A colleage of mine and I had an interesting conversation about how mining (pun intended), aggregating and analyzing the different employee inputs gathered through the performance management process might yield some helpful information about strategy and operations.
Think about some of the different responses and comments you gather from employees, either through self-appraisals or their inputs to the performance form itself.
You might, for example, provide an opportunity for employees to mention any constraints or obstacles they encountered in trying to achieve their performance objectives. This could happen either by directly posing the question on a form or simply by providing a comment space where employees may choose to share these thoughts. Aggregating and attempting to categorize or interpret this data might open a window into understanding the organization's performance challenges. Sorting the data by employee performance level might shed additional light on how the company may be frustrating its top performers.
Similarly, many organizations regularly ask an upfront question, as part of the individual goal setting process, about the types of development, resources or support an employee feels will be important to their achievement of personal performance objectives. Aggregating and assessing this information (whether overall or by performance level) could point to proactive steps the organization should be taking during the year to better position employees for success.
Employees are often given the opportunity to share their career goals and interests as part of a development conversation connected to performance management. Are you taking advantage of this data and considering what employees are seeking relative to what leaders see as the organization's top skill needs going forward? Are there promising points of intersection? Surprising disconnects that demand attention?
What insights have you drawn from employee inputs to your performance management process? What other possibilities do you see for this information?
Ann Bares is the Founder and Editor of the Compensation Café, Author of Compensation Force and Managing Partner of Altura Consulting Group LLC, where she provides compensation consulting to a range of client organizations. Ann was recently named President Elect of the Twin Cities Compensation Network (the most awesome local reward network on the planet) and joined the Advisory Board of the Compensation & Benefits Review, the leading journal for those who design, implement, evaluate and communicate total rewards. She earned her M.B.A. at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School, is a bookhound and foodie in her spare time. Follow her on Twitter at @annbares.
Creative Commons image "Gold Bars at the Museum of Natural History " by Bradley Brown 1