When a company requests that an employee complete a self-appraisal, the employee should write it as openly, honestly and transparently as possible while keeping a focus on career goals. People shouldn't focus only on the goals of the job they presently have.
A meaningful self-evaluation doesn't downplay accomplishments, but emphasizes the employee's contributions to the organization during the past year. At the same time, employees should candidly acknowledge any mistakes, but not focus on them. They want to communicate that they've learned from them, and have a plan of action to work on those areas. Self-appraisers should be specific about requesting what additional training and information they need from the employer to fulfill their long-term career plans.