Introducing Appraisal Notes

Hot on the heels of the last new feature we introduced (Competency Comments), over the weekend we released another new feature – “Appraisal Notes”.

It allows HR and HR Partners to add notes to employee’s appraisals. It can be used as a stand-alone feature or in combination with the Appraisal Tags feature we released late last year.

Please get in touch to find out more.

 

Introducing Competency Comments

Over the weekend we released a new feature for competency based reviews. It allows managers and direct reports to add comments against individual competencies when reviewing performance against them.

As a bit of background – before the release, if you are using Competencies in PerformanceHub, then at appraisal time the manager and direct report are required to select a performance level for each competency in the DR’s role. The available performance levels are based on your competency framework.

The new Competency Comments feature gives employees the opportunity to add comments to each selection. A little ‘comments’ icon will show users if notes are available and indicate if notes are mandatory (see later).

To turn Competency Comments on, just go to the Configuration page and under the Competencies section, you’ll see a new option for comments. If you enable comments, another option will appear to ask if you want to make comments mandatory. If comments are mandatory, both the manager and direct report must add comments to each competency, otherwise the appraisal cannot be marked as finished.

New feature: Bonus objectives and Objective weights

In this release:

  • Overall objectives performance summary chart
  • Objective weights
  • Bonus objectives support
  • Various stability and performance updates

We recently updated PerformanceHub with three new features to help get the most out of objectives.

 

1) Overall objectives performance summary chart
A new chart has been introduced in appraisals to give employees a summary of performance against all objectives.

It takes the average rating for all objectives and draws both the manager’s and direct report’s results in the chart, like this:

Average objective performance

The chart is particularly useful when doing an appraisal because it gives you a quick overview of performance against objectives without having to open each objective up.

 

2) Weighted Objectives
When enabled (in HR Admins Configuration screens) all objectives get a weighting. Objective weights can be used to show the relative importance of each objective, and when applied, objectives are listed in weight order, with the highest weighting at the top. Weights are set by the line manager by simply clicking on the icon.

The new weight icon shows, even when objectives are in the list view:

Objective Weights

 

In addition, if set, an objective’s weight is used when calculating the average rating in the new chart mentioned above. The greater the objective’s weight, the more influence performance on that objective has in the chart.

 

3) Bonus Objectives
PerformanceHub now supports bonus objectives. You can enable the feature in the HR Admin Configuration screens. There are a number of configuration sub-options to tell PerformanceHub whether everyone is entitled to a bonus or just some employees. And whether all objectives are bonus objectives or just some. If not all employees are eligible for a bonus, then HR can mark the individuals who are via their profile in the Users tab.

A new icon is used to indicate weather an objective will form part of the bonus payment:

Bonus Objectives

The faded ‘present’ tells the user that the objective does not form part of the bonus calculation and the solid present means that the objective will be included in the calculation.

The line manager decides which objectives are bonused. All they need to do is click on the icon and confirm the change.

HR can generate a new report for bonuses, which provides you with the overall bonus calculations for all eligible employees.

The bonus calculation takes into account an individual’s performance against each bonused objective and a new parameter in the objective rating scheme which tells PerformanceHub how much bonus should be paid for each performance level. For example, you can configure the system such that ‘Good’ performance gives 100% of bonus, better performance gives more than 100% and anything under good gives 0%, but it’s up to you, it’s entirely flexible.

If objectives are weighted, the weighting is also taken into consideration in the bonus calculation.

If you are interested in setting up bonus objectives, then please get in touch and we can help you set it all up.

 

Final Notes
We squished a few bugs, and made some changes to speed up certain pages and reports.

New Feature: One-to-One Meetings Support

We recently released a new version of PerformanceHub which includes support for One-to-one meetings. You can enable this feature at any time. One-to-one meetings are widely acknowledged as a critical mechanism for ensuring effective communication up and down the organisation, and for building employee engagement.

 

In this post we give an overview of this new feature.

 

When you enable this feature, you get to specify the default meeting interval:

Meeting schedule

Managers can choose to change the meeting frequency on a per-direct-report basis.

 

After having a one-to-one meeting, the manager and/or the direct report can record meeting notes:

Meeting Notes

Both parties don’t have to record notes. For example a manager may ask her direct reports to write up their meetings, and only add her own notes where she wants to add something to the record.

 

After confirming a meeting, you’ll automatically get an entry for your next meeting, with a tentative date (based on the meeting frequency):

More meeting notes

You can record notes in this placeholder, for example as part of your preparation, or to build up a list of topics during the time between meetings.

 

The meeting record for a past meeting is locked 7 days after you confirm the meeting. These meeting notes form part of the historical record for employees, so it’s important that neither party can go back and change the record long after the event. A meeting record is locked even if neither party has recorded any notes.

HR have an interface for browsing all employees, and seeing the meeting configuration at a glance:

Meeting reports

From this HR can see where meetings are overdue, and where managers have changed the meeting interval from the default they set. Clicking on the View button against an employee brings up a meeting viewer, which lets HR page through the meeting records:

HR meetings view

 

PerformanceHub is always evolving, and most of that is driven by customer needs and feedback. Please let us know what you think of this feature, and share any ideas for improving it.

 

PerformanceHub in your team colours

No need to hide from the Brand Police anymore, PerformanceHub can now support company themes.

You have always been able to add your company logo to PerformanceHub, making it look like a tool in your intranet armoury, but with the introduction of themes, you can now totally change the look of the user interface to match your company’s colour scheme.

If you want to try on a new look, drop us a note and we’ll make one specially for you.

 

New release: Improved text handling

 

Over the weekend we released the latest version of PerformanceHub. Here’s a quick note to tell you what’s new.

