A performance appraisal is a systematic and periodic process that assesses an individual employee’s job performance and productivity in relation to certain pre-established criteria and organizational objectives. Historically, performance Appraisal has been conducted annually (long-cycle appraisals), however many companies are moving towards shorter cycles (every six months, every quarter), and some have been moving into short-cycle (weekly, bi-weekly) appraisals. PA is often included in performance management systems. PA helps the subordinate answer two key questions; first, "What are your expectations of me?" second, "How am I doing to meet your expectations?" Performance management systems are employed “to manage and align" all of an organization's resources in order to achieve highest possible performance. How performance is managed in an organization determines to a large extent the success or failure of the organization. Therefore, improving PA for everyone should be among the highest priorities of contemporary organizations. A central reason for the utilization of performance appraisals is performance improvement initially at the level of the individual employee, and ultimately at the level of the organization. Other fundamental reasons include “as a basis for employment decisions (e.g. promotions, terminations, transfers), as criteria in research (e.g. test validation), to aid with communication to establish personal objectives for training programs, for transmission of objective feedback for personal development as a means of documentation to aid in keeping track of decisions and legal requirements and in wage and salary administration. Additionally, PAs can aid in the formulation of job criteria and selection of individuals “who are best suited to perform the required organizational tasks”. A PA can be part of guiding and monitoring employee career development. PAs can also be used to aid in work motivation through the use of reward systems. The latest mantra being followed by organizations across the world being – "get paid according to what you contribute" – the focus of the organizations is turning to performance management and specifically to individual performance. If the process of performance appraisals is formal and properly structured, it helps the employees to clearly understand their roles and responsibilities and give direction to the individual’s performance. Potential benefits
PAs can benefit an organization’s effectiveness. One way is PAs can often lead to giving individual workers feedback about their job performance. From this may spawn several potential benefits such as the individual workers becoming more productivity. Other potential benefits include:
* Facilitation of communication: communication in organizations is considered an essential function of worker motivation. It has been proposed that feedback from PAs aid in minimizing employees’ perceptions of uncertainty. Fundamentally, feedback and management-employee communication can serve as a guide in job performance. * Enhancement of employee focus through promoting trust: behaviors, thoughts, or issues may distract employees from their work, and trust issues may be among these distracting factors. Such factors that consume psychological energy can lower job performance and cause workers to lose sight of organizational goals. Properly constructed and utilized PAs have the ability to lower distracting factors and encourage trust within the organization. * Goal setting and desired performance: PAs provide room for discussion in the collaboration of these individual and organizational goals. Collaboration can also be advantageous by resulting in employee acceptance and satisfaction of appraisal results. * Performance improvement: well constructed PAs can be valuable tools for communication with employees as pertaining to how their job performance stands with organizational expectations. “At the organizational...
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