How Cloud Technology Is Supporting the Human Revolution
Being at a leadership level in my position at SAP, I’ve regularly had to conduct “performance reviews” for the employees on my team.
Even after having conducted hundreds of them, I’ve tried to think back to when I was a young professional and this annual occurrence popped up on my calendar. Frankly, it helped me prepare because I remember the angst I felt in the past surrounding these ultra-formal conversations with my boss, knowing that it would eventually become a permanent part of my HR file.
For the sake of creativity, I’ve tried not to adhere to the cliched format–beginning with a compliment, including a chunk of constructive criticism, and ending with yet another compliment–but some things are, unfortunately, difficult to eliminate.
For instance, the windows scheduled for these discussions have been relatively short, and a considerable amount of prep always needs to be done–while still maintaining focus on my team’s overarching objectives and goals. As any manager can attest, having to do detailed evaluations in a condensed amount of time can be exhausting.
Deloitte conducted a survey revealing that 58 percent of managers felt the annual performance review did not serve its purpose. Adobe dropped the annual performance review process based on surveys that revealed that annual performance reviews required 80,000 hours of time from 2,000 managers, equivalent to the full-time work of 40 employees. More to the point, the data showed that, relative to the time devoted to them, performance reviews were largely ineffective.
Along with Accenture, Adobe, Deloitte, Facebook, GE, Microsoft and many others, my company, SAP, has opted to replace annual performance reviews with ongoing “talks” to provide real-time feedback to our employees, with our internal research suggesting the majority of employees are consistently engaged and motivated.