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Why 360 Degree Performance Reviews Matter

October 3rd, 2021 / Haroon Juma / HR & Payroll Blogs

360-degree Performance Reviews

Performance reviews are an essential component of any good performance management plan. While line responsible supervisor performance evaluations offer direct feedback, obtaining feedback from many different sources is a more effective approach to employee development. Suppliers, customers, or different organization levels and departmental feedback can provide a more comprehensive understanding of performance.

360-degree performance reviews have gained increased importance over the years. In the past, performance reviews were conducted by direct line management, and other inputs were seldomly used to avoid the use of additional time and resources. This has now changed.

360-degree performance reviews are increasingly frequent across all levels of a business, driven mainly by evolving and cost-effective technologies. Now that managing 360 performance is accessible, it is important for corporates, big or small, to acquaint themselves with the benefits of this approach. In this blog, we will look at the reasons why and how companies assess and improve employee performance.

What does a good 360-feedback platform look like?

An ideal platform allows stakeholders at all levels – including leadership, managers, peers, and direct subordinates – to submit feedback in real-time so that the 360-degree performance reviews process is simplified.

The review platform must fit your organization’s performance management model, streamline the review process regardless of whether you decide to deliver reviews on an annual, mid-year, quarterly, or ongoing basis.

It should allow the integration between performance management, employee management, and employee development so that organizations can set and achieve goals that align teams and drive growth.

How to conduct a 360 Review?

1. Optimize & automate feedback – using online tools, ideally embedded in the HRM system will simplify, control and retain feedback
2. Establish evaluation criteria for each employee – for example leadership, communication, teamwork, creativity, interpersonal skills, etc.
3. Designate the people who are to evaluate each employee
4. Provide a survey for respondents (anonymous or not) – At least a week before the review takes place, send an email inviting employees to complete it, so they have time to provide valuable feedback.
5. Send the employee the same survey for self-evaluation
6. Schedule a date and time for the 360-degree evaluation
7. Monitor and keep track of progress – control and remind participants to generate their feedback
8. Set development goals– ensure competency and skills gaps lead to planned development objectives

What benefits can this deliver?

1. Receiving feedback from multiple levels – A traditional review consists of an employee receiving feedback from one person – his direct supervisor. A 360-degree review consists of feedback from multiple people at multiple levels. This diverse set of employee feedback creates a more comprehensive and insightful view of performance.

2. Identify developmental needs – One of the major advantages of 360-degree feedback is that individuals and organizations can use this process to identify better developmental needs. As feedback is consolidated into a 360-degree view, common themes become apparent. This can guide employees in identifying areas for growth and development.

For instance, when an employee receives feedback from multiple sources to improve their time management skills, there is no doubt that time management is an opportunity for development. With their manager’s help, they can then set goals and develop a plan to facilitate their growth.

3. Top and bottom reviews – One can improve the effectiveness of their development by seeing how each group of people perceives them in a 360 review. For example, if the manager sees them as a phenomenal manager, but their subordinates see them otherwise, they should focus on building their team relationship and improving their leadership skills. Alternatively, if they were experiencing the opposite, they might assess why the manager’s expectations are not being met.

4. Upward feedback – Managers who receive 360-degree feedback perform better and employees benefit greatly from providing reviews. By giving employees a safe forum to provide upward feedback, 360 reviews make managers accountable for their decisions and provide the necessary insight to better manage their teams.

5. Trustworthiness360 Feedback is perceived as being more trustworthy by employees. Some find it difficult to deliver challenging feedback face-to-face. As a result, employees might question the validity of the feedback during traditional performance appraisals. Development goals are undermined if a manager tells an employee they’re great at their job during the review and the employee thinks the manager is just uncomfortable with sharing flaws.

Because 360-degree performance reviews provide a variety of perspectives, and because the feedback from the process is generally anonymous, employees are more likely to trust the feedback they receive during the 360 reviews.

No matter how big or small your company is, 360-degree training is likely to be beneficial for you. It increases employee engagement and improves employee performance.

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