In an organization employees are the important asset and play a significant role in the progress of an organization. Nowadays firms usually focus on the human capital in the form of the employees by giving them training, assisting them in career development and also work on performance management in order to keep the employees motivated and dedicated by giving them feedback through performance appraisals.
Through these performance appraisals the employees are informed about their strengths that they can enhance and about their weaknesses that they can improve in the future. Multi-source performance appraisal or 360-degree evaluation is basically a process in which the feedback is collected from different people that interacts with employee like his supervisors, coworkers, bosses, can be stakeholders etc.
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It is an important tool for Human Resource Management as the feedback is collected through the questionnaires in which the employees are asked to rate the particular employee in his performance and behavior. Its main purpose is to provide a healthy feedback to the employee that can highlight his strong and weak points and also helps in the development and the training of the employee. The feedback that is collected from different people is discussed between the manager and the particular employee.
In this performance appraisal method the identity of a person who is filling the survey form is not shared with that particular employee. It also gives an impression to the employee that what other people think of him as in traditional appraisal method only the supervisor of particular employee gives the feedback about his performance but now due to involvement of people from different departments and different levels make the assessment less subjective and may be more accurate and honest.
If one person says something about the employee then their can be chances of biasness but if many people says the same thing and without the influence of someone then we can say that their might be something wrong or something good about that particular person. As nothing is perfect in this world, which means that there are some pros and cons of 360 degree evaluation method. This paper highlights the advantages and disadvantages of multi-source performance appraisal and also mentions some recommendation that can be used while implementing this performance appraisal method.
The main importance is given on the pros and cons of this method that can help the organization to decide whether to continue with the traditional appraisal method or to go with 360-degree evaluation method.
The multi-source performance appraisal method plays a vital role for employees. It makes the employees to think about their attitude and behavior and about others perception about them. It also identifies the areas in which a particular employee performed well and also where he could not come up to the expectations.
There are a lot of advantages and disadvantages of multi-source performance appraisal which are as follows: Advantages of Multi-Source Performance Appraisal Method: The main advantage of this method is that it provides feedback from different levels of organization and it is not restricted to supervisor or the manager as in the traditional performance appraisal method, as shown in the Appendix-I. In this method the employee is the centre of attention of all the people and the main goal of this method is to make the performance of that employee better than before as shown in Appendix-II.
Due to the use of rating from different people, 360 degree evaluation method enhances the quality of the performance procedures and gives a detailed view. This method is useful to the supervisor as it can provide more authentic assessment of the performance of the employee and can help to eradicate the chances of biasness due to which it becomes easier for the supervisor to come to a certain conclusion related to that particular worker. Another advantage of this method is that through this feedback the top managers can make decisions related to the promotion or sometimes extermination of an employee.
It also helps to highlight those areas in which the employee can be trained and it is also beneficial in the employee development. This appraisal method can be beneficial for those people who are in inferiority complex and underestimate themselves, to change their mindset and remain motivated after getting a positive feedback from their co-workers, bosses etc. One of the major benefits of this method is that it reduces the chance of discrimination as the feedback is collected from a very diverse group of individuals.
It is an important tool to bring a change in the performance of an employee that result in organizational effectiveness. It is also beneficial in making the performance of the employee parallel with business values. Customer service may be improved by the front line employees by getting feedback from the customers through this method as this provide the opportunity to the employees to think on those areas where they are not performing well. Due to above advantages of multi-source performance appraisal method many big companies like Johnson and Johnson Limited, IBM , Xerox etc. se this method and are very successful in today’s competitive world as this method is more accurate and gives more reliable information than the traditional performance appraisal methods. ?Disadvantages of Multi-Source Performance Appraisal Method: This method had a lot of advantages but there are some disadvantages that may create doubt of whether to opt for this method or not. This method is quite complex and time taking and also very costly as it involves a lot of hassle to make the survey form filled from different people and conclude the ratings.
This method can be dangerous and can produce very destructive results if it is not conducted properly and also if it is not done correctly then it can become a huge waste of time. This process can become difficult to handle and manage if there are too many people involved. One of the major disadvantages is that sometimes there are questionnaires in which the comments are not clearly understandable and needs some further explanation from those people who filled that form but due to anonymous feedback it is extremely difficult to trace out those people as a result of whom the results may not be so accurate or authentic.
Human beings are major part of this method as every individual have personal preferences so there are chances that some people may rank a person in such a way so that an employee looks good or sometimes bad and may also some people got together and form a group and gave evaluation in favor or against of someone. This will probably occur in those conditions when there is no proper checking or supervision that how the questionnaires are being filled.
Due to disadvantages of this method it can be difficult for an organization to select this performance appraisal method. So there are some recommendations that can help to control the pitfalls of this method. 360-degree evaluation method should be conducted carefully so that accurate results could be obtained. The managers who are supervising this whole procedure should identify those areas on which they want to collect information for a particular employee like questions related to leadership skills may be asked, or may be related to employee behavior with his subordinates etc.
It should also be considered that the questionnaire should not be so long that it consumes a lot of time and the employees utilize most of their work time in filling the survey form. Employees should be trained in such a way that the people who are giving the feedback remain positive and practical rather than considering personal grudges and also those who received the feedback should take it in a constructive way even if it indicates some of the weaknesses of an employee.
An employee can be given an option to choose the people from whom feedback he wants but the management has to make sure that they are not his friends or not so close to him. The manager or the supervisor who will communicate the feedback to the particular employee should deal him like a psychologist and should have some training that how to share the feedback with the employee so that he does not react very badly and not become demotivated from the feedback.
There are some people who do not want to change themselves so if the appraisal is related to those employees then the supervisor should be careful in communicating the feedback and also try to share the feedback in such a way that he tries to change himself. The identities of the appraisers remain confidential but there should be some source of identification through which the management can identify the person if there is some problem in understanding the comments in their filled form. The employee whose performance is being measured should be treated with great respect and esteem.
As the world is changing with the evolution of information technology and organizations are improving their technology in order to remain competitive, this performance appraisal method should be moved from the paper to the computerized system. Software should be installed in order to get online feedback of the multi-source performance appraisal, in this way employees can fill the form online and it will reduce the hassle and also lessen the time of conducting whole procedure. The feedback system should be aligned with the culture of an organization and also the rating instruments should be reliable so that accurate results could be obtained.
The 360-degree feedback is used by many organizations as this process has become very famous in today’s’ world. This method involves the feedback from different people which can make the feedback more reliable and authentic. Due to a lot of popularity of this method many organizations are now trying to adapt this method so that they could become more competitive in today’s global world. This tool should be used with a lot of care and responsibility so that the results that will be obtained should be authentic.
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