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Points of Concern in the Company’s Evaluation Form Essay

The evaluation form currently being used by the company has many points of concern. First, it takes a look at the personal characteristics of the employee such as friendliness and attitude towards work. These criteria must be taken into account, however, results / accomplishments of the employee must be considered. It must be noted that assessing characteristics of the person in relation to the job may not be very credible since the rater can be very subjective.

The fact that the manager discontinued the evaluation to give it a thought is a proof that the manager has little confidence that the evaluation process is credible and acceptable to all. It must also be noted that the engineer himself is not confident about the process, claiming that no one is qualified to evaluate him since he is the only trained engineer in the company. Value of Common sets of Evaluation Criteria Having a common set of evaluation forms for all employees can post problems especially when employees compare the results of their performance evaluation.

It is best to set realistic targets first and then come the appraisal period; these will be checked if they were accomplished excellently. The form can be common but the measures will be varied based on the position of the employee and the function. On the other hand, using common sets of evaluation criteria also have advantages. First, it would be easy for the managers and employees to understand since evaluation forms are similar across positions or functions.

Second, come promotion or lateral employee transfer, raters in the evaluation procedure won’t have any difficulty in going through the process since nothing has changed even if employees delivered varying results. For employees, even if they adjust themselves with the demands of the new job (lateral transfer or promotion), what is expected of them has not changed as stipulated in the evaluation forms. What Should be Evaluated? Given the company’s evaluation form, the Balanced Scorecard developed by Kaplan and Norton can be adopted.

The Balanced Scorecard takes into account all perspectives that contribute to the accomplishment of the job. “The Balanced Scorecard translates mission and strategy into objectives and measures organized into four perspectives: Financial, Customer, Business Process and Learning and Growth. ” (Kaplan and Norton). The Financial perspective is the ultimate indicator of whether the strategies being implemented contribute to the achievement of the company’s objectives and goals. This can be measured through percentage in savings, return on investment, actual sales versus sales target, etc.

For the Customer Perspective, “the core outcome measures include customer satisfaction, customer retention, customer acquisition, customer share, etc. ” In the Business Process Perspective, results are being taken into account. The measures should answer the question: What processes / transactions should the employee be good at? These processes include everyday transactions of the employee. The measures under this perspective should have a direct impact on how the company takes care of the customers. For example, a Marketing Associate must be good at conceptualizing and delivering good marketing programs.

The Learning and Growth Perspective focuses on the development and competencies of the employee. Competencies such as attitude towards work, teamwork, integrity, timeliness, etc can be taken into account. For some companies, they require employees to submit reviews of prescribed books, articles and movies to build a culture of learning within the organization. The four perspectives developed by Kaplan and Norton are inter-related and must all contribute to the achievement of the Financial objectives. The relationship can be two-pronged, which means a focus on one perspective will have a significant effect on the other perspectives.

Ideally, when the organization takes care of the people and make them equipped with the necessary skills (Learning and Growth), they will excel in the workplace and can do their jobs well (Business Process). If they can do the job well, customers will be delighted because quality products and services are delivered to them (Customer). If customers are delighted, they will be loyal to the company’s products and services, thus, will translate to revenues or profit. Involving Other Raters in the Appraisal Process

Aside from the Balanced Scorecard, the company can also use the 360 degree feedback. Involving different persons in the evaluation process or multi-rater feedback is beneficial for developmental purposes (Madigan, 1999). The ratee can have an idea on the different things that he has to improve on. As Madigan (1999) quoted Mark Edwards, co-author of the book 360 Degree Feedback: The Powerful New Model for Employee Assessment & Performance Improvement, “Single-source feedback is not very credible to managers and employees. When people get feedback from a boss, they often just don’t believe it.

Whereas, if they get the same feedback — saying the same thing — from multiple sources, they believe it. ” Drawbacks of Involving Other Raters in the Appraisal Process However, multi-rater feedback or 360 degree feedback has not been validated as a tool for performance appraisal. This is especially when the raters are not consistent on what they say about the ratee. Survey fatigue can also be a factor (Madigan, 1999). Employees may find exhausting to rate a lot of their colleagues in their company. Also, raters have a natural tendency to become subjective in the appraisal process.

-Edwards, as again quoted by Madigan (1999) said that his favorite use of the 360 degree feedback is for talent assessment and promotions as the method gives the management an overview of who will succeed in the organization. As Madigan (1999) says, “Legal concerns can arise when a 360-degree instrument, valid only for development purposes, is used for performance appraisal. The Center for Creative Leadership, a nonprofit, educational organization, sells 360-degree instruments, but they are not for appraisal (due in part to the group’s policy of dealing only with leadership development).

Dalton explains, “Anytime you are going to use something that calls itself a test, or a measurement tool, it has to be validated to show that the score means something and that what you are going to use it for is an appropriate purpose. If someone takes you to court, your validation strategy has to be such that you can say, ‘Yes, your honor, we have validated this tool, and it is perfectly acceptable for me to give Carol a 20 percent raise and Maxine a 5 percent raise based on what we understand about this test.

’ Our instruments have not been validated for appraisal purposes, and so we tell people when we sell them, that, in essence, if they use them that way, they will be in court alone. ” Errors in the Appraisal Process that are Caused by Bias Also, it must be noted that performance appraisal methods are affected by several factors that can disrupt the whole process thus, neglecting the true purpose of the Performance Evaluation System.

