360 Degree Performance Appraisal-The Ultimate Guide to Reading

With the organizations always trying to improve their performances, new strategies and methods are developed as we speak. The 360 Degree Performance Appraisal is only one of them to name within the category, so keep reading for finding out all the details.

How to define the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal with a few words?

How to define the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal

The 360 Degree Performance Appraisal is a sophisticated system that many organizations use for judging the performance of their employees, through the reviews of 7-12 people. The people reviewing are working with the evaluated employee and may be part of the work department.

The feedback is collected as a compilation of reviews regarding the competencies of the employee. Thanks to the self-assessment, even the employee contributes to the appraisal.

The 360 Degree Performance Appraisal is a solid way for improving the understanding of the ups and lows of an employee, using the creative feedback form.

How does it work?

Typically, the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal is gathered from peers, employees, managers, and team members. A job survey about the performance of an employee is created, with four stages for the 360-degree appraisal.

It begins with the self-appraisal, it continues with the superior’s appraisal, the subordinates appraisal, ending with the peer appraisal.

What are the fundamental objectives of 360 Degree Performance Appraisal?

The objectives of 360 Degree Performance Appraisal are different from one company to another, with the fundamental purpose being to evaluate the performance of an employee in a comprehensive way.

Experts consider that 360degree feedback done precisely and efficiently is going to help the employee be more comfortable within the organization, which leads to better performance for the employee.

Thanks to the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal, an organization isn’t limited to a couple of people anymore, but only becomes a bigger team. Back in the days, the appraisal was solely the responsibility of the human resource management. However, the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal is capable of colleting anonymous feedback about the employee from the colleagues, superiors, and peers from the customers.

The holistic way helps the organization evaluate the performance and well-being of an employee a lot more accurately.

What are the main advanatges of 360 Degree Performance Appraisal?

Just like any other system, there are ups and downs for the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal. Let’s begin with the advantages of the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal:

  • It strengthens the credibility of the performance appraisal system
  • It ensures a detailed view regarding the performance of employees
  • It makes the employee more responsible and alert towards their clients
  • Any feedback coming from colleagues is going to improve the self-development process of an employee
  • The various ideas coming from multiple raters are going to provide better precision for the 360-degree assessment
  • An employee who typically undervalues himself/herself may get the motivation he/she needs
  • It’s not only the manager but also the colleagues that become responsible for the assessment of a team’s performance, which only strengthens their position
  • It can collect more persuasive point of views from various participants
  • The system helps develop an honest culture among the organization

Are there any downsides related to the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal?

No system is perfect, and the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal doesn’t make an exception. Here are the minor flaws to consider:

  • When the feedback is exchanged among the employees, it may cause some tension and anxiety in the team
  • The process takes a lot of time, and energy as it’s very complex
  • Figuring out the results is challenging
  • For the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal to be useful and accurate, the employees have to go through some training. The training doesn’t happen overnight, and it takes effort and time from everyone involved.
  • Since the information isn’t available to everybody, some suspicious environment may develop in the organization
  • Not all feedbacks are helpful, and the useless ones need to be deleted.

What are the typical steps of the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal process?

360 Degree Performance Appraisal process

The phases of the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal process may not be the same for all organizations, but the process is quite similar. The process starts with the communication about the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal method, and it completes with the re-evaluation of everyone involved in the process.

Without any further ado, let’s take a look at the main steps:

   1. Transmitting the 360-degree performance review

Talking with the organization’s stakeholders about the entire process is essential. Everyone participating needs to know about the purpose and the objective of the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal process. The stakeholders should know about the process of gathering the feedback and using the feedback later on within the organization.

It may take 2-3 weeks to communicate about the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal, with personal meetings with the managers, leaders, supervisors, and employees being the primary method. When an email is used, employees need to be encouraged to talk about any questions that have about the whole process.

   2. Choosing the raters

It’s another essential step of the process, as the system needs a good number of participants so that the data is comprehensive and accurate. The number of raters depends on the working relationship and the employee’s job profile.

The rater needs to include direct reports, supervisors, peers, and possible customers/clients. It shouldn’t take more than two weeks for selecting the evaluators.

   3. Questionnaire’s spreading

The online 360-degrees feedback system is a common way to spread the survey, since it ensures a faster spreading. The participants get an email with the link of polls. It may take only a week to send the link to everyone involved.

   4. Submitting the questionnaires

When everyone got the surveys, they can complete it online and provide it to the evaluator later on. It’s the most extended phase of the process. The time needed depends on the number of raters including in the process, the organization, and the job profile of the employee.

It’s fundamental that participants also receive a deadline about completing the questionnaire so that the process ends faster. A month may be needed for completing this step.

   5. Completing the report

Once all the reviews are collected, it’s time for the confidential report. When the story is ready, it can be sent straight to the participants, or it can be transmitted through one-one feedback session.

The easiest way is through the online system, which may take only two days.

   6. Easing out the feedback

The feedback has to be provided confidentially in a meeting with the employee’s manager/coach. The session helps one comprehend the feedback report, but also to talk about the strengths of employee and where he/she needs improvement.

It can last a couple of hours for every employee.

   7. Creating the development plan

With the review done, the organization has to create a development plan for every employee. It’s essential to develop an actionable plan for improving the employee’s performance. The key areas are the ones where improvement is necessary. Mentoring, coaching, workshops, training programs, and conferences need to be arranged according to the employee’s vital area.

It’s also essential that the development plans are created fast so that the employees start improving as soon as possible. Two weeks is the maximum amount of time required for defining the development plans.

   8. Re-evaluating

Truth be told, not all organizations are going to find the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal system perfect for them. Once the whole process begins, the organization has to be prepared for all the possible consequences. Specific goals and opportunities may also be mentioned within the development program, easing out the evaluation later on.

Re-evaluating the participants helps the organization be aware of the changes and identify the areas in which the employees made progress per se.

The whole process of the 360 Degree Performance Appraisal may take 8 to 12 months to be completed.