Abolishing Annual Appraisals


Performance appraisals have traditionally been considered the best way to evaluate an employee’s performance, but increasingly organisations are finding them of little value. Employees find them stressful, unhelpful, and they also take up a lot of time. When Deloitte analysed their own process, they found managers and employees spent around 2 million hours a year on performance reviews.

A growing number of companies have decided to abolish performance reviews altogether, instead introducing more regular catch-ups. Software company Adobe Systems used to hold annual reviews for staff, collecting 360-degree evaluations for each team member. In 2012, a decision was made to switch to a “check-in” process where managers meet with staff at least once a quarter and discuss expectations, feedback, and growth and development.

Since this change, Adobe has seen a 30% decrease in the number of employees leaving – and recovered the thousands of hours managers and employees had been spending on their reviews.

What can you do in your organisation?

It is important for line managers to establish regular one-to-one time with employees and understand their views on everything from their own objectives and performance to company leadership and the culture of the business. Regular feedback ensures staff can address any concerns immediately, rather than waiting months and allowing any potential issues to get worse.

The same rule applies for praising staff during regular catch-ups instead of gathering positive feedback for a one-off annual review. Receiving regular positive feedback allows employees to feel valued by the organisation and recognised when they do a good job.

Source: The Guardian

For advice on staff management and appraisal processes for your company, please contact the Starford team on 01342 347063 or email julie.jones@starfordlegalhr.com