Employee Performance Management in Business

Recruitment and performance monitoring

Legislative and employment requirements

Staffing, in general, involves the process of linking human knowledge, skills, abilities, and dispositions to the demands of the work setting (Krausert 2009). When staff is incorporated in any organization, its role is to perform numerous job assignments and hold numerous positions in the organization. It is from this fact that staffing has been described to include, “wide range of activities, including the recruitment and selection of new hires, assigning jobs, planning career paths, promoting employees, demoting them, and dismissing them” (Krausert 2009, p.114).

Before having any staff in place that can propagate the goals and objectives of the organization prescribed in the vision, the process of staffing has to adhere to some relevant legislative employment requirements.

For instance, in Australia employment legislation that employers have to put into consideration before carrying out any recruitment centers on equal opportunity and equal employment legislation; awards and agreements legislation; anti-discrimination legislation; recruitment sourcing methods; government subsidies or support for traineeships laws; and new apprenticeships laws (Australian National Training Authority, 2002).

Other minor laws generally in form of clauses within major laws centers on requiring employers to adhere to long-service leave; uniform regulations; health and safety observance; termination procedures, which in most cases take the form of a first and second verbal warning, written and a formal interview which must at least be attended by union representative (Penrith and Seal, 2008).

Observance of these laws has for instance ensured employers are cautious about injuries that a worker might suffer, in case of injury happening as a result of employer negligence or any form of unsatisfactory working conditions, the employee has the right to sue the employer to be compensated for any injury, discomfort, and loss of earning that might have resulted as a result of injury (Penrith and Seal, 2008). Fairness Test is generally “Australian workplace agreements and collective agreements to ensure they provide fair compensation for the removal or modification of protected award conditions, such as penalty rates and overtime loadings” (Penrith and Seal, 2008).

Accordingly, common employment legislation in Australia employers has to operate within include: Fair Work Act 2009, formerly known as Workplace Relations Act 1996; Equal Opportunity for Women in the Workplace Act 1999; Occupational Health and Safety Act 1993 (Parliament of Australian Library n.d). Other notable legislation that employers might have to consider include the Sex Discrimination Act 1984, Privacy Act 1998; and Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Australian Human Rights Commission n.d).

Establishment of key performance tools

Key results areas

Tracy (2002) notes that individuals who assume management roles in any capacity have seven key result areas they need to put the focus on to succeed; these include planning, organizing, staffing, delegating, supervising, measuring, and reporting. At the same time, the suggestion made by Jacobsen and Wertheimer (2009) indicates that organizations need to have “8 to 15 key results areas (KRAs), areas in which the organization must achieve success to grow and prosper.” The suggested KRAs by the author include increasing revenue, keeping pace with the competition, improving efficiency and productivity, achieving and maintaining superior customer service, and capitalizing on emerging opportunities (Jacobsen and Wertheimer, 2009).

Key performance indicators

The marketing strategy of ‘Everybody’s’ is based on providing fresh, clean, and quick services to customers in an environmentally friendly way; the performance of the unit, therefore, involves complementing both input and output aspects to realize these. Therefore, a sustained and almost precise methodology of measuring the performance will be based on productivity objectives, were in terms of market performance, the organization’s indicators will include target sales volume, desired sales growth size, or competitive market share to maintain and strengthen the unit.

Financial performance is another area that shareholders will concentrate on and as a result, performance indicators such as profitability of the unit, and growth and liquidity of the unit will be necessary. Lastly, the units’ employees, suppliers, and clients will expect certain performance results; thus, key performance indicators to address these stakeholders will include employment stability and advancement, creditworthiness, and good corporate citizenship (Wober 2002).

Performance standards

Performance standards represent the expected levels of performance in any particular organization, and in most cases, they are denoted as benchmarks, goals, or targets. For an organization to experience success, it needs realistic, measurable, and clearly understood performance standards. Performance standards should be established before any major work resumes and should define what everyone involved is expected to accomplish (Mathis and Jackson 2007). For Sasha and her unit of management, key performance standards should be involving recruitment and training of appropriate staff, as well as sales and marketing.

Risk management regarding staffing strategies and performance measures

The human resource, which is concerned with managing people is faced with some risks. First people themselves as they get hired to the organization become a source of the threat, people doing unproductive work or below the set standards is also a form of risk, employees refusing to take on additional responsibilities or even employees leaving immediately after they are hired before benefiting the organization (Mathis and Jackson 2007). Therefore risk management mechanisms to be put in place include:

  1. effective screening tools for possible and potential candidates aspiring to work in the organization;
  2. putting in place effective staffing, training, and motivational mechanisms to ensure the likely levels of turnover is low;
  3. organization having potential candidates’ reserves, effective candidates screening mechanisms, appropriate and result in oriented mechanisms;
  4. putting in place effective performance appraisal tools,
  5. efficient evaluation and monitoring mechanisms for the hired candidates.

