Use a performance management system

1. Work with all departments to decide on a framework for the performance tracking system. How will the system impact performance? Which criteria will make it more transparent?

Help your team understand that you’ll collect data on things like overtime work and individual contributions to specific projects. Rate employees using a Graphic Rating Scale method. Use numbers from 1 to 5 or 1 to 10 to rank individual performances. Consider other rating methodologies, such as: 360-degree feedback. Collect information from other teams to assess an employee.  Self-evaluation. Ask employees to state their achievements, strengths, and weaknesses.  Management by objectives (MBO). Use individual results for assessment. Suitable when you can quantify results. For example, you can gauge performance by referencing the sales per employee numbers. Checklists where appraisers create a Yes-No list to identify key areas where employees excel or underperform.

2. Start a discussion with employees, managers, C-suite staff, company partners, and board members to ensure broad support for the PMS.

Brainstorm with different teams and agree on contentious issues. For example, using the number of sales to measure sales team performance can be contentious on many grounds.  Some markets can be difficult to penetrate. Consumer spending can vary across cities and world regions.  Some products are harder to sell than others.  Some sales teams may use unethical practices like black hat marketing to increase sales volumes. Resolve discrepancies by using data to support your claims. Invite PM experts to provide insight into the system and explain why it’s important.

3. Align employee and company goals to bolster productivity and retention. Ensure goals are reasonable, achievable, and relevant.

Align employee daily tasks with the company’s short-term, mid-term, and long-term goals. What activities can employees perform daily to achieve their monthly objectives?  Tie employee goals to your company’s growth strategy. Give employees milestones and identify areas where they excel. Employees with goals have intrinsic motivation to succeed and are more productive.  Encourage employees to choose their own goals. Be sure to set the minimum standards to prevent teams from underperforming. For example, if you’re managing a call center and expect each attendant to handle at least 20 calls a day, use that number as the minimum standard.  Foster a healthy working environment by setting consistent goals for employees. The performance review system shouldn’t promote unhealthy competition between team members.  Encourage fairness and transparency. Let employees point out any gray areas.  Breed a positive work culture by embracing a transformational leadership style. Ensure that employees have an equal stake in decision-making.  Avoid leveraging internal competition to boost productivity. It demoralizes and frustrates employees.  Let PM be an ongoing process. Make necessary changes as needed.

4. Make using the PMS a company policy. Allow employees to accept its terms and conditions by affixing their signatures.

Make using the PM software a company policy for renewal of contracts and employee onboarding. HR teams won’t have to duplicate training programs for new staff. Protect the company from litigation. Be ready when an employee sues your company regarding performance management.  Familiarize yourself with employee rights in the area of pay, workforce safety, and workers’ compensation.  Don’t overstep your mandate. Cultivate an atmosphere of collaborative productivity in the workplace.

5. If you have a hybrid workforce, ensure the PMS is accessible to all, set clear performance goals, and track progress in real time.

Traditional productivity measurements don’t accurately measure hybrid workforce performance. A PMS that’s accessible via web portals, mobile apps, and desktops is the key to a successful hybrid workforce.

6. Create a formal training program that explains the functions and benefits of the PM software. Teach employees how to navigate the PMS tool effectively.

Create a guide or manual for the software, and update the system to align with employee and company expectations. Let employees understand that their role is to focus on continuous improvement.

7. Review the PM system to ensure that it meets your company’s goals by collecting feedback and benchmarking it against systems with demonstrable success.

Is the PMS producing the results you want? Determine whether it evaluates performance in the way employees and managers expect.  Does the system align with the company’s overall objectives? Test the resilience of the system by deploying it for a month or two before collecting feedback. Measure employee performance using simple and relatable metrics such as: Attendance.  Time management. Contributions to business success. Career goals and progression. Participation in on-the-job training.  Employee achievements. Consider practical mechanisms for reviewing current practices and implementing best practices.