Top 3 (Surprisingly Basic) Reasons Typical Performance Evaluations Don’t Work

written by bethburgee on May 6, 2013 in Guest Blog and Under The Radar with no comments
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This is a Guest Post by Christian Meyers, CEO and Co-Founder of GoodRevu. Follow at @goodrevu

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Studies show that 90% of companies worldwide conduct performance evaluations. Business across the board—from restaurants to manufacturers to high technology—are interested in measuring employee performance. Unfortunately, today’s performance evaluations aren’t very effective and it comes down to three surprisingly basic things:

:: Performance feedback and evaluation tools aren’t adopted. Much of the available software is inaccessible and difficult to use. Users struggle with logging in, navigating and not losing their work. If users can’t easily log in, navigate without training, and quickly get work done, users won’t user the software solution—and businesses won’t buy it.

:: Evaluations use an alien language. Traditional performance evaluations use a pseudo-psychological language that is insufficiently job-specific to be useful. Engineers don’t talk about vague “competencies,” “development opportunities” and “high-po talent pools”, they talk about test-driven development. Sales people talk about demonstrating ROI to customers. Marketers talk about conversion rates. Using relatable language is incredibly important and often overlooked.

:: Feedback and evaluations aren’t done regularly and on time. Coaching is usually ineffective if only done once a year. Imagine a professional football player receiving coaching once or twice a year? To be effective, managers need to deliver structured evaluations more frequently. For most companies, quarterly evaluations are an aggressive, initial goal.

The good news is that solutions to these problems are universal, straightforward, and do not need to be over-engineered. Supporting tools can’t be a barrier; they must be easily accessible, self-explanatory, and help users complete work. Evaluations should use job-specific, real-world language for describing performance and feedback and evaluations should be conducted frequently. Understanding the importance of employee performance evaluations and leveraging these best practices will enable your business to get the most out of your number one investment: people.