Performance Appraisal: What HR Leaders Need to Know


HR performance appraisal is a topic that often causes a lot of frustration and confusion for employees. HR leaders are in a unique position to improve this situation by providing clear guidelines, recognizing the pitfalls of performance appraisals, and ensuring they have an up-to-date policy on performance appraisals. In this blog post, we’ll explain what HR leaders need to know about performance appraisal in order to implement it successfully.


First things first: What is performance appraisal? The simplest definition would be “evaluating the work of employees based on company standards,” but a more meaningful way of looking at it might be as follows: Performance Appraisal involves the assessment of current job knowledge in relation to established tasks or competencies needed for your next role within the organization and your development with other members of the work team.


The most common problem is that employees are too concerned about their own self-worth. As an HR leader, you must ensure that everyone in the organization is meeting their goals and helping others succeed. Sounds like a tough job? Well, we’ll help you out below with some tips for your company to implement an effective performance appraisal. It’s time to learn!

Why does your company need a performance evaluation system?

Human Resources areas are responsible for promoting the performance, well-being and development of employees in an organization. Performance appraisal helps reduce uncertainty about performance expectations and ensures that employees have the opportunity to improve. The major objective of a performance appraisal is to promote employee self-awareness, which will lead to actions for employee development. In addition, performance appraisals provide a structured and reliable process for identifying the best ways to support employees.

How performance appraisals help HR and employee performance

HR performance appraisals help clarify what good work looks like in an organization by providing information on areas where people can develop or grow their skills. It also provides an objective sense of how the employee’s strengths compare with those of other members of the same level within the company.


Through this process, HR managers are able to identify skill gaps and prioritize training plans accordingly. Finally, when done well over time with periodic assessments, they help in understanding individual career goals and desired growth.

Main errors in a performance evaluation

If you want your organization to carry out an effective performance evaluation system, from Human Resources these are the mistakes you should avoid:

  1. Do not give feedback
  2. Presenting an overly detailed written evaluation, rather than relying on verbal feedback and coaching sessions. This forces the evaluator to guess what is wrong with someone’s performance. A bigger problem than the lack of detail on the form is when the employee is not told how they can improve their performance or given any guidance on where they should be headed in the coming year.
  3. Organizing them by numerical rating rather than sticking to simple categories such as “needs improvement” and “meets expectations” This creates unfair comparisons, as some employees are being rated against people who have different job functions that may require more skills. It also leads to those who receive poor ratings becoming defensive, which makes HR’s job more difficult.
  4. Not using a template or system that fits the needs of the organization, the area and the employees to be evaluated.
  5. Not keeping a record and control of the results, the employees’ commitments to improve and the actions to be followed up in future evaluations.

Ways to improve a Human Resources performance evaluation

The following are some of the ways you can make your performance appraisal system more successful:

  1. Provide feedback and coaching sessions throughout the year. This will help employees understand their performance as well as what is expected of them in their next job.
  2. Set aside time in the HR area to provide coaching, training and soft skills development.
  3. Eliminate numerical rating altogether and stick to simple categories such as “meets expectations” or “needs improvement”.
  4. Review your organization’s objectives, those of each of the business areas and design a template that can be used by all evaluators. You can also hire a performance evaluation tool such as Bizneo or Imprase.
  5. Include feedback from the employee’s manager (if he/she has one), from his/her teammates or department and also, if possible, from those who work closely with him/her. This will provide a more accurate picture of the person’s performance in his or her current position, as well as the steps needed for personal development.
  6. Offer regular training opportunities to help employees improve their skills.
  7. Make someone responsible for keeping track of and following up on past commitments from both HR managers and employees when it comes time to prepare for future evaluations.


In conclusion, performance appraisals are very important for any organization and the human resources department needs to make sure it gets them right. There are many pitfalls that can lead to an ineffective performance appraisal system, so keep in mind the tips in this article so you can avoid them.

Another day we will talk about the PSEGAR (or GRAPES) model that we designed more than 20 years ago, which is a kind of coaching model (similar to GROW) but with a sharper focus on performance evaluation. This model is trained within the OlaCoach Integral Coaching program, and is also included in the ChVmpion Mind development tool. Start designing and implementing the performance evaluation system. You can see the complete guide so you can learn all about how to evaluate and promote performance in your collaborators. Get started now!

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