The annual performance evaluation process is centered around on-going communication between employees and their supervisors related to goals, expectations, skills, and performance. Human Resources has a detailed Policy and Procedure related to the annual performance review process which can be found here and here.
The Professional Development Center (PDC) is here to assist staff members with learning how to use the new annual performance review forms. We provide initial training, ongoing training sessions, and one-on-one support for both staff members and those who supervise staff members.
Annual Performance Evaluation FAQ's
The university acknowledges that all employees benefit from on-going communication with their supervisors on goals, expectations, skills, and performance. The intent of this policy is to ensure that a formal process occurs in addition to the encouraged informal feedback during the year. This more formal process, entitled Annual Review, is designed to achieve the following goals:
- To link the work of the employee to the work of the group and the department
- To set objectives so that expectations are clear
- To review the objectives mid-year for updates, assistance, and recognition
- To reinforce positive work habits and ethics
- To offer the employee information regarding professional development
The Professional Development Center (PDC)has a training module available in Canvas. This training module covers topics related to the forms, how to use them, and tips for success. This training is a one hour module and all who would like access should email firstname.lastname@example.org
Additionally, the PDC’s Supervisor Training Program has several training sessions dedicated to the performance review process.
For information related to the annual performance review process, procedures, and the grievance process, you may view the Human Resources Annual Performance Review Process policy here.
Self Assessment Questions
The self-assessment is there to have employees reflect on their successes and challenges, to give supervisors insight into their day-to-day work, and to bring up discrepancies around expectations and performance.
For employees, the self-assessment should be used as a reflection tool to think about what you’re good at, what you might want to improve, and what you might want your supervisor to know about you, your role, and your performance.
For supervisors, it’s an opportunity to gain insight into what your employee values and how they view themselves and their work. None of the information they share should be used punitively; instead, when they share areas to work on or challenges they face, this is a chance to discuss how you can support them in their growth and development.
The supervisor should review the employee’s self-assessment before filling out their own evaluation and take those reflections into consideration. If there are significant differences between the self-assessment and the supervisor’s evaluation, they should have a discussion about expectations and how they both view how those expectations are being met.
Goal Setting Questions
Work or project goals: has clear end results or objectives to be completed within the next 12 months and are driven by team/department needs or goals.
Development or learning goals: focused on long-term growth for your current or future role.
Team goals: focused on enriching the team environment and working relationships.
Work and project goals: Clarity (measurable and unambiguous), Task complexity (enough time is given to complete with time to learn), Challenge (realistic but a stretch), and Feedback (a plan with checkpoints)
Example: By the end of December, analyze the purchasing process and present recommendations for improvement.
Development and learning goals: Clarity, Connection (to current or future work), Challenge (pushes and excites), Planning (concrete action steps with feedback checkpoints)
Example: Learn about High Performance Culture and team building by completing three relevant training programs by May.
Team goals: Clarity, connection to where the team is currently or where you’d like to go, challenge, planning.
Example: By August, develop and present a training on selecting a diverse class of students and present the training in our team meeting. Use a follow up meeting to talk through the presented ideas and complete an activity.
Work and project goals: What are your objectives for this year in your role? What are the strategic goals of the team/department? How does your work align to those? How can you support them in your role? What do you need to learn to ensure success in your role?
Development and learning goals: What project is exciting you right now? What are some skills you would like to develop? Where are you being under-leveraged? What is next for you in your career? Do you feel challenged in your role? Do you want more, less, or different challenges?
Team goals: What strengths do you add to our team? What are some skills you feel you have developed expertise in and would like to share with our team? Where do you see room for growth in our team? Do you feel connected to your teammates? What does being a team mean to you?
Goal setting should be an employee led, collaborative process. When possible, inform your employee of how many goals you are expecting and in what categories. If you have a very specific goal for them, make sure to let your employee know that ahead of time. Goal numbers should be consistent and appropriate for all supervisees.
