30 March 2017

New Approaches in Performance Management

What is the benefit of the yearly Performance Management appraisal talks and why in many cases does it lead to unpleasant feelings, when it comes to this once a year event? Have you also ask yourself this already? Our today’s blog article investigates the concept of Performance Management processes in the context of Performance Assessment and the associated topics Bonus and Compensation. In many cases these topics are mixed up together in this process and the actual task of the feedback talk recedes into the background or is simply not part of it. Therefore it is recommendable to have a closer look into the new concepts and approaches, instead of only fulfilling a standard process, which neglects the actual topic.

New approaches in Performance Management are important, Source: Pexels.com

The approach of continuous feedback in Performance Management

In many today’s companies people work project based, often inter-divisional and in complex matrix organisations. These structures aren’t in many times part of the yearly Performance Assessments in a lot of companies. But this should be also part of the overall appraisal, even if the responsible superior isn’t the direct Line Manager. This is the reason why these achievements aren’t duly appreciated. That’s why it is useful to apply the continuous feedback within those complex organisations. The newest findings in Performance Management revealed that most employees wish to have a continuous feedback process. And this in the context of positive as well as negative meaning. To receive an overview about this topic, we can recommend you this article from Questback. Here they write about the implementation of continuous feedback at Accenture and the British bicycle team Sky, which is said has led to the fact that they won last years Tour the France. Interesting is the fact that the Sky bicycle riders have the possibility to use a mobile app with which they can rate their own performance. This rating is in the end the base of the constantly held feedback rounds with their team leader. At Accenture the change to continuous feedback came after finding out that the yearly feedback rounds were too long-winded and didn’t tell them much about their key challenges. Besides that the insights from these yearly Performance Management talks didn’t add any value, because they weren’t up to date anymore, a trend that comes from the overall development in terms of today’s rapid digitisation and business transformation. That was one of the reasons why they decided to implement constant feedback rounds.

Do 360 Degree feedbacks the right way

360 Degree feedbacks exist already for a long time, that’s nothing new. However unfortunately it is often wrongly applied. Though it is important to see the internal and external view of a person during the Performance appraisal process and this should be part of the overall Performance Assessment. It is important during the feedback process that the positive traits of a person are confirmed and of course that also the rather negative traits are mentioned, however it should be done in a way that the positive intonation is part of the overall orientation, when two people talk to each other. An interesting article about feedback was published by Derek Stockley and is also very interesting. Because this topic isn’t easy in general the responsible Line Managers are asks to train these communication abilities. The Human Resources department should be aware of this and offer these communication qualifications for their Line Managers, so they learn how to talk to their employees in a constructive and respectful way.

Applying the 360 degrees feedback right, Source: Pexels.com

What is the best mix in Performance Management?

In our opinion the best approach is the mix of continuous and yearly feedback. Then it is often a good solution if both concepts are handled with careful attention. Overall it is essential that feedback is perceived as such and doesn’t get neglected by the yearly bonus and compensation talks. It is important to always remember how to approach the feedback rounds and what language you should apply to empower each other, here it is recommended to follow the instructions, which one can find in Derek Stockley’s article. Basically it is always important, that even if you handle negative feedback you should show the positive intentions. Because Performance Management should be used to strengthen the positive sides of employees, so they can work on their rather weak points and use their own drive.

Which HR Software Providers are innovative in Performance Management?

When it comes to the topic of innovation, you will find a couple of HR Software Providers that are specialised in this area and act as pioneers. One can find a good first overview for instance on G2Growd, as this platform is based in the US there aren’t many European or German speaking solution providers mentioned. Basically it is worth to think outside the box and to receive information from other sources then the ones one is used to. There are plenty of portals and providers. Therefore it is important to carry out a good research or to ask experts for some useful advice. When it comes to the topic of Performance Management it is most important, that you find a Provider, who does have a lot of experience, particularly when it comes to the implementation of software solutions and who can on the long-term accompany your HR processes.

Our Conclusion: Performance Management will have to change in times of Business Transformation and Digitisation

We believe that in today’s times it is important to implement the new approaches in Performance Management, especially with regard of continuous feedback, which can be already seen within some companies. The HR department has the responsibility to bring this topic to the executive management and to convince them, why these changes are meaningful. The increasing technological change, leads more and more to the fact that many business areas have to adapt to change much faster, so they can stay competitive! Because of that the new approaches in Performance Management are advisable and shouldn’t be treated with closed eyes. That’s why it is important to keep the eyes open and to occupy oneself with this topic as soon as possible.

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