Featured Product
This Week in Quality Digest Live
Customer Care Features
John Courtney
How to keep your customers coming back
Alixandra Barasch
The key is keeping them alive
Elizabeth Gasiorowski Denis
An inclusive approach to designing products and services guarantees accessibility to as many consumers as possible
Tamara Sheldon
EV subsidies are poorly designed, but simple changes could make them more effective and equitable
Kate Zabriskie
Leaders who engage don’t do so by accident or without work

More Features

Customer Care News
Now is not the time to skip critical factory audits and supply chain assessments
EPM service provider excels in helping customers work with EPM products
Extends focus on data-driven explainability and adds customizability
Covid-19 has taken a toll but also stimulated positive change
An early warning system lets Arctic people know when bears approach
Partnership embeds quality assurance at every stage of the product life cycle, enables agile product introduction
Both quality professionals and their business leaders agree that openness and communication is essential to moving forward
Good quality is adding an average of 11 percent to organizations’ revenue growth
Chick-fil-A leads; Chipotle Mexican Grill stabilizes

More News

Annette Franz

Customer Care

Continuous Feedback Is the New Way Forward for Employee Reviews

Bringing employees into the fold

Published: Monday, October 22, 2018 - 12:02

Traditionally, managers have relied on the annual performance review to provide employees with feedback. However, surveys indicate employees don’t find the process valuable. Simply meeting once a year to discuss their progress doesn’t give employees a thorough sense of their own performance. It also doesn’t give them many opportunities to offer valuable feedback to their supervisors.

That’s why managers are shifting to a continuous feedback approach. With the right tools, like 360 performance evaluation, staying in contact with your workers (even if they work remotely) and regularly updating them on their progress is easier than ever.

The benefits of continuous feedback

Continuous feedback addresses many of the shortcomings of annual performance reviews. First, it allows managers to provide feedback when they have a stronger overall recollection of an employee’s recent performance.

Trying to remember how a worker has performed over the course of a year is difficult. This results in vague feedback during annual review sessions. When supervisors check in on a weekly or biweekly basis, they can offer more specific advice.

The organization also benefits when managers provide continuous feedback. Regular check-ins give managers more chances to confirm their employees are focused on the appropriate objectives. If employees aren’t making the expected progress or perhaps are focusing on the wrong priorities, managers can point them in the right direction before they waste too much time and resources on tasks that may not be essentially valuable to the business.

Surveyed workers directly state they believe annual performance reviews don’t help them better understand what their objectives should be. With continuous performance, this may not be a problem.

Additionally, annual performance reviews have a negative impact on the relationship employees have with their supervisors. It creates a power dynamic that prevents employees from feeling comfortable with having a genuine discussion about their performance.

This is particularly true for the many employees who feel they don’t necessarily understand how the annual performance review impacts their employment. Does it correspond to their pay? Does it impact their job security? Since they aren’t sure what the actual goal of the performance review is, they’re not open during any potential discussions. They’re likely to be on their guard during the process.

This isn’t the case with continuous feedback. When supervisors and their employees check in with each other on a regular basis, everyone quickly becomes much more comfortable and sees the value in the experience. Employees can spend less time worrying about what the feedback means for their pay or job security and spend more time actually listening to and acting on the feedback. Additionally, they get the chance to share their own thoughts with a supervisor.

It’s clear that many people don’t like annual performance reviews. Employees worry about them, human resources professionals believe they’re expensive, and supervisors struggle to make the process valuable. Clearly, an effective replacement will offer more benefits to your organization. Continuous feedback is that replacement.

“One may develop the most technically sophisticated, accurate appraisal system, but if that system is not accepted and supported by employees, its effectiveness ultimately will be limited.” —Gallup

First published Sept. 26, 2018, on the CX Journey blog.

Discuss

About The Author

Annette Franz’s picture

Annette Franz

Annette Franz, CCXP is founder and CEO of CX Journey Inc. She’s got 25 years of experience in both helping companies understand their employees and customers and identifying what drives retention, satisfaction, engagement, and the overall experience – so that, together, we can design a better experience for all constituents. She's an author (she wrote the book on customer understanding!), a speaker, and a customer experience thought leader and influencer. She serves as Vice Chairwoman on the Board of Directors of the Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA), is an official member of the Forbes Coaches Council, and is an Advisory Board member for CX@Rutgers.

Comments

Performance Reviews

Only confirms the 1963 MIT Sloan articleby GE. Nothing new.