In organizations where managers or superiors usually rate employees, de Koning (2004) says that they are usually subjective in evaluating employees especially when the evaluation rating is linked to a performance bonus or an increase in pay. De Koning (2004) even noted that in one organization surveyed by Gallup, employees refer to the performance appraisal as “the form you need to give out to give a person a raise. ” With this culture in the organization, managers will be pressured to control the performance appraisal to give everyone a raise.

In some cases, this control can even be used by the rater to deliberately disqualify a ratee from a raise, especially when they are not in good terms. For the employees’ side, they would tend to currying favors for their superiors rather than focusing on excellently performing their respective business processes. There is also the HALO effect. This is when one performance criteria influences the rating in another. For example, if an employee is often absent, other factors will be lower than normal. Citing of critical incidents are also factors for biased because these may be isolated cases only.

Consistency in these incidents must be established so that appraisal results would be credible. A culture of feedback must also be developed so that members of the organization will take the performance appraisal process seriously. In many organizations, the HR units usually send notices reminding everyone to beat the deadline for submission of results of performance appraisal. This is an indicator that the organization crams about the process and not interested to it. Whenever this scenario happens, both raters and ratees would always hustle the ratings just to submit on time, thus to receive a raise.

Timing is also a factor. Performance Appraisal periods must not coincide with other company projects, events or busy period of the year so that the employees’ attention will be focused on the process. If employees are busy delivering business results, they might not have enough time to do the appraisal process and thus, cramming about it just to beat the deadline. Performance appraisal must be given time such that the employees’ exemplary results and points for development can be properly highlighted. Other Performance Appraisal Techniques There are a lot of performance appraisal methods that can be adopted by the company.

Methods include the Critical Incident Method where the rater lists down incidents that had an impact to the performance of the employee. The Weighted Checklist is a list of effective and ineffective behavior on the job. Essay Evaluations are narratives prepared by the rater about the performance of the employee. However, this method is highly dependent on the ability of the rater to articulate his thoughts into writing. Another technique is the Management by Objectives (MBO) method. In this method, the managers set objectives for the employee. MBO focuses on what is accomplished rather than how it is accomplished (Ngo, D.

, 2009). It must be noted that the Critical Incident Method and Essay evaluations tend to be subjective and focus on the behavior or competencies while the Weighted Checklist and the Management by Objectives measure results. Results look at the expected outputs of the job while competencies are sets of skills, behavior and knowledge that drive the delivery of outputs. However, these methods may work for if fit for the type of organization (e. g. MNC, NGO, GO, etc. ) As stated in wikipedia. org, there is also the Behaviorally Anchored Rating Scales that are used to report performance.

It is an appraisal method that seeks to combine the benefits of narratives, critical incidents, and quantified ratings by securing a quantified scale with specific narrative examples of good or poor performance (wikipedia. org). How to Improve the Evaluation Form The company can evaluate the above methods and study which is the most appropriate and acceptable to the employees and management. Company culture and practices must be taken into account when adopting a particular method. The company must also take into account that their strategies must be linked with the appraisal method.

However, every company can adopt a generic method that has three phases. Phase 1 is setting of expectations. Usually, management set these expectations during Strategic Planning Sessions where it stipulates what should be delivered within a given period. Phase 2 is monitoring. Delivery of results must be monitored so that appropriate interventions can be implemented to drive the results. The last phase is the evaluation and follow through. This is the evaluation proper and when next steps are identified for the development of the employee.

To determine the appropriate evaluation form, the question of what is expected by management must be answered. If management expectations focus on competencies such as customer orientation, decision-making, teamwork, etc. Whatever the case is, the above techniques can be used. For the case of the engineer, the Balanced Scorecard can be used since it can integrate both results and the competencies. A balanced weight for both will add credibility to the appraisal process. The weight can be based on what is more important for the company, results or competencies?

Whatever the case is, results of evaluation must be justified or can be explained well by the rater. Also, appraisal must be about performance and not the importance of the job. Usually, organizations benchmark with others regarding their performance management systems. Also, HR Consultants can be hired to help the organization improve the appraisal system. It is suggested that the company do an organizational diagnosis first. An organizational diagnosis will give the company the necessary data that will improve the performance management system.

After the organizational diagnosis, they should develop a framework that will link the performance appraisal rewards. It must be noted that linking performance with rewards will make employees more motivated in their job. After this, the company can develop their system. As stated above, planning sessions must be done to communicate to the employees their key result areas (KRAs). Once KRAs are identified, a per division or department meeting must be done to identify how these KRAs will be measured. For example, it is a KRA of a manager to send his or her subordinates to training.

This can be measured by the number of employees sent. A 100% attendance of subordinates can be the “outstanding” while 50-99% is “satisfactory. ” This must be done to all positions. Once the employee knows how exactly he or she will be measured, he or she can easily determine if the job is being done well or not. Doing these steps can make the evaluation process in the company more credible and objective to employees.

References: De Koning, G. M. J. 2004. Evaluating employee performance (part 1). Retrieved June 14, 2009, from (http://www. whatmakesagoodleader. com/Employee Performance-Evaluation. html) Kaplan, R. and Norton, D. 1996. Translating strategy into action: the balanced scorecard. Harvard Business School Press. Boston, Massachusetts. Madigan, C. O. 1999. Full-circle feedback. Retrieved June 13, 2009, from (http://businessfinancemag. com/career-hr). Ngo, Davi. (2009). Performance appraisal methods. Retrieved June 13, 2009, from (http://www. humanresources. hrvinet. com/performance-appraisal-methods/). Wikepedia. org. Behaviorally anchored rating scales. Retrieved June 13, 2009, from (http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Behaviorally_anchored_rating_scales).

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