Ideally, a proper performance appraisal system should help managers and employers evaluate the performance of their employees in a fair and objective manner. Rather unfortunately, many organizations tend to underestimate the importance of having a proper performance appraisal system in place. Consequently, most employee reviews are far from objective and tend to suffer from what is known as a performance bias.
This is a situation where an employee is not evaluated on his/her’s true performance in the workplace but instead on a variety of other subjective factors. These can range from his/her’s relationship with said manager i.e. closer relationships mean better reviews or perhaps his/her degree of visibility around the workplace i.e. the employee is perceived by many to be a hard worker but in reality does little-to-no value added work in the workplace.
The key to effective performance management lies in your system’s ability to measure the practical performance of each individual employee. By analyzing the practical performance of each individual employee, you can get a good picture of how they are able to perform on an individual basis.
From here, supervisors can reward particularly high performing employees with incentives and rewards while also working closely with less effective employees to determine how their performance can be improved.
An effective performance management system should allow managers and employees to work together in order to set achievable, clearly designated goals. Setting goals that are to be achieved within a agreed time enables the manager to quantify the performance of said employee over a period time while giving the employee a direction to work towards to.
Previously, Singapore Airlines employed a appraisal system in which employee incentive points were docked whenever they took sick leave for common ailments such as the flu. This system has been heavily criticized by many SIA employees as this style of appraisal was seen to discourage genuinely sick employees from taking time off work to rest. Until recently, this system was in place until an incident involving a SIA air stewardess who was found dead in her hotel room resulted in SIA restructuring their current appraisal system to look at other areas of performance.
This scenario highlights the importance of having an effective and fair appraisal system. SIA’s previous evaluation system failed to take into account factors such as cabin crew performance and customer feedback which is much more relevant. While it is unproven, this rather antiquated approach of “working through the sickness” may have indirectly led to the death of a long-serving employee.
In many Asian cultures, it is a common situation where taking sick leave or an MC is frowned upon and in SIA’s case, active discouraged. The antiquated perception among many in such situations is that coming to work sick is a sign of dedication and responsibility. Consequently, many Malaysian and Singaporean companies tend to have an unofficial policy of discouraging MCs. For example, there can be situations where an employee’s performance evaluation and remuneration are affected by them taking sick days off.
While this policy is effective at discouraging employee absenteeism on the short-term, this approach can have disastrous effects on the long-term. Employees will perceive the organization as being uncaring and callous towards their wellbeing and will naturally move on as quickly as possible. On the long-term, the organization will find themselves suffering from a large turnover of staff which means that any savings earned from reduced employee absenteeism is offset by the increased hiring and training costs.
Along with this, discouraging a sick employee from resting can be detrimental for the health of said employee as well as those of other employees as they will be exposed to bacteria and viruses from the infected individual.
A good appraisal system has the potential to significantly boost an organization’s performance while keeping employee morale high. This is why we, at iqDynamics have developed a comprehensive performance appraisal system that takes care of all your performance management needs. Visit our website, to learn more about how you can benefit from our solutions today.