Performance Management: Continuous Process on Productivity Improvement

Empowering People to Drive Productivity

Performance management is an important management responsibility.

Effective management of performance becomes more important in a dynamic business environment, and in the face of globalization.

This is a tool you can employ in achieving your organization's objectives. In this way, it is also seen as an employee motivational tool.

You will have experienced the impact of doing this either as a supervisor or as an employee.

Performance appraisal is not performance management. It is only a small part of the management of workforce performance. This is one of the more important matters in the management of performance.

Your organization may have implemented performance appraisal in the mistaken belief that this is managing performance of employees.

The differences include:

In Performance Appraisal:

  1. you assess employees' performance
  2. Communication is a one-way channel
  3. blame is the name of the game
  4. you look back to the past

In Managing Performance:

  1. you make plan how to improve performance
  2. there is dialogue between the supervisor and subordinates
  3. problem-solving is the focus
  4. focus on the present and the future.

The personal experience may not excite you if the impact such a system was minimal or none was perceived.

Approach to Human Resources Performance Management

The question is whether your organization had adopted the right approach in managing performance.

This involves establishing clear expectations and understanding about many things.

Look into the following:

  • Identify your employees' important job functions.
  • How does the employees' job contribute to the goals of your organization?
  • What are required in order to 'do the job well? Your employee is the best person to consult in defining and re-defining the job.
  • How will you measure job performance?
  • What are the barriers that hinder good performance and how can you and your employee minimize or eliminate them?
  • How can you and your subordinate work together to improve his or her performance?

Performance Appraisal is NOT Performance Management. Choosing the right performance appraisal method or methods is essential in order to ensure that your organization can achieve its HR objectives.

Employee Development and Performance Management

The performance of your workforce affects your organization's bottom-line.

Good employees must maintain or improve their performance. Under-performing ones need help in order to perform well. If you don't help them, they will affect your organizational plans.

By managing performance results you can identify the kind of training that your employees need. This is only possible if the performance review is done properly.

It happen fairly often that the information gained from performance is not used for review of people management strategies.

One way to do this is to draw up your training and development plan with the objective of realizing the full potential of your employees. This will enhance their competencies and improve their productivity. Determine your employees' competency gap in order to do this.

Objectives of Performance Management

You would already know some of the objectives that include:

  • Measurement of Productivity
  • You can measure performance of both routine and non-routine tasks, expected behavior, conformance to rules and procedures, and achievement of key performance indicators (KPI).
  • Communication of Performance Results
  • Implementing a two-way communication makes your employees more motivated and confident. Feedback gives opportunities to your employees to make improvement and to correct any performance weakness. Clarify expectations.
  • Training and Development Needs
  • Workforce performance evaluation can assist you to identify competency gaps that affect performance. You can identify the training and development needs of each of your people.
  • Decision Making
  • You can use the evaluation results to make decisions on performance incentives for good performers. It can also help in making decisions on employee retention, redeployment, promotion, or, in the worst case scenario, termination.
  • Providing Real-Time Human Resource Information
  • The results can help in the review of your recruitment policy, selection method, the job description, and performance standards and measurement.
  • Management Enabler
  • Your managers will become better decision makers, as the result. They will become more adept in decision making and management of workforce performance.

The type of performance appraisal format that you intent to use depends on your objectives and a number of other matters. Using forms make performance appraisal easier and more systematic. Click here for more Information

Weaknesses of Human Resources Performance Management

Management and employees see performance matters differently.

The former treats management of performance as a management tool. Employees consider it as acknowledgment and as a way to reward them. This creates conflicts.

You must have some acquaintance with the weaknesses in the management of workforce performance.

It is probable that it is the performance appraisal system under question, not the management of employee performance.

The following are some of them.

  • Vague rating methods.
  • Some tasks are not easy to measure or impossible to measure.
  • Performance standards are not clearly defined.
  • Evaluation is often deferred.
  • There is no objectivity in making value judgment on performance.
  • Assessors often fail to discuss with employees.
  • Ratings show a central tendency, indicating uneasiness to make hard decisions.
  • Evaluation results are used to discipline employees.
  • Results are changed by senior management.
  • Recent events, whether positive or negative, are given undue weight.
  • Raters are not given adequate training to equip them with skills in managing employees' performance.
  • Employees are not given the opportunity to comment on the assessment results.
  • The evaluation results are not used in management decisions.

So what must you do?

Gather additional information to ensure that you can achieve a high degree of efficiency and effectiveness of performance management system.

One of the various important things to do is to ensure that there is a linkage of employees' performance to your organizational productivity.

Are the performance measures valid for each specific job?
Do these go towards improving productivity?

Review and evaluate effectiveness of Performance Management

Evaluation Effectiveness

So, how can you ensure that the evaluation has a high degree of success?

Provide your raters or assessors, namely, managers and supervisors, with the necessary skills particularly:

  • Skills in managing performance
  • Leadership skills
  • Decision making skills
  • Inter-relationship and communication skills
  • Delegating Skill, and
  • Interview Techniques

To recap,

  • Performance appraisal is NOT performance management but forms only a part of it, an important part.
  • Clearly explain to your employees every steps in the human resource performance management process. Allow them to ask questions.
  • Work with your people during performance planning, reviews, and decision making. Implement their suggestions once you have agreed to do so.
  • Communicate clearly to your employees what they are expected to do, and how well they are expected to do them. Change the goals where situations require it.
  • Align your employees' job responsibilities to the goals of the organization.
  • Inform your employees in advance about the rewards for good performance.
  • Managing performance is a year-long process. Regularly update your information on how your employees are getting on.
  • Review position half-way into the assessment period, at about six months after the first meeting with employees.
  • Effective communication plays an important role in managing performance. Forms are only a tool used to gather information.
  • Make accurate records to assist you in decision making.
  • Use evaluation results to further develop your employees, not penalize them.
  • Make use of the results in improving your compensation plan.

Your organizational objective is to improve productivity and profitability. Thus, it cannot ignore the importance of designing an effective system within a motivating environment.

It is a "must do" under strategic human resources management. For example, labour turnover and absenteeism can affect your organization's productivity. This is because productivity is the result of performance. Check OUT whether MBO is of beneficial help.

You and your people can achieve better results by working smarter.

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