Why Continuous Feedback is a Must!

Posted by Judy Fort Kristen Monsey on June 9, 2017

Agency Collaboration

Performance reviews are a stressful time for everyone involved – HR has to chase people down, managers have to recall loads of information for those reporting to them, and employees worry about getting valid feedback.  Every one of these groups knows that reviews are a necessary evil – but what if there was something that could help this process evolve from utter chaos once a year to a more organized ongoing effort? Good news, there is!

Continuous feedback takes place when, instead of (or in addition to) the annual review, companies encourage or require more regularly feedback sessions between employees and their managers.  These could be 1-on-1 meetings, or could be meetings scheduled specifically to discuss performance. Either way – they are set to provide more consistent performance conversations that help managers’ document performance throughout the year instead of focusing on a specific point in time.

What’s wrong with the old way of doing annual reviews? Well, for one thing, expecting to compile a whole year’s worth of feedback and data can be a daunting task to say the least. What ends up happening is that the information recorded tends to reflect only the past couple months or even weeks, and doesn’t give a clear view of an employee’s overall performance. The information tends to be vague or outdated, and leaves the employee either feeling underappreciated for their overall performance or unfairly judged based on a fraction of their work.

During a recent webinar, Making the Move to Project-Based Performance Appraisals, attendees provided some very insightful feedback on what they liked about their current processes, what they didn’t like, and whether or not they believe the process is fair. Here are a few of their responses:

  • “I didn’t feel like my boss really knew what I did.”
  • “The process was very judgmental and not based on fact.”
  • “The process is complicated, delayed and tedious.”
  • “It was an outstanding overall review, but not realistic.”
  • “Our managers do not take the reviews seriously.”
  • “I had no input into future goals. Goals were assigned that were unrealistic.”
  • “My manager doesn’t remember things I did a few months ago that met established goals.”

It’s fairly clear to everyone involved that the annual review process is broken and fails to provide an accurate picture of the organization’s talent performance. Continuous feedback throughout the year provides the managers and the employees with a way to document and track their performance on an ongoing basis, set more short term realistic goals, and ultimately more closely align employee goals and performance with the company’s strategic goals.

For more information on this topic and to see a brief demo of how Deltek Talent Performance provides the functionality for continuous feedback, you can watch the recording of the webinar, Making the Move to Project-Based Performance Appraisals.