Combine the performance appraisal interview and the assessment interview? This works much better!

by Danique Geskus | Sep 27, 2023

It sounds ideal and nice and easy, you merge the performance review with the performance review so you’re done in one go. You see your employee every day anyway so you know perfectly well how that employee functions. It saves time, is efficient and you can tick something off your to do list again. Or is this not such a good idea after all?


Combining a performance review and an appraisal review

In practice, it often happens that a conversation about an employee’s performance and the conversation about assessing an employee are combined. Basically, it comes down to not having the performance review. The benefit of this is the time it saves, because as an executive, your to-do list is incredibly long. Only there are quite a few drawbacks to skipping a performance appraisal interview. Both the purpose of the interviews and the form of the interviews differ. First, it is important to discern the purpose of the conversations. In fact, the performance appraisal interview is a two-way conversation. Input and feedback from both the supervisor and the employee are important.


Why is skipping the performance review such a bad idea?

Too often it is forgotten that a performance appraisal is the perfect time to ask for feedback on the manager’s performance. Of course, it is not just about the employee’s own performance. During this moment, the employee can give tips and tops about the supervisor’s direction; an opportunity to take their own performance to the next level.

In addition, chances are that the employee will be quite surprised if during the appraisal interview it is revealed that the appraisal is (partially) unsatisfactory if no feedback or areas for improvement have been indicated during the year. At that point, there will also be nothing an employee can do to make improvements in the way he or she performs.

In the event that an employee is doing just fine and there are no comments or criticisms about the employee’s performance, it is rather disappointing to hear that only once a year. After all, appreciation and attention are very important in an employee’s personal growth and development and motivation to (continue to) do their job well.

A study conducted by Gartner on the impact of eliminating performance reviews indicates that employee engagement drops significantly (-6%) when performance reviews are not conducted.


Why not combine but adapt to a modern HR cycle?

Combining the performance review and the appraisal review is not a good idea, that much is clear. So what can you do to make these conversations streamlined and give the employee enough room for personal development?

Breathe new life into the appraisal cycle with “the good talk,” have frequent conversations with your employees about development and goals, and move to “the new appraisal. The premise of this form of assessment is that traditional performance and appraisal interviews are replaced by an ongoing dialogue between employee and manager.

The focus here is on the employee’s strengths and making employees accountable for their business goals and developments. You do this by conducting modern development interviews.

These conversations between manager and employee about career, skills, development, goals and sustainable employability, among other things, take place up to four times a year. With an HR cycle centered on this continuous dialogue, you know what’s going on and can provide the employee with constructive feedback in a coaching role rather than just judging.

This is how IT company Tensing sees a whopping 34% increase in the number of goals set after implementing Learned: “Achieving the goal immediately gives people more motivation to start on a new goal. We also see this reflected in the use of Learned. We see that employees log in between five and ten times a month on average!”


The result of an ongoing dialogue

From research conducted by Gallup among companies that have implemented continuous dialogue, we know that this modern form of assessment can yield tremendously positive results.

Companies that invest in an ongoing dialogue in which the manager and employee engage with each other on an ongoing basis see employee engagement increase by up to 280%. This high level of employee engagement reduces absenteeism and increases job satisfaction. It also creates employees who are optimally developed and therefore perform better. And that’s what Learned stands for!

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