Monitoring staff performance

Five reasons for staff performance monitoring

The process of gathering information about work activities, progress, and the quality of work performance has been regarded as an important element of ensuring quality is maintained and that there is a continuous organizational improvement. Staff performance monitoring fulfills the following:

Example

1) Undertaking performance monitoring is critical in terms of ensuring effective management and supervision, while at the same time, permit continuous feedback, and identification of staff needs (Dempsey and Nankervis 2006).

Treatment

Performance feedback contributes to worker productivity and can be measured in terms of production rates, error rates, and backlogs.

2) Further, performance monitoring has been hailed to contribute to reinforcing the priorities of the organization, hence monitoring staff beliefs about the relative importance of their numerous work activities are shaped. The performance monitoring should be in form of job analysis techniques together with critical incident techniques such as job knowledge analysis, work samples, and work performance predictors
3) Monitoring results are always essential in ensuring staff fulfills job requirements such as targets are met, standards are being achieved, and time-scales are being met. Employee performance can be through work/performance rating scales that should have accurate performance rating and reliability.
4) Monitoring has also been used in generating appropriate information used for feedback and goal-setting for the organization in plans. Performance monitoring can be done through culture, and work environment fit inventories, cut-off scores for staffing assessment, direct assessments, and also diversity performance assessments.
5) Monitoring results and feedback about employee performance have also been used to design and set compensation and reward schemes. Performance monitoring can be through non-financial motivation assessment for employees, performance-reward system assessment, job performance and satisfaction assessment, and organizational compensation system assessment.

Actions were taken to gain staff confidence in performance monitoring

According to La Vigna et al. (1994, cited in Dempsey and Nankervis 2006), to realize good practice in monitoring, the following practices should be in place.

  1. There should be staff involvement in setting performance standards to increase their ownership of the standards and for them to appreciate the relevance of the standards.
  2. There should be a sharing of responsibilities by carrying out monitoring across the organization and at all levels, roles, and teams without isolation or discrimination.
  3. There should be a thorough explanation to the staff on how the process of performance monitoring will improve results.
  4. There is a need for establishing mentoring arrangements and pairing the less experienced staff members with more experience as role models.
  5. Encouraging self-monitoring to enable staff to measure their current abilities against the set standards should be enhanced.
  6. Lastly, there should be a constant provision of feedback, recognition, and rewarding of staff effort while at the same time encouraging staff development opportunities (Dempsey and Nankervis 2006).

Monitoring as part of a continuous improvement approach

Learning and development are essential, and they should be part of an ongoing process for all staff members in the organization. Mostly, learning development needs are identified when it is established that a gap exists between the standard of performance as expected from the staff and the actual level of performance (Dempsey and Nankervis 2006). As a result, there will be a need to improve the staff members’ knowledge and skills or change their attitude (Kroehnert, 2000 cited in Dempsey and Nankervis 2006).

Staff training and development also becomes necessary when new ways of doing things in the organization or new directions of delivery are introduced. Further, staff learning and training development opportunities are necessary for personal growth, where they can be used to reinforce good practices or present an opportunity for staff to explore issues and refresh themselves (Dempsey and Nankervis 2006).

Giving and receiving feedback

Characteristics of formal and informal feedback

Job performance that involves regular performance assessment is beneficial to employee and employer and can be used as a development tool. To take place, performance assessment benefits from both formal and informal feedback. Informal feedbacks may take the form of reviews that include frequent meetings to discuss progress, congratulatory notes, constructive criticism, short handwritten notes, and emails for jobs well done.

In most cases, informal feedbacks are aimed at facilitating and keeping lines of communication open, articulating issues more clearly, ensuring problems are addressed, and ensuring good performance is recognized (Hurd and Meldrum 2008).

On the other hand, formal feedback normally succeeds through formal performance appraisal, where performance appraisal may take place annually or during the employee probation period. Generally, performance appraisals may be determined through specific numeric results such as participation counts, sales volume realized, the number of new members registered, and targets realized (Hurd and Meldrum 2008).

Management by objectives (MBO)

This type of performance appraisal would benefit Sasha and her organization in the sense, that the method usually specifies the performance goals that an individual and manager mutually identify. The manager sets objectives by reviewing the overall goals and objectives of the organization (Mathis and Jackson 2007). Implementation of the method generally goes through four stages: job review and agreement, development of performance standards, the setting of objectives, and continuing performance discussions (Mathis and Jackson 2007). In all these stages, the manager and employee collaborate in setting and implementing the set goals (Mathis and Jackson 2007).

