and Frequently

Performance reviews should be held regularly, not just once a year or two. They should be organized at least quarterly so that any issues can be raised and addressed immediately without it aggravating. It will also give employees a constant voice and channel of communication.

2. Keep Employees in The Loop About the Review

Make sure your employees know exactly what will be discussed during the review. Draw up an itinerary or agenda and circulate it among all the employees so that no one will be blindsided. 

3. Set Vision and Goals for The Employees

An employee performance review is not just for discussing how everyone is performing but also to set plans and goals for the upcoming period. Setting clear-cut goals is essential so that employees know exactly what they are working to achieve.

4. Explain to Employees Exactly How They Would Be Evaluated

Every company follows a set of rules and standards based on which they evaluate each employee. Share this with the employees. It will help them understand exactly what they will be assessed on and provide visible areas to work on. 

5. Document Employees’ Performance All Year Round

Trying to make sense of your employees’ performance in the immediately preceding period of the review can give you a skewed idea of their performance. It will encourage people to slack the rest of the year and pull up their socks right before the review. 

This will result in a misalignment between the real performance picture and the results delivered.

6. Derive 360-Degree Review

This means evaluating an employee not just based on your perception of them and their opinion of themselves but also from feedback from their colleagues, juniors, and seniors. This gives a clearer picture of how the employee is actually performing.

7. Maintain a Two-Way Conversation

Do not just load your review on an employee. Ask them if they have any opinions and views about the review, the people, and the company itself. Give them a chance to clear miscommunications and air their opinions too.

8. Take the Right Approach and Tonality

The right approach can bring even the most hostile situation under control. No matter how under-performing an employee is, keeping the narrative positive and giving them a safe space to voice their concerns helps get a clearer view of the situation. Do not only focus on the negative aspects of their delivery. Praise them for the good work too and take an encouraging stand instead of a derogatory one. 

9. Ask For Questions and Feedback

Always ask the employees how they feel about the reviews. Are they fair? Do they capture the big picture? Are there any flaws in the system? Listen with an open mind. Involving your employees in the process increases cooperation and turns your attention to details you may otherwise never have noticed.

10. Ensure a High Level of Transparency

Transparency is highly valued in any organization. Always be honest and direct with your employees and don’t waste time beating around the bush. Tell your employees where they are lacking, how they can improve, and how they can ask for resources and guidance any time they want.

11. Keep the Door Open for Assistance

Let your employees know that they will always be entertained if they need any kind of help, in terms of assistance or resources. Let them know that there is no shame in failure and that the company believes in growth and not delivery of results any way they can.

12. Leave Personal Opinions at The Door

Do not let your personal views about an employee color your review of them. Clouded judgments can result in prejudiced reports and you may end up losing a valuable employee. Bias has no place in an employee performance review.

And Lastly…

An employee performance review is helped to be in touch with how your workforce is performing and helping improve that. At the end of the day, whatever you do must ultimately add to that end and not harm it.

Viveka Batra

Viveka Batra

Human Resources Business Partner