5 Things Every Manager Should Do Before The Performance Review

A performance review, which often happens just once a year, is more than a just a task for a manager to check off their to-do list. It’s a way to ensure that the employee sees and supports the company’s objectives and follows the rules. It’s your job to ensure that everything goes smoothly. A performance review is the best time to straighten and update each employee’s file in case the employee would ever sue the company. Being prepared for each performance review fosters a professional atmosphere. It also ensures that the employee takes the review seriously and looks at it as more than just a salary increase.

1. Review Employee’s File

The employee’s file should hold most of the information needed to accurately judge the employee’s performances throughout the review period. It will remind you about incidents you’ve forgotten and refresh your memory about the employee’s last review. If you haven’t been in your current position long, read the file carefully. If the file’s a little thin and missing information, update it as much as possible. Use the employee, their co-workers, and human resources department to piece together the review period.

2. Review Job Description

Reviewing the employee’s job description allows managers to determine how much the employee’s workload increased over the review period and compensate the employee for their hard work. Between performance reviews, an employee can get an assistant or take on another person’s job during downsizing. These should be taken into account when considering performance and salary increases.  Also, the job description tells you, the employee and your manager exactly what the employee does for the company.

3. Encourage the Employee To Prepare For The Review

Give him or her the revised job description and listen to their input. Suggest that the employee creates a list of concerns to discuss during the review. Ask the employee to review the file before the meeting. This will limit any surprises to the employee and ease their anxiety levels before the event.

4. Investigate Any Inconsistencies

If something in the file didn’t seem correct, investigate it. Look for missing reports or documents. It’s possible something got filed in another employee’s file. Ask around. The employee, their coworkers, human resources and your boss might be able to help you find the missing paperwork or assist you in understanding an incident. It’s your job to ensure that your employee’s file is accurate.

5. Fill Out The Paperwork

Finish up the performance review, copy it twice, and put it into the file before the review. You keep one copy to reference during the actual review and the employee receives the other. This way you can make notes on the copy without damaging the original. If you feel the need to update the the review, then you may do so. Also, complete the notification to payroll about the employee’s salary increase and send it. The employee will be impressed with how fast they see the reward for their efforts.

A prepared manager leads the discussion and eases the employee’s anxiety during the review. All the employee needs to do is listen to the employee’s concerns and discuss salary. Preparation is key to making the experience as painless as possible for both the employee and the manager. What do you do to prepare for the performance review?

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