What Are Performance Management Tools?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 25 November 2019
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Performance management tools are resources that are utilized by human resources and management personnel to evaluate and hopefully enhance the performance of employees in the workplace. The idea with this type of tool is to accurately assess the skills and talents of each employee in relation to the tasks associated with the position currently held by that employee. When successful, the performance evaluations provide a clear understanding of the areas in which the employee excels as well as areas in which additional training or education would increase the employee’s ability to manage tasks associated with his or her work.

There are several common performance management tools that can be used in just about any environment. One of the basic tools for this type of process is creating an ongoing series of review systems that allow both the employee and the manager or HR contact to evaluate current performance in the workplace. The performance evaluations require that both parties review job performance and engage in dialogue regarding the perceived performance level of the employee in relation to company standards and also solicit input from the employee on his or her perception of the performance, the support of the company in terms of empowering the employee to perform assigned tasks, and any ideas the employee may have for increasing his or her proficiency in the workplace.


It is important to note that self-review systems are an important part of this process of performance evaluation. This means that while the manager or HR contact does have the responsibility of sharing with the employee how the company views current performance levels, the process also requires that the employee also share ideas about how to improve working conditions and thus make it possible to increase performance. Improvements may include physical changes to the work setting itself, or include arranging for continuing education opportunities that are relevant to the employee’s assigned duties. Using performance management tools such as employer and self-reviews, ongoing and remedial training programs, and similar tools can often produce excellent results that benefit both the employee and the employer in the long run.

When utilized to best effect, performance management tools can be a means of salvaging an employee who shows potential but does not currently perform at minimum company standards. The tools can also pave the way for employees to feel increased motivation to excel in the workplace, taking advantage of whatever support the employer offers to accomplish this goal. Should the performance management tools be used in a less than productive manner, the end result is often an employee who feels discouraged and ultimately leaves the company, either voluntarily or by termination.


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Post 3

@SarahGen-- Human resources mostly implement performance management systems although HR may play a role in determining which tools to use. Deciding on the strategies and systems is usually done by the performance improvement manager (PIM).

The PIM will determine which strategies would be best but will also meet with HR and administrators and seek their insights. The PIM is also responsible for analyzing the results of performance evaluations and decides on necessary changes in the organization to improve performance.

The PM at our workplace is great. He is very open minded and experienced. He has implemented several new performance management tools at our organization. Performance has already improved greatly.

Post 2

@SarahGen-- That's a good question. I'm not an expert on this topic but as far as I know, the classic methods of evaluation do not involve a lot of dialogue. There is no dialogue in confidential appraisals, which are still used by governments. Essay evaluations or other types of individual evaluations usually have limited dialogue. Keep in mind however that this also depends on management. Different managers will use employee performance management tools differently. So it can be a subjective issue.

Newer evaluation methods such as MBO (management by objectives) involves more dialogue because it's a multi-step evaluation system which relies on feedback and discussion.

Post 1

Which type of performance evaluation/appraisal system involves the most dialogue?

Also, who decides on performance management tools-- human resources or higher level administrators?

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