Designing A Mixed Model - Performance Management System

Posted in Operations & IT Articles, Total Reads: 1730 , Published on 26 December 2013
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Every organization today is out trying to find the last piece of the performance management puzzle. They are out trying to find different ways to reward human performance that will add actual value to their organization. I will be trying to do the same in this piece of work.


The key to pull an organization upward, I feel, is to harness the source of motivation which would make employees perform and use it appropriately.  Our PMS should act as this tool which serves exactly that purpose. It should convey to the employees about what is important to the organization. Whatever be the position of the employee, or the ability to do his job, there should be a measure for each individual which reflects it. It should reach down to the heart of each employee and bring to the surface a feeling that all that planning, assessment, training, review and feedback was actually tied to something real. The employees should feel that he is a part of whatever is making his organisation thrive.

Image Courtesy:  pakorn, freedigitalphotos.net


That said, the measure of each individual’s performance should not only be about money. We cannot assume that every individual is driven only by that one traditional factor alone. Other intrinsic rewards like promotion, recognition and job enlargement could also be a part of the motivation package that the organization offers.


Every performance management system’s objectives should concentrate and dwell on five very important things I feel:

  • The Effort of the Individual in acquiring skills
  • Implementation of the competencies he has acquired
  • The level of performance of the individual in his current job
  • Multi Rater System
  • Open Feedback System


So the model is one as we can call it The Mixed Model. Every organization and every employee is unique. A mixture of different methods to suit the needs of our employees is what we should be looking for.


1. The Effort of the Individual in acquiring skills

The importance the employee gives in developing himself to serve his organization can be measured by taking into account all his efforts like

  • Number of trainings he has attended the past year
  • Number of certifications he has done in his field of work

The PMS should be thus linked to the learning and development sub system which enable the employee and the organisation to synergize and grow!


2. Implementation of the competencies he has acquired

Possession of a competency alone does not mean that he becomes a valuable asset to the company automatically. He should convert them to results or atleast make an effort to translate them.

The measuring tool should also be a robust one. The descriptions of the competencies should be properly worded so that assessment is done accurately. An objective approach needs to be followed.  Written tests or one-on-one interviews can be conducted to assess the individual and a test score should be generated.  The assessors should also be trained on how the competency development in an individual can be monitored consistently. On implementation the skills of the individual would further develop.

The PMS should thus be linked to the competency management system of the organisation and thereby be in line with business goals like, excellence and innovation.


3. The level of performance of the individual in his current job

The results he produces every quarter can be measured and assessed by his immediate supervisor. The quality of his work should also be judged based on the number defects or rework needed for a job he works on.

The PMS system should thus be linked to the business goal of becoming the leader in their respective field by maximising productivity.


4. Multi rater system

Most organisations today have implemented the 360 degree method in their PMS. But a few others, who still follow the traditional method of having the immediate supervisor alone appraise an employee, could include peers as appraisers too in the PMS process. This would develop and nurture a team spirit in the organisation.

Considering the size and nature of an organisation, the implemetation of a 360 degree feedback system may not be possible. The amount of paperwork and form filling required would render the system cumbersome and ineffective. So, apart from the immediate supervisor and the HOD the employee could receive an appraisal from his peers as well, there by making it a mutli rater system. A matrix can be created for the entire organisation to find out who rates who and clashes identified. We can also proactively find out if any employee is being burdened with appraising too many people in the organisation.

This multi rater system is usually represented in a graphic form which will enable the employee to understand his own performance and competencies. The employee would be able to see how much he had scored in comparison to the aggreagte company data.

Anonymity need not be maintained essentially, so that the appraiser is accountable of the feedback he gives to another employee. And also the appraisee can get back to the appriaser to gain more insight into the area that he needs improvement in.


5. Feedback System should be Open and better organised

Anonymity in the PMS process can seem an alluring option at first sight, but taking into consideration the accountability they appraiser would hold and the year-round suggestions an appraise might get from an open feedback system; we need to vote for the latter.

Feedback should be given keeping the devlopement motive in mind.

Feedback should be an integrated part of other training and development systems within the whole of an organisation. It wil make sure that the feedback given is being used in the right sense to improve productivity.

The person giving the feedback should be first aware of the context and subject in which he is giving the feedback in order to earn credibility.

The organization should be committed to the growth of the employees by means of training and development, for any feedback to be taken seriously and practiced effectively.


To Conclude:

A perfect and bias-free performance management system has not yet come into existence, but we as HR managers will constantly thrive to make that a reality. Will act on short comings, will do-away with processes that do not work anymore, will tweak processes that need a bit of change, will adopt practices from of old, will explore new systems from other countries, will keep trying options, will keep knocking doors, to make our employees realise that the PMS in their organisation is not just a book-keeping activity, but is, something very important.


This article has been authored by J Diana Cecil Christina from LIBA


References

  1. Performance – Creating the performance – driven organization, Mark A. Stiffler
  2. Re engineering performance Management, Tracey B. Weiss, Franklin Hartle (The Hay Group)
  3. http://www.wjh.harvard.edu/~cfc/Chabris1998a.html
  4. http://www.jamiesonhr.com/article/2012/1/10/forced-distribution-bell-curving-employee-performance-appraisals.aspx


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