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Aims & Methods PAS PDF Print E-mail
Written by Angela Tan, Taiwan   
Friday, 30 September 2011 18:14



Generally, the aims of a performance appraisal are to:

  • Give employees feedback on performance
  • Identify employee training needs
  • Document criteria used to allocate organizational rewards
  • Form a basis for personnel decisions: salary increases, promotionsdisciplinary actions, bonuses, etc.
  • Provide the opportunity for organizational diagnosis and development
  • Facilitate communication between employee and employer
  • Validate selection techniques and human resource policies to meet federal Equal Employment Opportunity requirements.
  • To improve performance through counseling, coaching and development.


A common approach to assessing performance is to use a numerical or scalar rating system whereby managers are asked to score an individual against a number of objectives/attributes. In some companies, employees receive assessments from their manager, peers, subordinates, and customers, while also performing a self assessment This is known as a 360-degree appraisal and forms good communication patterns.

The most popular methods used in the performance appraisal process include the following:

  • Management by objectives
  • 360-degree appraisal
  • Behavioral observation scale
  • Behaviorally anchored rating scales

Trait-based systems, which rely on factors such as integrity and conscientiousness, are also used by businesses but have been replaced primarily by more objective and results-oriented methods. The scientific literature on the subject provides evidence that assessing employees on factors such as these should be avoided. The reasons for this are twofold:

1) Trait-based systems are by definition based on personality traits and as such may not be related directly to successful job performance. In addition, personality dimensions tend to be static, and while an employee can change a behavior they cannot change their personality. For example, a person who lacks integrity may stop lying to a manager because they have been caught, but they still have low integrity and are likely to lie again when the threat of being caught is gone.

2) Trait-based systems, because they are vague, are more easily influenced by office politics, causing them to be less reliable as a source of information on an employee's true performance. The vagueness of these instruments allows managers to assess the employee based upon subjective feelings instead of objective observations about how the employee has performed his or her specific duties. These systems are also more likely to leave a company open to discrimination claims because a manager can make biased decisions without having to back them up with specific behavioral information.



            360-degree appraisal




Last Updated on Thursday, 03 November 2011 17:51
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