Why managerial performance appraisals are ineffective

One of my HR Community friends, Basheer wrote to me: Or, is there a way out of appraisals altogether? So I would like to share my reply to him:

Why managerial performance appraisals are ineffective

Each of the methods is effective for some purposes for some organizations only.

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None should be dismissed or accepted as appropriate except as they relate to the particular needs of the organization or an employee. Broadly all methods of appraisals can be divided into two different categories.

Rating scales consists of several numerical scales representing job related performance criterions such as dependability, initiative, output, attendance, attitude etc. Each scales ranges from excellent to poor. The total numerical scores are computed and final conclusions are derived.

Under this method, checklist of statements of traits of employee in the form of Yes or No based questions is prepared.


Here the rater only does the reporting or checking and HR department does the actual evaluation. The series of statements arranged in the blocks of two or more are given and the rater indicates which statement is true or false.

The rater is forced to make a choice. HR department does actual assessment. Rater is compelled to distribute the employees on all points on the scale.

It is assumed that the performance is conformed to normal distribution. The approach is focused on certain critical behaviors of employee that makes all the difference in the performance. Supervisors as and when they occur record such incidents.

Behaviorally Anchored Rating Scales: They are said to be behaviorally anchored. The rater is supposed to say, which behavior describes the employee performance. This is based on the test of knowledge or skills.

The tests may be written or an actual presentation of skills. Tests must be reliable and validated to be useful.

Key Factors

Mostly used by government departments, however its application in industry is not ruled out. Here the report is given in the form of Annual Confidentiality Report ACR and may record ratings with respect to following items; attendance, self expression, team work, leadership, initiative, technical ability, reasoning ability, originality and resourcefulness etc.

The system is highly secretive and confidential. Feedback to the assessee is given only in case of an adverse entry. Disadvantage is that it is highly subjective and ratings can be manipulated because the evaluations are linked to HR actions like promotions etc.

Performance Appraisal Tools and Techniques

In this method the rater writes down the employee description in detail within a number of broad categories like, overall impression of performance, promoteability of employee, existing capabilities and qualifications of performing jobs, strengths and weaknesses and training needs of the employee.

They may get confused success depends on the memory power of raters. Here performance is evaluated from the monetary returns yields to his or her organization. Cost to keep employee, and benefit the organization derives is ascertained.

Hence it is more dependent upon cost and benefit analysis.London M and Smither J Can multi source feedback change perceptions of from MANAGMENT at University of Newcastle%(1). From the perspective of the managers in this study ineffective managerial appraisals are those that fail to focus on the issue of management development and performance improvement.

When management reviews fail to give adequate attention to this issue the manager being .

Why managerial performance appraisals are ineffective

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