What’s a key feature in any performance appraisal system?

If there was one activity, carried out consistently well within your business that would drive high engagement, productivity and turn around underperformance, would you be interested in embedding it? Well there is and here’s how…

When researching different performance appraisal systems it is easy to focus purely on the appraisal functionality and how close you can get this to your own paper-based version, however you could well be missing a trick here. What if you could also use the introduction of a performance appraisal system to increase individual and company performance? We’ve always thought this was the best approach and academic research into what really drives employee engagement and productivity would support this view:

“In fact researchers cannot emphasise enough the importance of going beyond the formal (annual/twice yearly appraisals) and giving ongoing feedback to employees throughout the year.”

(De Nisi & Pritchard 2006)  

View our Research Paper on the topic 

So, it seems that regular feedback throughout the year is key to delivering high performance and one of the best ways of achieving this is by embedding a culture of one to one’s in your business. You can find out more about the many different types of feedback and how they impact performance in our E-Book – Feedback – The Game Changer for Performance Management.

These one to one meetings are the foundation of your high performance culture but the importance of them can be overlooked. Whether you call them one to one’s or ‘catch ups’, they really should take place at least monthly but very often slip.

One to one meetings are key to:

  • delivering high performance
  • turning round underperformance
  • engaging and retaining talent

Because one to ones should be integral to your performance management cycle, surely it is just as important to consider them as a key feature when researching a new performance appraisal system?

The problem is they are all too frequently overlooked or used as a tactical action driven catch up rather than a more holistic meeting that involves coaching and re-connection between organisational goals and personal objectives. The most effective people managers are completely committed to regular one to one meetings with their staff. The style of the meeting will vary based on the needs of the staff member – the agenda could be driven by either party and they may be nurturing or challenging dependent on the circumstances. Either way they are about performance and should be an integral part of your performance management cycle.

So let’s reflect on the title of this blog – what’s a key feature in any performance appraisal system? or should we say performance management system to emphasise the fact that this is about more than just appraisal?

It is without doubt the one to one functionality – well, we would say this as we built this into our Actus Performance Management Software from the start – but it is absolutely integral to delivering high performance and that is why it is fully incorporated into our software.

How can performance appraisal software support one to ones?

Now clearly, you can and should encourage embedding quality one to one’s within your business at any time – however with the support of appraisal software you can make this message overt and monitor take up. You can also protect your business as performance conversations are documented through the one to one as business as usual, turning round under performers and protecting you from litigation.

If you would like to encourage a culture of one to one’s in your business, why not take a look at Actus Software or get in touch for more information.

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