For many employers, conducting an annual performance review is just another box to check. It’s the vessel that flows into annual raises and very generic goal setting. But here’s the thing: frequent feedback is important to employee engagement, performance, and workflow. Let me explain.
What most employers don’t know is that employees rely on performance reviews. Performance reviews help employees better understand how they’re succeeding in their roles. It helps them see obstacles they face, and, what they’re looking forward to in the coming year. Of course, employees may look forward to reviews if incentivized. However, recent findings have shown us that what employees are craving most right now is feedback and recognition.
Conducting reviews annually is a great start to measuring performance. However, we believe that conducting a mid-year review can be super beneficial in addition to the annual review.
Employers use mid-year performance reviews as a means to discuss with employees their progress on goals and performance to date.
Conducting a mid-year review allows supervisors to formally check in with their employees for a few purposes, including the following:
An informal six-month performance appraisal allows for mid-year adjustments, preventing surprises at the annual performance review. This is a win-win all around.
So, let’s dive into the benefits of conducting reviews.
1. Pinpointing Problem Areas – Bringing attention to challenges and obstacles for an employee earlier lends more time for improvement. Simply talking this out one-on-one could save the company time and resources. Identifying and resolving the problem sooner rather than later helps everyone.
2. Building Better Teams – Having more meaningful and intentional check-ins with employees promotes a safe space of trust and open communication. These reviews are not just a time to discuss performance. It’s an opportunity for employees and supervisors to speak freely in open dialogue that focuses solely on the employee.
3. Improving Employee Motivation – While these are not always incentivized, they do provide recognition for the work being performed. As humans, we all want to be recognized for hard work, and this is a simple way of doing that. When people hear they’re doing a good job, they tend to work harder and smarter. They want to achieve not only their own goals but the goals of the business as well.
4. Creating Communication – As mentioned above, these intentional check-ins create a safe space for communication. Whether you’re a small or large company, making time to discuss and review the job being done by your direct reports can be difficult. We’re all very busy, but employees always want to feel heard.
5. Identifying Candidates for Promotion – Sometimes, employees can be nervous when talking about the next steps in their career. Supervisors may make the assumption that they’re complacent in their current role. Conducting more frequent reviews can open the door to identifying if employees want to grow and take on more responsibilities. In addition, reviews provide opportunities for supervisors to really take a minute to focus on a certain employee. Supervisors can see the work being done, and potentially recognize if the employee’s ready to move into a new role.
In summary, the performance review is a crucial part of the ongoing dialogue between managers and employees. It emphasizes to your employees the importance of frequent feedback and that you’re listening to their concerns/needs, summarizes ongoing performance and development conversations, and provides a record of past performance and expectations for work moving forward.
So not only are reviews a crucial tool in measuring an employee’s success, it’s also a tool to leverage in building and sustaining a cohesive team and establishing a relationship between employee and supervisor.
In addition, the more frequently these conversations happen, the more positive the experience is for the employee, which ultimately enhances your workplace culture.
Megan Keough is an HR Advisor at Workplace Harmony. She began her career in higher education where she assisted faculty and staff for over three years with various Human Resources needs. In early 2021, Megan joined the Workplace Harmony team as an HR Generalist. She supports clients in different capacities, helping rebuild and rebrand their HR departments, creating and implementing new process flows, and much more!
Hi, I'm Lauren
I'm the founder and chief boss lady at Workplace Harmony. Welcome to New School HR!
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