Productivity, efficiency, performance – these words have become so entrenched in the corporate landscape that they’ve almost lost their meaning. They’ve become buzzwords that stand in for something else, a target or a goal that businesses aim to achieve, always in the future, never something measurable right now. It’s almost as if we’ve lost sight of the fact that there are indeed ways to quantify performance, productivity, and efficiency, and more importantly, to push it forward and encourage our employees to achieve it. A solid performance review software gives you a jumpstart on getting your performance reviews done effectively. Download the ebook, “The Skeptics Guide to Performance Management“ and get started on improving your performance management process.
Modern businesses know that managing their day-to-day operations, workflows, and training is best done digitally, through performance management software. Still, over the past few years, performance management systems have undergone a revolution. Rather than acting as just a digital performance maintenance tool, they’ve become a tool for providing feedback and fostering company-wide communication. Performance management software has become the heart and soul of the performance review—one could even call it performance review software.
How We Got to Performance Review Software
Fifteen years ago, the idea of throwing out the time-tested process of quarterly and annual performance reviews would have been met with angry mobs in the office. But as the world has changed and embraced the powers of technology, it’s become blatantly obvious that an annual review just doesn’t cut it anymore. Rather than waiting until the end of the year to address potentially problematic areas, regularly checking in and appraising the situation can boost productivity in real-time, not just in a future-focused, buzzword sense of the word.
Staying competitive in a fast-paced modern industry means efficiently coming up with solutions to problems as they happen. But performance review software is more than just a tool for solving problems. It’s the future of how employees and management interact. Let’s take a look at how performance review software has changed more than just how businesses appraise their employees.
Before performance review software began taking over the corporate environment, most businesses were using either Microsoft Excel and Word or just a paper-based review process. While this approach might have worked to get the bare minimum done, it wasn’t effective enough at creating company-wide connections or making performance visible to everyone. Information was easily lost due to basic human error, and employees would fall out of the loops.
With cloud-based performance review software, though, entire departments can be kept on the same page, across different platforms, so that no one is unsure of the company’s objectives and goals. Rather than having to track down a file saved to a specific computer, or worse, a paper-copy, documents can be instantly corrected or edited from anywhere. All information is made accessible to all employees, fostering an open, friendly, and transparent work environment.
Maybe even more importantly, though, human resources departments are able to export and download progress reports into clean, easy-to-read data spreadsheets. Using this information, management can pinpoint not only where employees need further training to achieve the company’s goals but also where they are succeeding. Information is collected and presented in real-time, meaning that nothing ever goes unnoticed.
Taking Care of Business in the Moment
Possibly the most effective reason why companies have abandoned the outdated one-time annual performance review model is that it wasn’t able to make consistent changes in the same way as performance review software. With the old model, employees received feedback annually or, at best, quarterly. Any feedback they received was usually too far removed to hold any meaning. It’s hard to make changes to something that happened months ago.
Instead, performance review software has allowed continuous feedback throughout the project, as it’s under development. Rather than waiting until the project is finished and the client is dissatisfied, providing feedback throughout the process cuts out the risk for error. But, more than that, it also creates the opportunity to praise employees for their hard work. No one wants to feel as if their work is going unnoticed. By providing positive feedback with the negative, employees feel encouraged and more satisfied knowing that they’re creating growth for the company.
This also means that project managers can constantly access whether objectives are realistic and obtainable. Compared to the old system, where objectives and key results would be set at the start of the year and were not open to change, continuous performance reviews make objectives flexible. Because data is collected and processed in real-time, managers and employees can review their performance throughout a project and adjust either their workload or the objectives as need be. Management and employees are thus thrust together into the planning and reviewing process together, making the work environment far more collective and collaborative.
Open Lines of Communication
Collaboration should be the ultimate goal of any business. Putting up walls between employees and managers makes for an uncomfortable and stiff office atmosphere, so breaking down those barriers wherever possible is a great way to open up communication. Performance review software does exactly that. Because of the continuous nature of it, performance review software lets feedback become natural and expected instead of a built-up, end-of-year event that can cause anxiety and tension.
At the end of the day, more communication means more connections between employees. Employees who feel like they’re part of a work-family leave the office everyday feeling more satisfied and more willing to put their best efforts into the work. Something as simple as a user-friendly software system can build an employee-friendly office.
When we talk about productivity and performance, we shouldn’t just be looking at the past year. Productivity is an ongoing process that should be continuously accessed. With performance review software, you’ll not only see productivity rise in real-time, but you’ll foster a healthier and more transparent organization. Now is the time to leave outdated one-time annual performance reviews in the past. Update to a digital performance review platform and see how it can benefit your business.