Also, the method is recommended for the organization mainly because it allows a wide range of flexibility and control over the job. Therefore, training needs for this method of appraisal should be based on the purpose of the appraisal, the appraisal process and timing, and how performance criteria and standards should be linked to job duties and responsibilities. Specific training to be undertaken for this method of appraisal should largely be: how to set objective and achievable targets for the organization (target coaching), work plan and review training, performance objective and setting training, and goal setting training (Mathis and Jackson 2007).

Justification of this method originates from the fact as a new entity in the organization, Sasha will need to establish a strong and productive rapport with the workers, and therefore involving workers in organization goal-setting and decision-making will be important in ensuring the organization objectives are met.

Management of performance in an organization

How employees are made aware of performance standards

Upon being recruited into the organization, employees have the opportunity to be inducted into the organization. In other words, induction is the process by which new employees should be introduced to the organization’s policies and procedures. Besides, new employees during induction should be introduced to performance standards and evaluation processes of the organization, Codes of Conduct, and work outputs.

In essence, during induction, the organization should facilitate job descriptions and standards of performance where new employees need to be told exactly what they are responsible for and accountable for. Also, they should be informed on what tasks they are expected to perform, how they are supposed to complete their duties, accepted standards, and code of conduct they are supposed to observe, and on what criteria their job performance can be measured.

How key performance indicators are developed

First, there is the process of developing goals that should be agreed upon by all stakeholders in the organization, followed by the development of action plans to realize these goals. The next step should be to develop key performance indicators (KPIs), which should be agreed upon, and thereafter develop a system of measuring and monitoring the performance. Employees of the organization can agree to these KPIs if they become more transparent and support continued growth. In developing KPIs, the organization should ensure that the standards are in line with the customer expectation, indicators are clearly defined, standards are realistic, and lastly, the indicators are comparable to ensure achievements in meeting performance standards are realized.

Training and evaluation of performance management personnel

Training is necessary about performance management in that it becomes essential for objective skill setting, providing feedback, coaching, and counseling. Further, training is needed concerning the use of competences, the preparation of performance agreements and plans, the preparation for and conduct of performance reviews, ratings, and completion of review forms. Training of personnel takes place where the personnel generally are introduced to performance management, the definition of tasks and objectives, analysis and measurement, preparation of personal development plans, conduct-reviewing meetings. Moreover, evaluation of personnel training takes place through rating, providing feedback, and coaching and counseling the staff (Armstrong 2000).

Mechanisms to provide both formal and informal feedback to the employee

Employees in most organizations are assessed based on the following aspects: interpersonal skills, decision-making, creative problem solving, adaptability and flexibility, leadership and mentoring, accountability, and ethics and integrity (Farazmand 2007). Also, formal mechanisms used to provide feedback especially about appraisals include Performance Assessment and Recognition System (PAR), Performance Development Plan, and Employee Development and Appraisal (EDA), while the informal mechanisms may include staff meetings, short notes, informal workshops, and groups’ discussion points (Farazmand 2007).

How performance management is recorded and employee performance records maintained

Employee performance records constitute an important part of employee records that an organization should take care of. Employee performance records should be maintained in the department and should be permanently by the Human Resource Manager. Besides, care should be extended in handling the records and each file folder should be opened for each employee.

In essence, maintaining employee performance records should involve: copies of the employee’s most recent one or two performance appraisals notes reminding both the positive and negative as appropriate to include in the employee’s next performance appraisal, copies of employees training, reprimands, and achievement documents about employee performance appraisals, accurate records of any performance improvement activities undertaken, including all indications of follow-up and problem resolution.

How performance improvements are established, reviewed, and improved

Performance improvement can only take place successfully when there is a clear and all-inclusive performance development plan. A performance plan should be well in terms of measurement, feedback, positive reinforcement, exchange of views, and agreement. Review of performance involves participation in continuous assessment of the goals and objectives that performance plans are based on. Reviewing may involve assessing the positive outcomes and negative outcomes, and finding the deficiency areas. However, improvement will involve collecting views from a wide spectrum of shareholders, such as employees, customers, and the community before making necessary changes.

Capacity areas for external human resource specialists

Human resource planning has become a vital element in most organizations, and it is through effective human resource planning that the organization can meet numerous HR needs. The needs may range from recruitment, training, induction, and change management, and organization strategy.

In some cases, the internal capacity of the human resource body may not be able to handle the present and future needs of an organization especially in challenging and competitive environment; therefore, at such stage, external human resource specialists may be needed to undertake or provide consultancy services for an organization to undertake. Also, external HR specialists may be appropriate when the organization envisions an objective change-management process in the organization since they are less likely to be influenced by the staff.

