Conducting Your First Employee Review – What You Need to Know

Spectrum Staffing has been offering professional services in NJ for more than 25 years and has had the privilege of working with numerous hiring managers who truly care about being the best leaders they can. If you’re first starting out as a manager, you may not know how to most effectively evaluate your team and coach them to reach their potential. Here’s what you need to know to successfully conduct your first employee review:

Set Goals and Expectations

Employee reviews should ideally be an accountability tool to ensure employees are on track to accomplish pre-determined goals and meet expectations. Nothing should come as a surprise to your employees in the review; therefore, it’s essential to work with your employees to set measurable goals with clearly defined expectations of results, timeline, etc. This allows you both to be on the same page and know exactly what will be discussed when review time comes. 

Provide Real-Time Feedback

Reviews should serve as a time to discuss ongoing patterns and if they haven’t been addressed adequately. Don’t save up your feedback throughout the year to talk about during employee reviews. Make it a priority to provide real-time feedback so employees know exactly which situations and actions you’re referring to – otherwise, you risk them not knowing what specific events you’re talking about when you bring it up at a later time. 

Related post: Why Great Leaders Should Provide Real-Time Feedback to Employees

Keep Ongoing Notes

It’s a major undertaking to sit down and try to think about an entire year’s performance for each of your employees. Make review time easier and more thoughtful and accurate by keeping ongoing notes. Having a documented record of times you’ve offered feedback, both positive and areas that need improvement, ensures you are able to deliver reviews that truly reflect your employees’ performances and that nothing crucial is inadvertently left out. 

Prepare with Specific Examples

Before you meet with each of your employees for their reviews, prepare by evaluating the topics you plan to discuss. Vague feedback can leave employees confused and frustrated trying to determine what they need to keep doing or fix. For each point, be prepared with specific examples to support your claims – for instance, rather than just saying they’re great at being proactive and paying attention to detail, describe a time in which they spotted a major error and brought it to your attention. 

Make it a Conversation

During the actual review meeting itself, don’t simply deliver your feedback as your employee listens. The most effective reviews are ones that are a collaborative effort, so make it a conversation. Throughout the meeting, ask for your employee’s thoughts, questions, and suggestions. You never know what valuable insight you may gain from hearing the perspectives that could allow you to coach them to success. 

Attract top talent to join your team by working with Spectrum Staffing Services. We are one of the top providers of professional services in NJ and offer a range of staffing and recruitment services, from temporary to direct placement. Contact Spectrum today to learn more about our professional services.