6 Complaints About Manual Performance Management Processes
No HR person likes to hear about a broken process, but that’s what happens when companies don’t make performance management easy.
Do these complaints sound familiar?
“Where do I send these review forms?”
“I don’t have time to do this annual review right now.”
“There are way too many shared docs floating around.”
These complaints are common in companies that use manual processes for performance reviews. Many companies start with a manual process, then move to software when those processes start to break down.
Here are six common complaints that you might hear if you’re not using performance management software. In the article below, we’ll explain how to resolve these issues.
1. Managers don’t have a consistent plan for performance reviews
2. Reviews are scattered across emails, Google Docs, and spreadsheets.
3. People don’t want to participate
4. Leadership doesn’t want to be bothered with performance reviews
5. HR is drowning in work during reviews
6. Managers don’t have anywhere to store review notes.
1. Managers Don’t Have a Consistent Plan for Performance Reviews
On the surface, it sounds smart to let every manager conduct their performance reviews. After all, they know their team and the work they do better than anyone, right?
That may be true, but letting all of your managers do their own thing makes it impossible to track performance trends across the company. You can’t accurately compare departments, and you can’t compare employees against each other.
Making changes to the review cycle is a nightmare too. With everyone doing their own thing, it can be hard to wrap your head around whether changes need to be made, or what those changes should be.
When you use dedicated performance management software, you can create a plan for the entire company.
That doesn’t mean individual departments don’t have their plans. You can use a different form with different questions and still have a centralized process. The standardized process ensures that there are constants to measure across all teams.
2. Reviews Are Scattered Across Emails, Google Docs, and Spreadsheets
Sending your reviews through email is easy, but it’s not simple.
You can send emails with the click of a button, but what are you doing with the information when it's emailed back?
Maybe you’re using Google Docs. Do you remember to grant the proper permissions, or are you getting countless emails to grant access to the right people?
Are you moving information from emails and Google Docs to spreadsheets? Do you have one spreadsheet, or are you using different sheets for different teams?
Phew! That’s a lot of work.
Performance management software makes things easier. You can send forms, receive responses, and store data automatically within the same platform; no need to send out email reminders, supervise Google Doc permissions, or manage data by hand.
3. People Don’t Want to Participate
Do you feel like you have to twist everyone’s arm when review time rolls around?
If your managers and employees seem disengaged from the review process, it’s probably because it’s a huge pain.
Managers are trying to keep track of emails. They’re wondering who has responded to what and who they’re still waiting on. They have to figure out where to find everyone’s information from the last review cycle. This can be a nightmare if the information is in an inbox or a spreadsheet. If you’re still using paper forms, managers have even more work to do.
Employees probably don’t want to participate either. They don’t want to keep track of another string of emails or fill out more paperwork by hand and drop it off wherever it needs to go.
If you want your employees and your managers to care, your performance management system needs to be convenient. That’s where performance management software can help.
Managers and employees can simply log in and see everything they need. The system automatically reminds everyone to fill out or sign off on reviews, and review data is stored right there on the platform. Software keeps everyone on track without the need to send emails or fill out and file paperwork by hand.
4. Leadership Can’t Be Bothered With Performance Reviews
Nearly 50% of managers don't see the value in a review system they have to use with their employees.
And if managers can’t see the value in a performance review system, you can bet upper-level executives don’t see the value in the system either.
If you want your leadership team to care about performance reviews, you have to show them why they should care.
You have to run the numbers. You have to dig into stats and figures. You have to find out exactly where everyone is so you can decide where everyone is going. Then, you have to compare previous data with current data.
They have to be able to see exactly how performance reviews impact the company. Then, they can inspire others to care about performance management from the top down.
Using dedicated performance management software means you don't have to do any of it by hand. It collates all the data for you, and it can even display it visually. All you have to do is bring your findings to the next meeting.
5. HR is Drowning in Work During Reviews
Some managers and HR spend a lot of time on performance reviews. One study found that it added up to an average of 210 hours per year, per person.
With that kind of time investment, it’s common for HR to drop everything when review time rolls around. They need time to schedule reviews, coordinate the filling out of forms, remind people to sign off on forms, and transfer data.
If HR transforms into nothing but a performance management department during every review cycle, something is wrong.
You can use software to coordinate the entire process. Like a ballet performance, everything will happen in perfect harmony, with HR just clicking a few buttons to kick off the next round of reviews.
This approach also means HR can be nimble in the future. If the company grows or it’s time to add more steps to the process, HR has the bandwidth to handle it.
6. Managers Don’t Have Anywhere to Store Performance Notes
65% of employees want more feedback.
Many employees crave more feedback because managers don’t take notes on their performance throughout the year. When it’s time for reviews, they have no idea what to say.
Managers may recognize employees for a job well-done in the moment. They may make a mental note to mention an observation at the next review meeting. However, one week, one month, or an entire year later, they simply don’t remember.
If you want to promote a culture of feedback—and give employees the more frequent feedback they crave—you have to use a software system.
Tools like PerformYard let managers and coworkers enter feedback between and during review cycles. The feedback is automatically stored within each employee’s account so employees can review their feedback at any time. This builds a wealth of information that managers can access when they are ready to fill out the next review.