Any performance management process is based on simple framework.
- Performance Planning, or Target Setting (KRA*, KPI**, Measures)
- Performance Review (Review – Feedback – Appraisal – Related decisions.)
If you want to bring objectivity in your performance management process, you have to ensure that the performance planning exercise assigns tasks and related targets to employees based on a mature set of work processes. If the processes are not well defined and adequately institutionalised, then the idea of objective measures will need to be dropped till your business has the same in place.
If you still want objectivity – you can start with some thing simple till then – the process concerned could be as simple as a 2-3 line checklist, or various stages of work, with expectations related to completion.
To be able to have an objective measure there has to be a well-defined, institutionalised – accepted and a live – running process for the concerned work area, project, function. The process should be in a position to turn up data points at each of the critical stages that need to be assessed. The data points could be in form of:
- timelines of completion,
- quality or delivery, or
- milestones achieved.
The metrics related to the process and relevant to any job / role that has some part to play in the process – either as a process owner or contributor or dependent on the same, should be well defined and should be derivable from the data generated from the process. The relevant metrics, should me meaningful and relevant – as in, tracking of the same should lead to some value in form of action planning, process improvement, business productivity, people productivity etc. Metrics could be:
- variations in data over time, process runs etc.
- increase or decrease in an outcome or incident
- incidents related to process stop
- compliance / noncompliance related to process step
It helps if the processes are tracked and related data is generated in an automated manner (system generated) to enable easy availability and accuracy of data. This also helps ensure that time and additional cost is not spent on collecting data. If some data is manually tracked, it helps if the related MIS is updated frequently and in a disciplined manner so as there is continuity and availability of data for analysis and generation of metrics.
In any organisation, as processes mature, the possibility of bringing objectivity in the performance and productivity measures increase. Hope, these insights will help you think and plan on bringing objectivity around your process.
The above pointers can be relevant to a business of any size, and any industry or any role. If the above helped you or if you want to share some thoughts or your business problems send us a line.
*KRA – Key Result Areas, these are the objectives on which an employee is expected to work. **KPI – Key Performance Indicators, these are one or more indicators related to each KRA, that allows an understanding if the KRA’s related targets are met and to what extent.