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What is “Performance Assessment”?

Performance assessment is the third phase of an effective performance appraisal system. Basically, performance assessment involves evaluating just how good a job the individual has done and filling out the appraisal form.

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Too often, people think that performance appraisal is an event—a once-a-year drill required by the personnel department in which the manager fills out the form and then uses it to give feedback and justify raises.

That’s wrong. But that notion is so common, it causes a lot of people to be skeptical of performance appraisal.

Evaluating someone’s performance is one of the last activities in an effective appraisal system, not one of the first. As previously discussed, the process should start with performance planning, the hour-long conversation between the manager and the individual in which they discuss the goals, competencies, objectives, and key job responsibilities. The next phase of an effective performance management system is performance execution. For the individual this involves getting the job done; for the manager it means creating the conditions that motivate and solving performance problems.

Managers often complain that evaluating someone’s performance is difficult. The reason that they find it difficult is usually that they haven’t done a good job of performance planning at the beginning of the year. If a manager hasn’t held a planning discussion at that time, it’s difficult to evaluate performance at the end of the year.