Setting up an appraisal scheme
Appraisals can be a wonderful opportunity for your staff tofocus on their jobs and make plans to develop their unusedpotential. (0) ..........So, if you have decided that an appraisalscheme should be set up in your company, you need toestablish some formal procedures and make some decisionsbefore you begin. Even if your company already has a scheme,you need to consider what you want to achieve and how youare going to do this.
First of all, you need to decide on your key objectives and the real purpose of yourscheme.(8).............A scheme should never be introduced at a time of redundancies, or simply forprofit or competitive edge, because this will create fear and alienate staff. The next step is to decidehow the scheme can most successfully be managed. It is essential that all senior staff arecommitted to the process and willing to make a positive contribution.
The person given responsibility for designing the scheme and the appraisal forms needs tohave knowledge of all roles within the organisation. He or she must also be aware of employees'potential needs. (9).............It should be someone who is trusted and whom staff will turn to if theyare concerned about their appointed appraiser or the appraisal interview. The design of the schemeshould indicate who will be appraising whom. This needs great tact and sensitivity. First, rememberthat no manager can effectively appraise more than seven or eight people. It is equally importantto remember that, if significant numbers of staff are appraised by someone they dislike, or by aperson whose values they do not share, the success of your scheme may be threatened.(10) ............. So bear this in mind from the beginning and, if necessary, establish an appeals procedure.
Having decided on your policy and who will appraise which members of staff, you need tocommunicate this in the simplest possible way. Avoid lengthy documents - few people will readthem. (11)..............Most organisations choose a person's line manager to be the appraiser. This canbe seen as an opportunity or a threat, so be ready to consider alternatives if necessary.
Once you have established the appraisal process, make sure that appraisal interviews takeplace at a convenient time, and ideally on neutral ground. It should be borne in mind that someappraisals may involve the disclosure of confidential information. (12) .............These will show thedecisions that were taken during the interview and will also indicate any new performance targetsthat have been agreed.
A It is important to select a manager who can deal effectively with any suspicions staffmay have about appraisals.
B Such a measure can also reduce insecurity and unite staff in recognising the positiveelements of appraisal.
C Having even one staff member in such a position may affect how others respond to theprocess.
D Ideally, this should be to provide a supportive framework that aids staff development.
E Simply make sure that staff know who will appraise them and why, and what form theinterview will take.
F It is therefore important to decide who will have access to written records of the appraisal.
G They can also be a means of getting the best out of staff, both as individuals, and as teammembers.