ShareKnowledge Blog

Why you should re-evaluate the way you conduct an employee evaluation

Amber Rasmussen April, 2017
employee evaluation

An employee evaluation is a very useful tool but these descriptive words tend to come to mind for many HR managers…tedious, time consuming, cumbersome and expensive. Not only do managers dislike them but employees also detest the yearly process, viewing an employee evaluation as a ‘necessary evil’ rather than an opportunity to have their voice heard and receive productive feedback.

Annual employee evaluation reviews are going away and that is partly due to the increase of Millennials in the workforce. According to the U.S. Bureau of Statistics Project, millennials will make up 40% of the workforce by 2020 and 75% by 2025. Needless to say, they have a huge impact on business.

Millennials have very different expectations of their place of employment, much more than generations of years past. People work more in teams, or have different supervisors on different projects which is a big factor in why it’s necessary to re-evaluate the way employee evaluations are conducted.

Here are a few Millennial-approved tips for improving your method of performance reviews:

FREQUENCY

Normally, a review is given yearly but Millennials want feedback in real time and more often. In fact, according to a study of six companies by Ivey Business Journal, having a quality performance review process that includes frequent, relevant feedback is the number one driver of engagement for millennials.

Increasing the amount of touch points with your employees throughout the year creates less pressure of getting a ‘bad score’ and an environment that is less threatening.

With the popularity of mobile and social learning tools, Millennials respond well to feedback in this manner. For instance, an employee can upload their latest project or achievement on a SharePoint MySite and their direct manager can simply leave a ‘thumbs up’ or a comment such as ‘great job.’

TWO-WAY COMMUNICATION

A traditional employee evaluation is typically a one-way street but it doesn’t have to be that way. Who really wants to endure an hour of criticism, right?

As we are well aware, Millennials are more informal than most and expect performance reviews to be more like a conversation and focus on the positive whenever possible - think coach or mentor vs. boss.

Again, if your company uses SharePoint, this is a great tool foster that two-way communication with your employees. Community forums are wonderful for sharing experiences, asking questions or helping your peers. There is even a gamification system in place that awards badges for ‘peer mentoring’ and the like.

Millennials really want their ‘boss’ to help contribute to their professional growth as well. Tying in a learning system like ShareKnowledge creates the perfect combination of training that Millennials want with social features that give them a positive feedback space to chat with their manager and peers. 

TOO VAGUE

Millennials often feel an employee evaluation is too vague and that their managers aren’t giving specific feedback. This is why you should give your expectations from the very beginning and make them very specific and measurable.

Because Millennials crave flexibility in their workplace, such as remote working, it makes sense that they’re ok with feedback that isn’t necessarily face-to-face. They are extremely tech savvy and expect that in employee evaluations.

Look for ways to give feedback digitally and incorporate it in real-time so that distance does not become a concern. 

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