Just to begin with, it is prudent to note that there is no universal definition for the term performance appraisal. Different scholars have defined the term different. According to Yong, (1996), performance appraisals are a tool which is used for evaluating and grading the activities done by different organizations, on all the organization's employees either annually or periodically. It is the grading and evaluation of an individual behavior. Furthermore, Gomez-Mejia, (2005) defines a performance appraisal as entailing “identification, measurement and management of the human resource performance within the organization.” (p.225). Therefore, performance appraisal will be defined as the process through which the organization identifies, observe measure and then finally develop the performance of the available human resource in the organization
Ideally, the tremendous transformation processes which currently is sweeping the political, economic and the social areas calls for the organization to respond rapidly to the needs of the rapid development of both the global strategies as well as the operational levels. Human resource management mainly focuses on performance management system, job design, recruitment, compensation and resource planning among others. However, out of the above-mentioned functions of the human resource management, performance evaluation plays a critical role in the success of the organization both locally and globally. Performance evaluation is more important than the other functions of the human resource management. This is because it reveals the success of the human resource management in different field such as employee selection, adaptation and placement among others.
Evaluation process (strength and weakness)
The process of evaluating performance appraisal takes place around the Interpersonal factors. These are among the factors that affect the accuracy of the performance appraisal tool. During this process appropriate performance appraisal measures are develop to determine effectiveness of the system. According to Thurston and McNally (2010), interpersonal factors are factors, which are related to the treatment the appraise gets from an appraiser. These factors influence the outcome of the interaction between the manager and the employee, they are deemed to be important factors in the process of performance appraisal. It is important that the person carrying out evaluation treats the people being evaluated with care and concern. In short, trust and fairness should prevail in the whole process. This is because the absence of trust and fairness in the process is likely to render the whole process useless. The process would be exercise throughout the entire management hierarchy of an organization. This implies that the management would have to develop goods relationship between his or her worker to ensure there is adequate communication. This would enhance the evaluation process hence rewarding all employees in accordance to their performance regardless of the position they hold.
Strategies to improve the performance appraisal process
One of the ways through which organizations can enhance performance is by developing a performance culture. The organization can also enhance performance through implementing performance management processes. The corporate assumption relating to the management shows that the culture of evaluating the performance of employees in the organization enables them to engage fully in the daily operation of the organization (Boswell, 2001). Just to flashback, most performance appraisal systems initially were used to stress the characteristic of the employee and his abilities among others. However, in the modern era, employee appraisals have been modified to emphasize the mutual participation of the employee within the organization. The appraisal has been meant to enhance productivity of the organization through rewarding the employees who managed to show positive performance towards the success of the organization.
Managers, advocates for the use of performance appraisal in different organization across the globe because it attributes to the organization’s effort for enhanced productivity with the development of accurate performance appraisal tools, which are used to evaluate the performance of different individuals in the organization. Performance appraisal should get more attention or should be fully implemented by the management system throughout the management hierarchy in order to facilitate a high level of productivity. This would boost the employees’ morale to work effectively and efficiently thus increasing the output of an organization.
Wendy R. Boswelljohn W. Boudreau, (2000). Employee Satisfaction with Performance Appraisals and Appraisers: The Role of Perceived Appraisal Use”, Human Resource development, Quarterly, vol. 11. no.3, Fall.