Employees should be given ample time to develop their goals before the performance review meeting is set. It can be challenging for some to come up with their own goals. A collaborative process should be utilized for all goals. If an employee struggles to come up with all of their goals prior to a review meeting, use this as a point of discussion and set them together.
Supervisors should schedule a performance review meeting with each employee they supervise. This meeting should be used to go over points of celebration, points of improvement, and a discussion of goals, questions, and concerns moving forward. Do not simply read your comments word for word to your employees.
Have regular check in meetings
Supervisors and staff members who regularly meet to discuss performance, projects and goals have a much easier time with performance review meetings. The annual performance review should not be the first and only time your employees are hearing your thoughts and review of their performance. Implement weekly check ins and revisit annual goals on a quarterly or bi-annual basis to keep the conversation alive. Annual performance review feedback should not be a large surprise.
Pick a few key points
There can be a temptation to read your review to your employees. Instead, try picking a few strengths and any areas for improvement. Make these the largest topic of conversation. Evaluation meetings should be conversational and not one sided.
Send your notes to your employee before the meeting
Employees are required to send their self assessment to supervisors. Similarly, it can be helpful to share your written review document with your employee prior to the performance evaluation meeting. This gives your employee time to sit with the comments and avoid being blind sided when you are face to face. This can aid in more productive conversations.
Signing the performance review form is a means of documenting that the review took place, not necessarily that you agree with your supervisor’s assessment of your performance. Employees with serious concerns should email email@example.com for information on how to submit a rebuttal.
The Professional Development Center offers one-on-one support for Annual Performance Review Process support. Request a 30-minute consultation here. You may also find on-demand training resources and recommendations at the end of this webpage under Downloadable Resources.
Appropriate Feedback Questions
The supervisor may choose to seek feedback on a staff member's performance from: a secondary supervisor, colleagues inside or outside of the department with whom the employee regularly interacts or works, a former supervisor in the event of a transfer from another department, or - when a staff member supervises their own team - those who report to the employee. To view more information, please review the Annual Performance Review Process Instructions and the HR Annual Performance Review Policy.
The feedback provided by someone other than the employee's immediate supervisor can be attached as an addendum to the Annual Performance Evaluation Review form or incorporated into the review itself, assuming the supervisor agrees with the content. This feedback should include the summary of feedback from the relevant person, without disclosing names or identifiers to protect the integrity of the feedback process. Feedback recorded in a separate addendum may be provided in a paragraph summary or a second evaluation form itself, but should focus on the same competencies of evaluation as the Annual Performance Evaluation Review. Evaluation criteria should focus on the employee's job description and performance goals.
Per HR Annual Performance Review Policy, supervisor's may seek feedback from a secondary supervisor, colleagues inside or outside of the department with home the employee regularly interacts or works, a former supervisor in the event of a transfer from another department, or - when a staff member supervises their own team - those who report to the employee. As noted at the bottom of the Annual Performance Review Form, "The Employee understands signing this performance review does not indicate that they agree with all of the information in it. Signing the performance review is an expectation indicating receipt, and does not forfeit the employee’s right to file a rebuttal". Employees who want more information about the rebuttal process or who have concerns about retaliation should contact firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Annual Performance Review Resources
Below you will find downloadable resources related to the annual performance review process.
Quarterly or Midyear Goal Check-In Resources
While the formal performance review process is completed once a year, staff and supervisors can make time for feedback throughout the year. Completing a quarterly or midyear goal check-in can help to engage and develop our staff by setting them up for success during the time between Annual Performance Evaluation Feedback.
To aid in conversation, the Quarterly Performance Goals Check-In template can provide a guide to regular conversations between supervisors and employees that outline professional needs, adjustments, and help to address any questions or challenges regarding annual goal achievement. By maintaining strong relationships built on feedback and reflection, staff and their supervisors help lead the university toward our vision of being recognized internationally as an institution that imagines and influences the future.
Do you have other questions about the annual performance review process that were not answered above? Submit your questions to us here. This form is continuously monitored and a member of our team will respond to your shortly.