Podcast: Is Your Performance Appraisal Process Ready For Prime Time?

Hosted by: David Weisenfeld

With performance review season fast approaching, this is a good time to examine whether your company can perform these reviews more effectively. A Fortune magazine survey a few years back found that only 2 percent of HR people think yearly reviews provide anything useful.

On this podcast, XpertHR Legal Editor Marta Moakley provides a look at the pros and cons regarding this increasingly hot-button issue. She acknowledges there is a clear trend to move away from the traditional annual performance appraisal. But she is quick to add, "The reality is we're not moving away from performance reviews as a concept, we're moving away from that annual administrative burden."

Podcast: Is Your Performance Appraisal Process Ready For Prime Time?

November 10, 2015

As an example, Moakley notes that in sales-driven organizations, annual reviews might not work best because they may not be aligned with the employer's goals. Instead, she says something scheduled around a sales cycle or on a quarterly basis might make more sense. As a result, Moakley says, "It's important for HR and other stakeholders to understand current internal processes and evaluate them on whether they make sense for that particular business."

Some other key insights include:

  • Achieving consistency to stamp out potential bias;
  • Relying on observable, reliable facts - not opinions;
  • Giving regular feedback; and
  • Protecting against potential liability risks.

"Performance appraisals if done well can really provide defenses against a host of claims," says Moakley. "If you have good documentation that shows this process was a fair one and was based on facts, then you short-circuit that discrimination claim."