The performance management process is an interactive communication based process whereby management and employees work together to design, measure and evaluate the individual s accomplishments, short term goals, career path and general contribution to the enterprise. Performance management also involves providing feedback and enabling employees to understand their performances so that they can aspire to higher levels. Additionally, it promotes performance and develops individual attitudes towards work which in turn motivates individual workers to work optimally.
The performance management process begins at recruitment and ends at performance management strategy planning phase. This is the point when the provider determines its future needs and what its future personnel needs will be. Including expectations for skill sets, skills, knowledge and development needs, resources and functions. These are all determined by the HR strategic objectives of the company and these are usually set out in a plan or brief plan. Once these objectives are defined, the next stage of the method kicks in and this is where plans are developed to achieve these aims. This planning stage can sometimes take weeks, and at other times, a few weeks.
The key objectives for this stage of the performance management process are to establish short and long term goals, set up plans with measurable objectives and develop plans for evaluation at every stage of the process. The first objective is to set performance standards, to ensure that these are always achieved at each stage of the cycle. Objectives to be set to include the achievement of designated levels (as an example, customer satisfaction), attaining pre-defined targets (like the amount of sales each month), achieving a particular target (such as the amount of new accounts opened) and the achievement of a certain level of performance or quality.
The aims of this second stage of the performance management process are to develop plans for each goal of the first stage. These include defining exactly what the processes or systems used are, the criteria used to measure these goals and their time scales, specifying the actions required to achieve these objectives and their frequency and defining the resources required. A strategy is then drawn up from the team, reviewed by the senior manager and put into operation. Reviewing and approving the programs means more work can be done on time and the odds of attaining the set goals are improved.
At this point in the performance management process the managers are expected to be responsible for taking action against any failure of the plans. Failure to do this results in sanctions, which may include demotions or penalties. For managers this can mean a significant headache, as they’ve been brought into the job solely for the purpose of achieving the set goals and getting trophies. The punishment for managers here may not be quite as heavy, but the simple fact remains they are now accountable for the performance of their workers and can face disciplinary action if they are unable to accomplish the goals set. If this situation arises then it is very likely that the manager has made a wrong decision, as the goals were not ones he set out to attain.
The next stage in the performance management process sees the workers involved in achieving the set targets or targets. The criteria used for rating employees have changed over time, from raw scorecards at the start to complex numerical metrics today. However, there are a few core areas that remain in place, and are the foundation for nearly all other performance tests. These core areas are the basis for establishing pay structures, developing performance management policies, establishing goals and objectives and evaluating employees. The workers must provide satisfactory information on performance, provide specific and precise feedback on their own activities, attitudes and performance to supervisors, who in turn may use this information to set a framework for establishing pay structures and determining goals and objectives.
The final and most important phase of the performance management process involves the review of the frame and the general functioning of the workforce. The review ensures that the objectives of the strategy are being met, and that the measures of success are being determined and tracked. The review also reassures the workers that their work is contributing to the achievement of the business and that they are valued for their work. The performance review provides an atmosphere of continuous process improvement where targets and objectives are continuously re-evaluated according to new demands. The sole way to guarantee the success of the whole performance management process is to make certain that the organization is following a plan that has been thoroughly thought through and implemented to its fullest capacity.
Worker involvement in the performance management process is vital to its success. It encourages employees to be actively involved in the development of the strategies and to contribute to the success of the strategy. The more the employee contributes, the more he or she knows about the objectives of the organization and the more he or she can play a role to fulfill them. Employee involvement in the procedure develops a feeling of ownership for the team and works towards providing a cohesive and positive support system for those employees.