Rethinking the Annual Performance Review: Korn Ferry Survey of Professionals Shows Ongoing Performance Discussions and Real-Time Feedback are More Effective
-- Nearly Half Say Goals Set During Review Not Relevant a Year Later --
-- Nearly a Third Say Reviews Have No Impact or Negative Impact on Performance --
The vast majority of professionals surveyed (87 percent) say they have an annual performance review with their boss, and nearly a third (29 percent) say they spend seven or more hours preparing for the review.
However, nearly all (96 percent) say real-time feedback and ongoing performance discussions with their bosses are more effective than an annual review, and nearly half (46 percent) say that the goals they set in their reviews are no longer applicable a year later when they sit down to measure performance.
“Organizations realize that managing business performance is a very
dynamic process, so having a once-per-year meeting that hopes to both
evaluate and improve performance is a tall ask,” said
Nearly a third (30 percent) of respondents say annual reviews have no impact or a negative impact on their performance, and 43 percent say reviews had no impact or were unhelpful at helping them understand what to do more of or differently to improve future performance.
While respondents indicate they prefer ongoing feedback to annual reviews alone, they did offer some positive thoughts on portions of the annual review process. Ninety-two percent say 360 feedback from bosses, colleagues, direct reports and clients is useful, with 48 percent saying 360 reviews are extremely useful.
More than two-thirds (68 percent) say they look forward to their annual reviews, and 71 percent say it is fair to base annual compensation increases on the result of the annual review.
“When approached effectively, an annual review can be a positive tool in helping increase performance, but it shouldn’t be the only way success is measured,” said Lemaire. “Regular feedback can help employees course correct in real time and can help them adjust as business needs change.”
About the Survey – The
Do you have an annual performance review with your boss?
How effective is a performance review at improving your professional performance?
|Very effective||23 percent|
|Somewhat effective||47 percent|
|No impact||20 percent|
|Somewhat ineffective||6 percent|
|Very ineffective||4 percent|
Do you agree that all of the goals you established during your annual performance review are still relevant a year later when you analyze your progress?
Do you believe it is fair to base annual compensation increases on the results of your annual review?
Do you think performance reviews should be conducted just once a year?
What’s more effective, an annual review or real-time feedback and periodic performance discussions with your boss?
|Annual review||4 percent|
|Real-time feedback/periodic performance discussions||96 percent|
How useful is 360 review feedback (reviews from your peers, direct reports, clients, etc.)?
|Extremely useful||48 percent|
|Somewhat useful||44 percent|
|No impact||2 percent|
|Somewhat unhelpful||3 percent|
|Not helpful at all||3 percent|
How useful is a performance review in helping you understand what to do more of, or differently, to improve your future performance?
|Extremely useful||30 percent|
|Somewhat useful||27 percent|
|No impact||17 percent|
|Somewhat unhelpful||14 percent|
|Not helpful at all||12 percent|
Do you look forward to your performance reviews?
Taking into account the following steps: developing goals, reviewing them with your manager, and finalizing them, approximately how many hours do you spend on goal setting each year?
|Less than an hour||12 percent|
|1-3 hours||30 percent|
|4-6 hours||29 percent|
|More than 7 hours||29 percent|