Appraising Performance


consists of observable behavior


evaluation of the results of performance and it is beyond the influence or control of the individual

Performance appraisal

assessing performance to make decisions

Why we need it

Enhance the quality of organizational decisions

promotions, raises, discharges

provide employees with realistic feedback on training and work

can increase employee commitment and satisfaction

provide legally defensible tool for personnel decisions


be standardized and formally communicated to all

provide motive of performance deficiencies and corrective measures

provide employees access to results and formal appeal process

use multiple, diverse, and unbiased raters

provide written instructions for raters and require documentation with specific examples

establish indicators of abuses in system

The criteria gathered from Job Assessment or similar resources serve as the criteria for appraisals


Personnel training

wage and salary administration



personnel research

Performance appraisal and the law


breach of duty to conduct appraisals with due car


disclosure of untrue unfavorable performance information that damages the reputation of the employee


disclosure of untrue favorable performance info that presents a risk of harm to prospective employees or third parties

Theory of person perception


characteristic of the perceiver, characteristics of the person being perceived (the target) and contextual factors


broad range of variables pertaining to the way the perceiver uses info to make a judgment


the consequences of the processing to the perceiver and the target


used to understand people in situations where the perceiver is confronted with incomplete or ambiguous info

Types of data used:

objective production data

not applicable in all jobs

assess elements beyond employee performance

personnel data

usually absenteeism and accidents

considered to be related to performance

judgmental data

Rater Training

rating error focus

frame of reference training

involves providing raters with common reference standards

Rater Motivation

Willingness versus Capacity to rate

“appraisal politics”


prone to errors (halo, leniency, central-tendency)


Raters evaluations based on general opinions about an employee (ratee)

Valid Halo


raters tend to rate higher or lower than actual ratee performance


raters tend to evaluate all ratees towards the middle of the scale

Graphic Rating Scale

most commonly used

individuals are rated on a number of traits or factors

5 to 7 point scale with 5 to 20 factors

Example dimensions

Quantity and quality of work, job knowledge, and cooperation

no protection from rating errors

Employee-comparison Methods

compare individuals against peers

eliminate central-tendency and leniency errors

rank order method

employees ranked high to low on performance

Difficult with large numbers of employees

Image via Wikipedia (Paired Comparison Matrices)
paired comparison method

employee compared to all other employees

time consuming

forced distribution method

rate all employees on distribution

behavioral checklist and scales
observable behaviors

critical incidents – behaviors that result in good or poor job performance

behaviorally anchored rating scales (BARS)

rating scale is anchored with behavioral incidents

BARS are job specific and require a lot fo SME’s

development is time extensive

but employee perceptions of fairness is enhances


Employees may exhibit different behaviors on any given dimensions (behaviors that are not included in BARS)

contextual performance

organizational citizenship behaviors


leniency errors

peer assessments

reliable (.8 – .9) and valid (.4 – .5)

Friendship and adoption issues

360-degree feedback

derives from the geometric rationale for multiple rater assessment

Usually along three dimensions




supervisor, subordinates, peer and self-rating



solicit employee input

two-way communication

opportunity to challenge/rebut

rater familiarity with employees’ work

consistent application of performance standards

based on actual performance

used as recommendations for salary/promotion



performance development

assessing performance to provide feedback and facilitate improvement

Performance management

combination of appraisal and development

the process that incorporates appraisal and feedback to make performance-based administrative decisions and help employees improve

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