Effective Performance Evaluation
Performance appraisal is defined as a formal and productive process for measuring an employee’s work and results in relation to their work responsibility. It is used to measure an employee’s added value in terms of increased business success compared to industry standards and Return on Investment (ROI).
All companies that have learned the art of “winning from within” by focusing internally on their employees use a systematic performance evaluation process to measure and evaluate employee performance on a regular basis. Ideally, employees are classified each year on their anniversaries so that they can either be promoted or benefit from an appropriate distribution of salary increases. Performance appraisal also plays a direct role by providing regular feedback to employees so that they know their own performance metrics.
A regular performance review is a report from an employee’s supervisor that recognizes the work and improvement opportunities he or she has done over a period of time.
An employer can provide continuous feedback on an employee’s strengths and strive to improve the areas where employees need to work.
It is an integrated platform that enables employees and employers to find a common basis for what they both see as quality performance. This improves communication, which usually leads to better and more accurate team measurements and therefore better performance outcomes.
The aim of this overall performance evaluation process is to improve the functioning of a team or organization in order to achieve higher customer satisfaction. A manager should evaluate his team members regularly, not just once a year. In this way, the team can avoid new and unexpected problems by constantly working to improve its skills and effectiveness.
Management can organize regular employee training and qualification seminars based on the development areas identified after a performance assessment. Management can effectively lead the team and productively allocate resources after evaluating objectives and setting performance standards. Regular performance reviews can help determine the extent of an employee’s career growth and the motivation with which he or she contributes to a company’s success.
Performance appraisal helps an employee understand where he or she stands in relation to other employees in the organization.
Performance evaluation, which allows employers to assess the contribution of their employees to the company, is essential to the development of a strong work team. However, in some offices, physicians and office managers put performance evaluation in the background, often because of the time and difficulty of criticizing the employees with whom they work closely. However, the benefits of performance evaluation outweigh these challenges. When conducted as part of a performance appraisal system that includes a standard appraisal form, standard performance measures, feedback guidelines, and disciplinary procedures, performance appraisals can enforce acceptable performance limits, promote employee recognition and effective communication, and motivate people to do their best for themselves and their practice.
The main objectives of a performance appraisal system are to fairly measure an employee’s contribution to the workforce, to produce accurate appraisal documents to protect employees and employers, and to achieve a high level of quality and quantity in the work performed.
To create a performance evaluation system in your practice, follow these five steps:
It is also recommended that your lawyer run the system to identify legal issues that could be resolved.
Performance evaluations must be fair, consistent and objective in order to protect the interests of your employees and protect your practice from legal liability. One way to ensure consistency is to use only one evaluation form for each evaluation. The form you use should only cover the essential aspects of work performance. Restricting these areas of interest makes the assessment more meaningful and relevant and allows you and the employee to address the issues that are most important. It is not necessary to include all the details of an employee’s performance in an evaluation.
For most positions, the performance areas that should be included in a performance evaluation form are knowledge and skills, work quality, scope of work, work habits and attitudes. In each area, the evaluator must be able to choose from a range of descriptors (for example, below requirements and exceeds requirements). Depending on the level of detail of the descriptors, it is often important that the assessor also has a space on the form to justify his or her assessment. (Click below for a one-page evaluation form that covers these critical performance areas without overwhelming the assessor or examiner.)
Standard performance measures, which allow you to objectively assess an employee’s work performance, can reduce the time and stress associated with writing the evaluation form. While the development of these measures can be one of the longest steps in creating a performance measurement system, it is also one of the most powerful.
If you have up-to-date work descriptions for each position in your practice, you have already taken the first step towards developing standardized performance measures, which are essentially specific quantitative and qualitative objectives related to the tasks listed in a work description. A job description alone can be used as a measurement tool during an evaluation if, for example, you determine whether an employee’s qualifications match the requirements of the position. But standard performance measures go beyond the job description. For example, one of the tasks listed in a receptionist’s work description could be to enter new patient registrations and updates into the computer.
Feedback is the purpose of performance reviews. So before implementing your performance appraisal system, make sure that everyone who will do the assessments knows what kind of feedback they should give, how they should give it, and how they can get it in return from the employee.
Provide balanced feedback: Do not make the usual mistake of ignoring an employee’s shortcomings and focusing only on his or her strengths. By understanding their weaknesses, employees can take their performance and role in practice into their own hands. And when they get the support they need to make improvements in these areas, they learn to be proud of their work and are ready to face new challenges with confidence.
Describe your expectations for improvement. When discussing areas where improvement is needed, describe your expectations for improvement and how you want to help the employee achieve them. For example, if an employee talks harshly to other employees and does not appear tolerant of patients, give them examples of their behavior and suggest solutions such as role-plays, a workshop or a seminar on communication skills and customer service. Define the boundaries by telling the employee what is acceptable and what is not, and then create a performance monitoring and reassessment plan for the employee.
Encourage employee feedback: After discussing the results of the assessment with the employee, encourage them to give you nondefensive feedback. Ask the employee if he or she agrees with your assessment or request suggestions for improvement. For example: “You seem to become impatient and walk with patients when the doctor is late. Since there are times when you can’t avoid being late, how can you do that to avoid such a reaction? This should lead to an open exchange of information that allows you and the employee to better understand each other’s perspective.
In some cases, an employee will continue to perform poorly even after a thorough performance review and discussion of planned improvements. You must be prepared to deal with such a situation by putting in place well-defined and written disciplinary and dismissal procedures. These procedures should describe the actions that will be taken if performance deteriorates an oral warning, a written warning if there is no improvement or recurrence, and termination if the situation is not finally resolved.
Oral warning: This should be done in private, clearly indicating the conduct or reason for the disciplinary action. For example: “I saw you talking disrespectfully to another employee at the reception desk. They said she was brain dead and threw a file at her. We will not tolerate a lack of respect in the workplace. In addition, this outbreak could be heard from the reception room. If this is still the case, a report will be created and added to your folder. Do you understand how important this is?” After the verbal warning, let the employee respond, but keep the discussion brief.
Written warning: The processing of the written warning plays a crucial role in the success of your disciplinary and dismissal proceedings. It is now time to clearly explain to the employee how serious his or her performance problem is. Unfortunately, many practices do not succeed in doing so and/or, if necessary, put an end to it. Once the written reminder is abused in this way, it no longer has any value. A standard written warning form should include the following elements:
Termination: Explain the reason for the termination, but do so briefly and objectively to avoid a detailed discussion that will put you in a defensive position. Validate the employee as a person, perhaps through a positive perspective on the employee’s potential in the job market. For example, although an employee may have been a bad clerk for you because he or she did not pay attention to details, the employee may have a friendly personality that would make him or her a good telephone operator. In addition, you inform the employee about what happens to accumulated annual leave or illness, pension benefits, and so on. Know your state’s laws on these matters. Finally, ask the employee if he has any further questions and then helps him recover all his possessions and leave with as much dignity as possible. If you handle your termination correctly, it is less likely that you will have an employee who wants to “take revenge” by denigrating you in the community or committing legal vengeance.
Once you have put in place your performance appraisal system — the appraisal form, performance measures, feedback guidelines, and disciplinary procedures — all you have to do is decide when you want to do the performance appraisals. Some practices conduct all employee tests at the same time each year, while others do so within 30 days of each employee’s employment anniversary (the employee can function better by splitting the work of the tests between employers and employees). Regardless of your decision to plan evaluations, make sure that each evaluator consistently meets the deadlines. If you ignore late employee reviews, they will feel undervalued and can have an impact on morale and performance.
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