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.
What most employers don’t know is that employees rely on performance reviews to better understand how they’re succeeding in their role, what obstacles they face, and what they’re looking forward to in the coming year. Of course employees may look forward to this more if it’s incentivized, but recent findings have showed us that what employees are craving most right now is feedback and recognition.
While conducting reviews annually is a great start to measuring performance, we believe that conducting a mid-year review can be super beneficial in addition to the annual review.
Employers use midyear performance reviews as a means to discuss with employees their progress on goals and performance to date.
Conducting a midyear review allows supervisors a formal opportunity to check in with their employees for a few purposes, including the following:
An informal six-month performance appraisal allows for midyear adjustments, preventing surprises at the annual performance review. This is a win, win all around.
1. Pinpointing problem areas – there could be an area of opportunity for an employee to overcome challenges and obstacles if it’s brought to their attention by their supervisor. Simply talking this out one-on-one could save the company time and resources by identifying and resolving the problem sooner, rather than later.
2. Building Better Teams- having more meaningful and intentional check-ins with employees promotes a safe space of trust and open communication. These reviews not only are an opportunity to discuss performance, but allows employees and supervisors alike to speak freely in open dialogue at a designated time 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 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 creates 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 to talk about the next steps in their career, so supervisors may make the assumption that they’re complacent in their current role. Conducting these more frequent reviews can help open the door to identifying if employees want to grow and take on more responsibilities. In addition, this could provide the opportunity to supervisors to really take a minute and review all the work being done by a certain employee and potentially recognize they’re 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 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, but 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!
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I'm the founder and chief boss lady at Workplace Harmony. Welcome to New School HR!
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