360-Degree Feedback is one of the biggest developments in employee performance appraisals. With more companies using this practice, it is more likely to be an industry-wide standard. So what exactly is it, how does it work and what are the benefits of this approach?
An assessment for 360-degree feedback use data from members who work with them on a daily basis. But, the process takes place in an anonymous manner. The feedback members include both above and below in the line management. It provides a great insight into an employee’s contributions from a different perspective. It helps gather the information that is not visible in a singular appraisal process.
The initial step is to define a core team of people involved with the employee. They then fill in a detailed questionnaire about the employee in question. These questions are value based sliding scale to use for quantitative purposes. The values on the scale are then measured and normalised to gauge the points from the feedback.
Objectives of 360-degree feedback
One of the main aims of feedback is to gather information on how employees view their colleagues. Various skills are then assessed, varying from problem-solving to planning and goal-setting. Subjective areas are also taken in view to consider for leadership roles. This does help is understanding the personality of the employee and character.
Benefits of 360-degree feedback
Traditional appraisal methods are sometimes flawed. This is true when a line manager has little interaction with the employee. Certain instances of these are people working offshore or remote working. By using the feedback, the assessment is able to gather data from a wide sphere of people. This helps to give a much practical and rounded view of the performance. This is different from unilateral line management feedback. Such opportunities help uncover areas where the employees excel. Also, it helps find potential areas where they need to develop further in the future.
The feedback helps businesses produce a generalised career development plan for their employees. This, in turn, can help them pinpoint what they need to do to improve on career and well being. But, this feedback should not be set as a tool to assess employee performance objectives.
360-degree feedback – Best practices
Planning is vital if 360-degree feedback is to be effective for an organisation. Companies need to have a clear goal and purpose for introducing this feedback. And most of all the senior managers should involve themselves from the start. This highlights how much the management values the process.
In an ideal scenario, it is worthwhile to start this off as a pilot project. A pilot feedback session should be set in motion to gather the pulse. The findings from the pilot session get shared with the staff members. A periodic review of the process will help fine-tune any gaps.
Companies now are using the opportunity to adopt the best practice around this. And thereby put in place the process in the right way, so employees can achieve rich rewards in their work.