Sarah Thomas

Performance reviews and employee evaluations are an integral part of the HR and management process. They are a key factor to track performance and an excellent way to ensure that the entire company is constantly demonstrating values that align with the company culture. With the ongoing COVID pandemic and many companies working entirely remote, performance reviews must take place virtually to keep everyone safe. Utilize these tips to conduct employee evaluations that are engaging, effective, and valuable for both parties while taking into account the difficult situation due to the pandemic.

Be Consistent

As an HR representative or manager, it is important that you’re treating your entire team or the company as a whole fairly. To treat everyone fairly, you must be consistent. Choose the same scale that you’re applying to judge performance and the same evaluation period for everyone. Use the same frequency for evaluations, even during the pandemic. If you use any self-evaluation forms, use the same form for all employees. Plan ahead for backups if you’re conducting all of your evaluations virtually. Consistency is key to give everyone the same playing field during their evaluations.

Be Mindful

When you were setting hopeful targets for this year, it was likely before the start of the pandemic. Be mindful that while those goals may have been attainable in a typical year, this year has been anything but typical. Harvard Business Review suggests taking time to really think about what you’re evaluating during a performance review and adjust accordingly. Targets and metrics may be made moot by the changing economy. The way you evaluate your employees and team needs to shift this year to be more inclusive and reflect their skills and ability to adapt.

When conducting employee evaluations, particularly during COVID, you also need to be mindful of each employee as an individual. Take into account the year that they’ve had. Have they been sick? Did they lose someone close to them? Have they dealt with virtual school in addition to working remotely? Express empathy and show kindness – this year has been difficult for everyone. Lean hard into praise during your evaluations this year. After all, workplace recognition is good for business.

Think Outside of the Box

The normal data, metrics, and surveys you use to assess your employees might not even exist right now, thanks to COVID. You may not even see the majority of your employees if you’re all working remotely. So how can you accurately evaluate them and see their future potential? You’ll need to be more creative this year.

Think outside of the box and try these alternative ways to assess your employee’s strengths, biases, and potential:

  • Ask colleagues for reports on their peers. If this is your first time asking for peer evaluations, keep the process simple.
  • If your employee or team member works in a client-facing role, ask those clients for feedback.
  • Understand your own biases. You only know your employee or team member in one aspect – as their HR representative, manager, or team leader. You don’t know them as a comprehensive, whole person, and you naturally develop biases against them. We tend to think of people in categories – someone may be a “star” or a “slacker.”  Remind yourself that you do not see the entire picture, and then seek additional information that gives you a broader view.

Get a PIC of Their Potential

One way to get a broader view of your employee’s strengths, challenges, and potential is our PIC report. The PIC report gives you insight into your employee’s decision-making process, behaviors, and attitudes in the workplace – while removing any bias. It helps you truly understand your employee to evaluate them in a fair and unbiased manner. At a glance, you can understand their performance style, interpersonal style, and challenges at work so that during your performance review or employee evaluation, you can guide them to fulfill their potential.

Not only will you understand your employee or team member in a more meaningful way, but you’ll be able to better manage them going forward. The valuable insights within our PIC report guide you with communication tips, preferred management styles, and task suitability – ensuring that the next year will be fulfilling for both of you.

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