The state of performance management and review

A new study suggests a potential gap in employee versus employer expectations for performance management and growth .
A new study suggests a disconnect between employees and business leaders in terms of how they each view the state of performance feedback and management.

The Growth Divide Study, conducted by Wakefield Research and commissioned by Reflektive, involved 500 executives and 2,000 office professionals in the US doing two different surveys in March this year.

It was found that while 94% of executives are confident that employees are satisfied with their company’s performance review process, the reality is most employees feel the process is outdated (61%) — most commonly because it’s often incomplete (62%) or too generic (22%).

In fact, while nearly 70% of companies still cling to an annual or bi-annual performance review schedule, more than half of office professionals say that’s not nearly enough – they want performance check-ins at least once a month.

Almost all (94%) actually would prefer their manager address mistakes and development opportunities in real-time, which enables more agility through coaching and behavior changes to address skills gaps and shifting strategies.

Fewer than one-third learned about performance measurement criteria when they started with the company, but most found out much later; 16 percent say they still don’t know.

Exacebating the issue is the fact that most executives don’t make conducting performance reviews a high priority: more than half (58%) frequently reschedule or delay employee reviews because they didn’t have enough time to prepare and end up spending an average of 15 hours of personal time preparing for an annual review.

Additionally, despite a wide range of digital tools available, 46% of executives say they still use hard copy written forms for reviews, a practice which is inefficient, creates more work, wastes paper and fails to meet the sophistication and sustainability expectations of today’s connected workforce.

“The data from across many industries confirms what we’ve been innovating for since 2014: business performance and employee success hinges on real-time, ongoing feedback among leaders, managers, and employees,” said Rajeev Behera, CEO, Reflektive.

“In the same way that overcoming the Digital Divide in prior decades was critical for widespread connectivity and prosperity, the ability to help bridge this new ‘Growth Divide’ with technology is a differentiator when it comes to continuous learning and development, goal alignment, employee performance, and growth,” he added.

The dissatisfaction employees feels towards the infrequency, inefficiency, outdated process and lack of goal alignment in traditional review methods indicates unnecessary gaps – and suggests that valuable opportunities for improvement, growth, and achievement have been unaddressed, for both the company and its employees.


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