Not many supervisors enjoy doing employee evaluations.  Too often evaluations are painful and time consuming.  However, they are an important opportunity to provide employees with constructive feedback that can help them succeed in their career and workplace.  Additionally, providing employees with honest feedback and direction promotes efficiency and increases morale that can translate to improved profitability in the workplace.  The key is planning a proper employee evaluation process that will positively impact both employees and supervisors.

Planning a successful employee evaluation process includes:

Selecting the Right Evaluator

Management needs to have impartial individuals responsible for employee evaluations.  Usually, this means a supervisor with a direct line to an employee.  Also, the right evaluator may mean training your supervisors in doing employee evaluations.

Setting Evaluation Frequency

All employees in the same job classification should be evaluated on the same time cycle.  Whether that’s every quarter, once a year or some other time period, make sure it’s consistent for all employees in that category.

Setting Objective Criteria

Employers should strive to evaluate employees on objective factors, like meeting billable hours, sales numbers or project deadlines.  For professional services that require a more subjective criterion, supervisors/evaluators need to maintain a professional tone.

Written Evaluations by Supervisors

The comments in the evaluation should be specific, have a purpose, and identify performance incidents where an employee did well and where improvement is needed.  Supervisors should highlight both the positive and negative in a constructive manner.  Where misconduct has occurred, the comments should also reflect workplace Rules that were violated and the Impact the performance problems have caused to the employer, other employees and/or members of the public.

Employee Self-Assessments

Employees should assess themselves as part of the evaluation process.  Allowing an employee some input in the evaluation gives them a stake in the process.

Meet with the Employee to Go Over the Evaluation

Face to face communication between the supervisor and employee is key to a successful employee evaluation.  Both will be going over not only the supervisors’ evaluation but also the employee’s self-assessment.  If the supervisor and employee agree on the areas that need improvement, it’s easier to set performance goals for the future.  If they don’t agree, then the supervisor can constructively explain his or her point of view.

Developing Clear Policies and Procedures

Employees should receive copies of their evaluations and have a clear understanding of how the system works.  Companies should develop an evaluation handbook that explains the procedures for employee evaluations.  The handbook should describe the criteria used, how often evaluations are done, who will conduct the evaluations and any training that evaluators undergo.


DISCLAIMER: Content within this post should not be considered legal advice and is for informational purposes only. Communications made through this post do not create an attorney-client relationship. Hackler Flynn & Associates is not responsible for any content that you may access from third-party resources that may be accessed through or linked to this post. Hackler Flynn & Associates is only licensed to practice in California.

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