Improved text input

Text fields that can contain a lot of text will now automatically grow in size as you type. A simple change, but it will help people concentrate on what’s important – the content.

Better ‘forgotten password’ flow

We have noticed that when people forget their password, they will keep trying to guess and may not notice that they can simply reset it and start over. We figured that this could be quite frustrating, so we now make the password reset function a lot more obvious if you try 3 incorrect passwords in a row.

Dashboard Tidy-up

We have given the user’s dashboard a title and changed the layout of the top slightly to make it a little less daunting.

Squished bugs

  • If an external person was asked for provide feedback, the email they received was missing their name.
  • If the grandfather comments were changed on an appraisal, the ‘unsaved changes’ text didn’t appear in the correct place on the appraisal form
  • When using Internet Explorer 8, if you cloned an objective and the description of the original objective had multiple lines of text made with carriage returns, then the carriage returns were not copied to the new objective.

New PerformanceHub Release

Chairman support, competency reports and an improved Grandfather experience

 

PerformanceHub now supports a new special type of user – ‘Chairman’.

You can now add a chairman to PerformanceHub and optionally make the chairman the CEO’s manager.

If you make the chairman the CEO’s manager, the CEO can be appraised by the chairman and can have ‘personal objectives’, i.e. objectives that are not company objectives, and are proposed and agreed between the CEO and chairman.

If you just want to add a chairman to the system because they have a direct report you want to be appraised (such as a PA) but don’t want to appraise the CEO, then you don’t have to make the chairman the CEO’s manager.

 

Other updates in this release

Competency information added to the Excel report

We have added competency review information to the Excel report emailed on a Monday.

The new information allows you to find people who are performing/under-performing in role and find people with particular competencies and ratings. For example, find everyone in the company that has excellent communication skills.

If you are not already subscribed to the report, HR admin users can subscribe by logging in, clicking your name and selecting Reports.

Rolled-up Grandfather dashboard notifications

We noticed that some users had a lot of dashboard notifications about grandfather meetings. To avoid cluttering up their dashboards with repetitive information, we rolled the alerts up to make the dashboard less daunting.

Improved appraisal status reports

We have added a new column to the appraisal status reports to show when appraisals are waiting for Grandfather sign-off.

Squished a bug

In some circumstances, if a user’s manager was changed, their objectives were not reassigned to the new manager. This prevented the new manager from completing their part of objective reviews. The bug fix prevents this from happening in the future. Any objectives that got into this funny state before the bug fix was released will be updated.

New release: Objective types and more

 

Today we released the latest version of PerformanceHub. In it, we have added support for employee objective types, introduced new features into HR’s dashboard and have improved the way review periods are selected.

 

Here are the details.

Development Objectives and Functional Objectives

Users can mark objectives as either Functional Objectives or Development Objectives, and HR can track progress against each objective type separately in the KPI charts and weekly Excel report.

This allows HR to track progress against personal development activities vs functional deliveries, and ensure your managers are taking development of staff seriously.

 

Other updates in this release

 

A more intelligent review period selector

PerformanceHub will select the most appropriate review period more often. Before this change, if you didn’t explicitly select a review period, PerformanceHub would select the current review period. Early on in a period, people are still wrapping up the previous period rather than starting to set objectives in the new one. PerformanceHub will now select the previous period until the appraisal deadline date has passed.

 

3 new HR and CEO dashboard entries

These new entries help:

  • Keep track of the appraisal completion process and provides a reminder button for you to send email to managers lagging behind the process
  • Keep track of the interims and provides a reminder button for lagging managers.
  • Keep track of the appraisal balancing process, provides onscreen completion rates and provides a reminder button

 

We squished a couple of bugs too

  • Managers were being alerted to unlinked draft objectives their direct reports had created.
  • The CEO couldn’t reconsider a completed company objective.

New Feature: Performance Feedback

PerformanceHub

Today, we released our latest feature – Performance Feedback

 

Performance Feedback

 

PerformanceHub now allows employees to give performance feedback to other people in your organisation. It allows managers and their direct reports to ensure performance reviews include opinions and ratings from all relevant people across the business, and also enables employees to give ad-hoc feedback on anyone at any time (for instance, to acknowledge a job well done).

Performance Feedback is a configurable feature you can turn on whenever you like, and there are two independent configuration options:

  • Requested feedback: If enabled, employees will be able to explicitly request feedback for use in their appraisal, as can their manager. When asking for feedback, an employee (or their manager) can create one or more questions which can then be asked of one or more people. In this way, employees can use the feature to make simple feedback requests, or create bespoke 180 or 360 degree feedback around specific subjects. People asked do not have to be in your organisation either, which is great for those employees who have a lot of contact with the outside world.
  • Unprompted feedback: If enabled, employees will be able to provide feedback on others at any time without the need to be asked first.

 

For a full list of PerformanceHub functionality, check out the features page  here.

New Feature: Mission Statements

PerformanceHub is on a Mission. Are you?

We have just released a new feature – “Mission Statements“.

Your CEO can now publish a mission statement on the Company tab for all your employees to rally behind. Combined with Company Goals and Company Objectives, your CEO can now communicate the full strategy; from your company’s  Mission, to its long term Goals, to timely Objectives right the way down to each individual’s deliverables.

Not enabled the Goals feature? You can from the PerformanceHub configuration page.

There’s no need to enable Mission Statements, they show up as soon as your CEO chooses to publish one.

It works for schools too – Head Teachers can set a Mission Statement in the School tab.

With this release, we are laying the foundations for some exciting Talent Management features we’re sure you’ll love – watch this space. In researching talent management, we learnt how something as simple as providing a clear mission statement can help with employee engagement, leading to better performance and improved retention.