Appraisals are so time-consuming – why should I bother?
Doing appraisals badly is easy. Anyone can do it! Doing them well, on the other hand, takes time, commitment, honesty and an understanding of how to engage and motivate people. However, implementing best practice for your appraisals process will be a huge benefit to you and your employees. One critical factor that many managers forget is that an employee should not hear important feedback – either negative or positive – for the first time during the appraisal itself. Regular job discussions should be undertaken throughout the year. This will help both parties feel they are being listened to and will help you to get maximum benefit from your appraisal process.
In this blog post, we’ll explore some of the reasons why good appraisals are invaluable to your business. These include:
Showing your team that they are valued
We all need to feel that we are valued in our work. The fact that you are taking quality time out of your busy schedule to individually dedicate to your employees helps to demonstrate this. The process is a great opportunity to give sincere feedback to them, which in turn should act as a catalyst for them working smarter and better.
We all appreciate praise and recognition and the appraisal is a great opportunity for this and to let employees know that you are aware of the good work they are doing and appreciate it. This in turn should help with retention of employees. Your advice will be valued in terms of feedback and will help them focus on what they can do to develop themselves.
Setting new goals
The most productive employees are those that are driven and achieve their goals. Setting targets that are achievable during the appraisal helps to motivate employees and gives them an important sense of achievement when they hit them.
Goals and targets can be assessed and reviewed during the appraisal to ensure that they are realistic and relevant and in line with market conditions as applicable. They need to be achievable but at the same time stretch the employee to help develop them and give that sense of achievement once successfully accomplished.
The appraisal offers a dedicated opportunity to review the personal development of your employees. Development goals can be set and committed to paper, which should help with current performance, as well as future development. This in turn should help to motivate the employee and give a sense of direction. As well as looking at enhancing skills, you can also use the discussion to identify skill gaps and provide appropriate training for these. Letting your team know that you’re thinking about their development will help instil in them an ethos of ambition, in turn driving the business on to be more productive and aspirational.
A large part of the talent management process is about developing and retaining high performance employees and mapping out their career path in the business. The appraisals system plays a large part in developing talented individuals by offering guidance and the training needed to develop skills for promotion. On the other hand, it is also an opportunity to manage, if required, employees’ promotion expectations. Those with an inflated idea of their own abilities and role within the business will benefit from a realistic discussion of their prospects.
An opportunity for your employees to be heard
Good appraisals are always a two-way process. In this way, they provide employees with a great opportunity to address worries, ask questions or share ideas. Managers who successfully respond to these issues will help to develop a happier, more motivated team.
Measuring and rewarding performance
An appraisal is an important occasion to:
- Check that employees are working at the required standard.
- Assess which employees are performing to the highest standard and reward them with appropriate bonuses, pay rises and other benefits.
- Address minor performance issues (more serious performance issues must be addressed outside of the appraisal system as soon as they occur).
Managing changing roles
There are a variety of reasons why job roles change over time, such as the introduction of new technology, new products and new services, or changes to the team. Appraisals give an opportunity to understand and discuss these changes on a one-to-one basis. This includes explaining new responsibilities clearly, setting goals related to the new responsibilities and arranging appropriate training.
As you can see, a sound appraisals process makes an invaluable contribution to your long-term business success. It is central to human resource management and performance management. Understanding the role, benefits and purpose of appraisals is important for all employers so that they believe in them and carry them out to a high standard in order to reap the rewards.
Contact Outsourcing HR for a review of your appraisals process
Contact Outsourcing HR to discover how your appraisals process measures up and what you can do to improve it. Simply call 07894-546333 or email Margaret Keane.