A written performance review should provide an employee with a balance of positive and negative feedback on job performance and set goals for the upcoming year. A well-written performance review should effectively cover all the areas of an employee's work.
Written performance reviews create a benchmark for both employees and employers and provide an opportunity to establish necessary dialogue between worker and employer. The written review should be brief yet direct, creating a springboard for a healthy discussion. Having feedback in writing gives employees a written document to use as reference and for self-appraisal throughout the year.
Feedback from employers should be relevant and specific; it should highlight strengths and identify areas where corrective actions may be necessary. A written performance review should not be all positive or all negative; a healthy balance of the two will help employees improve.
When presenting written performance reviews, employers should encourage a discussion that provides feedback from the employee. Feedback for the employee and from the employee is a necessary part of job performance. Employers must provide constructive feedback to ensure business is operating at peak performance.
In addition to formal review periods, effective managers and employers should provide informal feedback throughout the year. Ongoing assessment is necessary for a well-run work environment. The formal review opportunity should recap items that have been addressed during the past year and should offer no surprises for the employee.