How to Write a Performance Review

How to Write a Performance Review

If you are pursuing business, human resources or managerial studies, you need to know how to write a performance review. A performance review refers to employee’s performance appraisal, performance evaluation or a development discussion. It is a method of evaluating and documenting an employee’s job performance. A performance evaluation is part of the career development process and it comprises of regular employee’s performance reviews in the organization-

Performance reviews are very important because they help in keeping employees on track and in rewarding them when they perform better. They are also used in addressing issues of substandard workers who should be encouraged- how performance appraisal can increase employee performance. Performance reviews can be conducted annually or after some months depending on the company. The goals that the company set during the previous performance review or when an employee started working for a company are considered during the review-

How to write a performance review in eight simple steps

Familiarize yourself with forms and processes of performance review

Improvements or changes are made by human resource groups every year on how to conduct performance reviews. Find out what changes such groups have made and if your organization has also made changes. Find out if your organization has forms that you can use, tasks and steps that should be involved in writing a performance review. If you are writing a performance review for academic purposes, read the assignment prompt. This is very important because your professor may have specified the style that should be followed in writing the review such as a conversational or blog style. Ensure that you first familiarize yourself with the specific expectations of your professor- performance review pdf.

Review the employee’s progress

Most organizations have log sheets where they record the performance of employees throughout the year. A properly kept log sheet has information about the performance of every employee in different projects. This provides a clear picture of the value of an employee to the organization. It acts as a vital fact sheet that provides information that can be used in reviewing the performance of an employee. To write a good performance review, go through such a record so that you can recall the negative actions and positive accomplishments that the employee has made since the previous performance appraisal. This will provide an accurate account of the actual performance of an employee.

Compare self-evaluation of the employee with your annual notes

You can either give employees notes to fill that will reflect self-evaluation or conduct a one-on-one performance review meeting. This will enable you to determine how the employees perceive or consider their performances. Compare their self-evaluation of the employees with the notes that you have been keeping about their performances. If you hold a one-one meeting with the employees, recap the things that the organization addressed that year during the meeting. If there were problems with the actions or habits of an employee, address them to ensure that there are no tensions while conducting or writing a performance review-

Get the views of other employees

You can gather performance ratings and feedback anonymously from other employees who work closely with the employee whose performance is being reviewed. You can employ the 360 degree performance feedback system. This is a system that allows managers to get confidential feedback from individuals who work with an employee- It is important to know how this process works as you strive to know how to write a performance review because it gives feedback about an employee from those within their work circle.

Write a draft or summary of the performance review

Using information from those within the circle of an employee, employee’s self evaluation and your annual notes, write a summary or first draft of the performance review. The information from self-evaluation and that from others within the circles of the employee can remind you important aspects of the performance of an employee that you may have forgotten-

Use the information from all sources to come up with a summary or the first draft of the performance review.

Come up with a final draft that documents everything

Write a final draft of the employee’s performance review that includes everything. Update the draft with facts or aspects of the performance of the employees received from their co-workers which they may have reminded you. While writing the final draft, compare the duties that the employee was assigned as per their job description and their actual performance. Make sure that your review has evaluated the performance of the employee only. Although the company or organization has many employees who might all be performing equally, you may personally like some workers than others. Therefore, make sure that you are objective in your review –

Create the employee’s developmental plan

A good performance review should facilitate career development. The developmental plan should be aimed at improving the performance of an employee by addressing issues that may be hindering them from performing optimally. If during the performance review meeting the employees expressed their concerns while highlighting areas where they need support, include that in their developmental plan section of the performance review-

Also suggest the appropriate timing for performance review since reviewing the performance of employees should be a continuous managerial activity.

Edit the performance review

After writing your review, edit it thoroughly to ensure that it is free of errors. Check the review for typo, grammatical, spelling and factual errors.

Structure of a performance review

Anybody who knows how to write a performance review took time to master its structure. A performance review should be structured as follows- performance review pdf.

  • Introduction

In the introduction of your performance review, describe the place, time and type of the event to the reader. Include the performance title if possible and a description of the venue.

  • Description

This is the body of the review. Be specific in the body. Include the discussion of all aspects of the performance of the employee. For instance, if the employee was involved in a project, describe their performance in that project. Be specific and use field-specific descriptions or language. If you have notes of that project, you can use them as your general guide for writing the review.

  • Evaluation

In the evaluation section of the review, provide your opinions and thoughts. For instance, give your opinion about a section of an employee’s performance that can be singled out as the best. Tell the readers why you consider it the best.

  • Conclusion

Just like with other forms of writing, do not include new information in the conclusion. Summarize all impressions and thoughts in the conclusion. Ensure that your conclusion refers the reader to the prompt of the performance review.

More tips on how to write a performance review that depicts professionalism

You may know how to write a performance review but not how to write a great review. Here are tips that will enable you to come up with a great review of an employee’s performance:

  • Be objective

Objectivity is the foundation of a good performance review. Do not include blanket statements when describing the character, competence or intelligence of an employee. Instead, use evidence to prove your case. Do not get emotional because a performance appraisal is a subjective task-

  • Be specific

Provide examples of bad and good performance in the performance review. Do not use vague concepts to critique employees. For instance, do not use professionalism as a concept. Instead, highlight cases when an employee depicted lack of professionalism such as wearing inappropriate attire, arriving late or missing deadlines.

  • Be honest and positive when criticizing employees

Be direct and clear while giving positive and constructive criticism in the review. If an employee portrayed good behaviors and improved performance praise such aspects in the review. Mention any outstanding work of the employee-

  • Solicit feedback in advance

You might think that you are familiar with your employees as well as their performance levels but there might be aspects that you may not know. Avoid getting information from the management team’s members because this is unprofessional. Instead, use a 360 degrees performance review method to get information from the management or coworkers of an employee-

End the performance review positively by encouraging the employees. Let them know that their efforts are appreciated in order to lift their spirit.

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