The importance of gauging employee performance cannot be overstated. The process cuts both ways. It allows workers to know where they stand, how they can improve and what they need to do to get there. For employers, the process lets management measure performance and define goals for the future. These assessments, if properly used, also function as part of a progressive discipline system that protects the organization from wrongful termination lawsuits. With payroll accounting for a huge chunk of operating expenses, business owners must be assured their assets are being allocated wisely. Consider the following steps to develop a strong policy around employee evaluations.
Make Employee Progress Measurable
To figure out how your employees are progressing, create a method to assess their efficiency. At the time of hire, develop a baseline for performance. For salespeople, success is easily defined. Sales quotas and revenue goals are easy to measure. For administrative staff, progress may be less clear cut. Job performance for clerical staff may revolve around the mastery of productivity software applications. Has the team member moved from a novice to an intermediate user of spreadsheets or presentation software? Achieving this goal in a year is a valid measure of progress.
Develop Comprehensive Job Descriptions
Developing a comprehensive job description builds a foundation for evaluating job performance. At the date of hire, the employee should be expected to fulfill the duties assigned by the employer. Some duties may carry more weight than others. Scheduling and meeting deadlines are two vital objectives that an administrative associate must master. If the employee consistently meets those expectations and other duties defined in the description, the employer can get a feel for the quality of the hire. As each duty is examined, a scale can be created to assess achievement. That scale can be used for the unbiased tracking of progress.
Keeping detailed records extends to all facets of business. Maintaining organized personnel files benefits both the employee and employer in many ways. Merit increases in salary or wages often hinge on the employees ability to capably perform job duties. The employee is aware of managements hope for adequate performance. With expectations clearly defined, workers can aspire to financial incentives such as bonuses or pay raises. From an employer perspective, well-written policy guidelines can motivate employees and also assure that compliance with labour laws is being followed.
Employee assessments also serve to provide mentoring to workers when necessary. Struggling employees can use self-assessments to document areas where improvement is needed. Evaluation forms not only provide a medium to coach employees, but they also give employers an opportunity to recognize when a hire may not be working out. A written policy can be used to record poor performance and if necessary, execute employee terminations. Adhering to carefully crafted guidelines minimizes legal action taken by employees who feel they were fired unjustly, protecting the company from financial disaster.