Currently, most organizations do employee evaluations every six months or yearly. Both these frequencies are way too long to be useful. With standard or traditional evaluation forms, it makes this process complicated, inaccurate, and hard to track over time. It’s understandable that organizations want to limit this old process because of the extra workload for supervisors.
Determining how often your employees should be evaluated is dependent on a few things. First, how easy is your evaluation form? Second, how much time do you need to give support to correct issues? Third, are you dealing with a new employee? Fourth, is the data you are generating useful? Read below to learn more.
Easy Evaluation Form
If your current evaluation form is longer than one page and has primarily written answers, get rid of it! You need to have a fast and easy way to do evaluations. Supervisors don’t need extra work. In fact, your supervisors should be excited about evaluations because they get to see how their support and training have been helping their team.
To learn more about creating an easy employee evaluation form see my previous article here.
Time to Give Support
The primary reason to do evaluations is to see how your supervisors need to support and train their teams. So, the frequency at which evaluations are given must allow for this support and training to be given.
Think of your industry and the time it takes to learn new tasks. Some tasks may be simple, but others may take years to master. The period between evaluations should allow for time to gauge improvement on most tasks.
New or Probationary Employees
New or probationary employees always need the most support. Naturally, you should be evaluating them more often. A good rule of thumb would be to do evaluations at least twice as often as your regular employees. During this shorter period, they may not become proficient with hard tasks, but simple tasks should get mastered.
I would recommend that you evaluate new employees weekly for the duration of the probation period. This will allow your supervisors to quickly identify problem areas that need support.
Sometimes current or long-time employees get forgotten because they have mastered the work. This should not happen because we are all people and may have career goals still. If you continue to support all employees, they will become loyal and may not leave the organization. Ideally, you want employees to stay for a long time and get promoted so that organizational knowledge is not lost.
I recommend that all employees get evaluated at least monthly and maybe every two weeks when they move into a new role. Supervisors do not need to do evaluations all in one day! Depending on the size of their team they could do one a week or once a day as long as one gets done for each employee during the regular period of time.
The numerical or percentage data you receive from an easy employee evaluation form will allow you to track trends. The average time to train a new employee is valuable. The average time to adjust to a new position is valuable. The data may also reflect on the performance of the supervisors. This data when combined with management evaluations and employee engagement surveys can give valuable organization-wide trends.
Track each employee individually, group this data together for each team, and then group together again to see divisional or organizational-wide data.
The next steps for you would be to support and train your supervisors to do and report the results of these evaluations. Consider a shared document or spreadsheet where each supervisor can report data as they complete evaluations. Then human resources or a high-level manager can analyze the data and create top-level reports.
Learn more about how to use Google Docs and Drive with some of these resources from Amazon.