Performance Reviews and How to Write Them
An employee performance review formally assesses employee work completed over a specific time period. Employee performance reviews are also commonly referred to as performance appraisals or performance evaluations and may include components such as-
- Employee self evaluation
- Direct reports input
- Opportunity to set goals
- Professional development conversations
- Task performance review examples
- Team member input
- Customer service review examples
- Two-way constructive feedback
Common employee skill assessments covered during an employee evaluation include-
- Problem solving abilities
- Communication skills
- Time management capabilities
- Interpersonal skills
- Customer service capabilities
How to Write and Develop an Employee Performance Review
The average performance review process takes around three hours to complete and is generally overseen by an employee's manager.
Best practices for writing employee performance reviews and performing effective employee appraisals include-
1. Consistent feedback
Especially if your business only administers annual performance reviews, it is crucial to find opportunities to evaluate employee performance informally. Notify your employees when their performance exceeds expectations or needs improvement by offering consistent feedback throughout the entire year.
A common performance management mistake is failing to regularly administer positive feedback to top performers. In order to keep employee engagement levels high, outstanding team members who consistently perform great quality work must also be recognized.
In an ideal world you would only have positive feedback for your employees but the reality is that every employee needs improvement in some areas. Your business's work environment and company culture are negatively impacted when performance issues are not addressed promptly and transparently.
A combination of constructive feedback and creative solutions can go a long way in improving employee performance. It is helpful to bring up specific performance review examples to substantiate constructive feedback.
Even if a team member is a remote worker, insist on a face-to-face employee evaluation over video chat. Face-to-face conversations avoid miscommunications while creating ample opportunity for a two-way conversation.
Failure to administer a performance appraisal face-to-face can communicate to your employees that you are not actually concerned with their professional development or their individual work performance.
Whether performance appraisals are conducted by a human resources professional, manager, or a small business owner, a face-to-face performance evaluation asserts the evaluator as a team player who is invested in their employees.
4. Supplemental Examples
Performance review examples substantiate constructive feedback and facilitate problem solving based conversations. Specific review examples encourage the evaluator and evaluatee to work together to find creative solutions instead of speaking abstractly.
Employees will also note that you are mindful of their performance, which can further boost employee engagement levels.
5. Be Respectful
A performance review can be an immensely stressful event for any employee. Whenever possible, maintain a positive attitude throughout the performance review process to avoid team members disengaging or feeling attacked.
Make sure employees exit their performance evaluation with a clear sense of what needs improvement and where they exceed expectations. Work together with your team members to set goals for professional development and employee performance improvements.
6. Purposeful Language
The review phrases used during an employee evaluation should be intentional. Studies have identified more effective performance review phrases and topics such as-
- Creativity- Pointing out how an employee finds creative solutions or brings new ideas to your business is a great way to encourage a positive attitude boost. Supplement with specific examples to even further motivate your employees.
- Improvements- Being told an aspect of employee performance needs improvement can stress out even the calmest employee. Make sure to actively identify and communicate areas where employees did improve their performance following their last evaluation.
- Management- Especially for employees who set goals for professional development and are particularly career-oriented, recognizing management capabilities can significantly increase employee engagement levels.
- Communication- Interpersonal skills are essential to effective performance in the workplace. An employee who has excellent communication skills should be recognized and rewarded.
- The performance review process is a human resource management tool used to assesses employee work over a specificized period of time.
- The ability to review performance helps businesses and team members better understand what works and does not work. Employee skills are also evaluated, ranging from interpersonal skills to problem solving abilities.
- Both employees and businesses benefit from employee performance reviews and the data provided.
- Best practices for employee performance reviews range from providing supplemental review examples to keeping a positive attitude whenever possible.