Coaching, retraining, and monitoring of underperformers

To proceed with this, there is a need to involve identification of the areas of under-performance, establishing the causes for poor performance, initiating and providing necessary resources to tackle the identified problems, and initiating coaching activities and programs. This will be followed by providing additional training. At this stage, there should be consideration of re-allocation of duties, monitoring the process and providing necessary feedbacks, providing additional guidance, and lastly weighing the possibilities of instituting disciplinary procedure, starting with initial warnings. Moreover, monitoring should involve observable changes among the underperformers after the coaching and re-training process, and observing how well they can meet the expectations.

Organization’s and access to specialist support services

Organization’s needs are varied, which in essence cannot be met by the organization alone; thus, this calls for the incorporation of specialists. Specialists become important and necessary, especially for staff having language problems. Also, the specialists assist in resolving the issue of diversity in the workplace that leads to cultural conflict, the educational needs of the staff, and counseling needs for the staff. Moreover, they enhance staff recovery programs and general specialist services about performance in the workplace.

How performance feedback systems are evaluated regularly

Performance feedback generally provides information about satisfaction experienced, dissatisfaction, or the necessary measures to undertake to improve particular aspects. In essence, evaluation of any performance feedback systems will involve assessment of the system concerning the objectives fulfilled, the level of satisfaction/dissatisfaction realized, the general outcomes of the performance system, and the efficiency of the system to the organization’s objectives and goals. On the overall, evaluation of performance systems is carried out through internal audits, staff performance appraisals, and objective/goal monitoring.

How selection, induction, and training systems are evaluated regularly

The key element in an organization is the availability of staff that possesses the capacity to carry out the organization’s goals effectively. This calls for a product selection, induction, and training process. The evaluation of any system about these will involve the determination of the number of vacancies filled after advertisement, the number of applicants available to undergo an interview, identification of skills sought after, the ability of the recruited staff to learn organization’s aspects, and successful performance of staff during the probation period.

Portfolio evidence

Human resource is a field that possesses challenges that need effective management skills. People and organizations interact at all times, and the interaction results in many changes and modifications. One particular area that has been born many challenges is the performance management unit. Coming to an organization, especially a new organization that has no established performance systems in place can be challenging. However, as a professional, I possess key competencies that have been instrumental in my endeavors of working in different organizations.

Management of people especially from a diverse background can be challenging, but the greatest challenge is when performance evaluation of the people has to take place. As much evidence provided will show, I have been able to manage and achieve success due to my capability of ensuring the organization’s members are aligned to a common cause to pursue, where at the same time pursuance of the purpose does not take place in isolation.

Hence, I have been comfortable working and initiating cooperative groups and teams. Groups or teams at the same time cannot work effectively if the motivation is absent; hence, motivation aspects and mechanisms have been part of my strategies in ensuring team members can realize the goals positively. Organizational goals further cannot be achieved in conflict and state of misunderstanding. Always, there is a need for proper encoding and decoding of messages; hence, my capabilities again have widely been involved in creating, facilitating, and managing effective organizational communication with different stakeholders.

Managing employees’ performance is another area I have performed excellently. My understanding and principle have been that performance activities have to take into consideration the needs of the employee and the employer. Such grounds have enabled to design and implement effective and successful performance management systems that have been both beneficial to the organization and the employee.

My first step in carrying out performance management has involved planning for the process, where the employees are alerted about the needs of the organization carrying out the performance process. After key stakeholders have been alerted, my next step is to establish performance appraisal tools by ensuring the participation of employees, employers, customers, and other key stakeholders in the business.

To ensure that employees adopt and accept the activities of performance initiatives, there is a need to undertake frequent performance feedback, coaching, and development processes. Therefore, my skills have also been utilized very effectively in these areas.

Further, training organization’s employees on aspects of performance have been seen to work well for both small and big organizations; therefore, training is another key area I have aspired and constantly taken the examination in, to be well equipped for the challenges. To ensure the organization works well, and its goals are realized, appropriate advertisement, job description, interview, recruitment, induction, and training are key components. Generally, an organization should have the right individuals to take up different roles.

Before the right individuals are selected, there is a need for an appropriate job description before advertising for it. After the advertisement has been made, and applications are received, effective mechanisms that are aligned to the organization’s goals need to be used in selecting the right and qualified candidates for the interview. The end of selecting candidates for interviews will usher in a period of inviting the candidates for interviews.

Again, the process of interviewing should be appropriate and objective to the needs of the organization. Successful candidates in the interview will need an enriching induction and training before they fully become part of the organization. Each of the outlined steps requires unique skills and specific abilities, which I have confidently demonstrated in my earlier assessment.

Therefore, as my portfolio of evidence would show, I possess key competences that I believe, upon being utilized in any organization intended for perfect growth and positive change, can result in an output that benefits both the worker and the organization as a whole. The competences are further boosted by my immense multi-cultural training and leadership, which further make it possible for me to undertake any assignment across different cultures, as I have done in the past with assurance of success.

Reference List

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Parliament of Australian Library. N.d. Employment Laws. Web.

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