by Susan Jeffery
12 Jun 2019
4 Trends Redefining Performance Management
We have a world of technology at our fingertips, but is it actually leading to stronger, more agile organizations? How do these new tools serve as the catalysts for more productivity and greater executions of companies’ larger marketplace ambitions? Here are four trends that are redefining performance management; read on to learn how you can expand HR’s role in boosting company success!
Embrace the Digital Transformation
New technologies are capturing personal and professional data, and they’re having a tremendous effect on streamlining and simplifying operations. Want to increase the effectiveness of meetings? Could your goal-setting initiatives lead to more growth? Software and mobile-friendly apps can help on both. Blending this digital evolution into your overall workforce planning initiatives will increase efficiency and lead to stronger performance analysis.
These technologies often fall under the umbrella trend of behavioral economics. Facilitating a more analytical approach to operational efficiency leads to an increase in apps that teach and even refine themselves according to users’ behaviors. They can even help offload and simplify work for your team. Apps that analyze weather and traffic patterns, for example, can help companies decide (and even automate) optimal times for travel, shipping, etc. The end result of these new technologies is breaking down the HR silo and helping that department become a bigger driver of the company
"Performance management is being reinvented for a new, forward-looking purpose: to serve as an efficient, focused business process that helps improve employee engagement and drives business results." -Deloitte1
Rethink Performance Management
Yearly performance reviews, once a staple of corporate life, are now looked down on. The new trend is leveraging smart performance tools that promote frequent feedback, support evolving goals, and provide real-time analysis on individual employee potential and overall organizational trends.
Companies are prioritizing continuous feedback as a way to gauge worker effectiveness. Also, another growing trend is to evaluate the performance of managers from a leadership perspective (as opposed to their daily tasks). The software to analyze all this is young, but is maturing every day.
Rising Employee Engagement
Studying and prioritizing engagement grew in popularity in the 1990s when workers were classified as at-will employees. This made it easier to let go of employees, but it was a knife that cut both ways. While companies could more easily reduce their head count in tough times, employees were inspired to figure out what made them happy and motivated. This led to companies trying to define and build their own culture as a way of inspiring worker productivity. The result was more proactive recruiting of workers who ‘fit the mold,’ investments in stronger workforce management tools, and supportive office cultures that empowered employees to contribute in newer, more creative ways.
One example is the flattening of hierarchies. Employees who have The Next Big Idea are more inspired to create and share when they are the ones who can pitch it and take ownership of it. Another engagement strategy is making performance management a continuous process that delivers real-time feedback, rather than waiting until the end of the year, to ensure that the evolving mutual goals of workers and companies are more easily met.
Insight into Your Company and Employees
Growing businesses face many challenges: ineffective performance reviews, disengaged employees, engaging and retaining top talent, and many more. Having a talent management solution with robust reporting and analytics is one way to stay on top things before they become issues. You need to be able to go beyond running reports to visualizing your team and where their strengths and weaknesses are. With powerful analytics and reporting, HR and business leaders are easily able to analyze employee performance data to reveal training needs, uncover organizational trends, perform succession and compensation planning, and make strategic decisions that impact their bottom line.
New tech trends are disrupting HR processes and giving those leaders a bigger role in the overall company. Welcoming the digital transformation allows companies to get more real-time data on everything from workforce management to operational decisions. Software developments are leading to more meaningful feedback and the continuous management of goals and career growth. Engagement is becoming not just a part of culture, but also a strategy for driving innovation and productivity. And, in-depth reporting and analytics allow companies to make more data focused decisions. Understanding and adopting these trends can help make your organization stronger and more agile.
1 Deloitte, "Performance management", https://www2.deloitte.com/gh/en/pages/human-capital/articles/performance-management-redesign-human-capital-trends-2015.html.