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What are the techniques of Performance Appraisal?

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The techniques of appraisal have been divided into two categories: The modern and the traditional techniques. While the traditional methods base their findings on the personality trades of an individual like creativity, responsibility, and leadership, the modern techniques laid more stress on the evaluation of work results. The traditional methods or techniques are:

1. Confidential report: It is used for promotion and transfer of an employee and is prepared by the immediate superior who describes in detail the strength and weaknesses along with major achievements and failures of the employee. The personality and behavior of the employee also find mention in this report.

2. Essay or free form method: As the name suggests the appraiser write a short essay detailing the performance of the employee. It is a very time consuming method and is prone to buys also as specific performance dimensions are not considered. The quality of appraisal also depends on the writing skills of the appraiser. It is also difficult to compare two Essay appraisals as there is no common criterion for the appraiser.

3. Strayed ranking method: This is the old and simplest method of performance appraisal. In this method ranks are assigned relatively to all the employees working in the same unit and doing the same job without analyzing their performance. The method biased as the ranking is not based on the specific performance measures of a job. It can be cumbersome if the number of employees is very large. The other limitations of this method are that it only tells how an employee stands in comparison with other employees.

4. Forced distribution method: In this method the evaluator is required to distribute his rating in the form of normal frequency distribution. Employees are shown in categories that range from poor to excellent by the evaluator. This method was evolved by Joseph Tiffin but it also suffers from certain limitations as the performance criteria related to a job are not used and the reasons for assigning a category to particular employee are not clear.

5. Graphic or linear rating scale: In this method a numerical scale is used which indicates different degrees to a particular trait. These traits can be initiative dependability creativity attitude loyalty emotional stability and co-ordination. The evaluator gives a particular ranking on each trait to every employee. Two types of rating scales are used: Continuous and discontinues. In first type degree of a trait is measure along a continuum like 0 1 2 3. IN discontinues rating scale boxes are used to show the different degrees of the traits like (I) no interest (II) indifferent (III) Interesting (IV) enthusiastic (V) very enthusiastic.

6. Critical incident method: This method was developed after a research by the armed forces of United States of the 2nd world war. It is based on a principal that there are some significant acts in the behavior and performance of every employee which can lead to the success of failure on the job. The supervisor keeps a record of these events which can be good or bad and also records the behavior of the employee during such an event. The ratings of the employee depend on the positive or negative behavior during these events. This method also has certain limitations like it is cumbersome and time consuming and a lot of important information is lost while coating the incident after a considerable gap of time. Continues record keeping is also not possible as such events keep on happening frequently. The bios by the supervisor in reporting these incidents can also not be ruled out completely.

7. Group appraisal method: Employees are rated by a group of people comprising the immediate supervisor of the employee and other supervisor who have the knowledge of the employee work along with the concerned head of the department and a personnel expert. This group determines the standards and then measures the actual performance of the employee. It suggests creative measures after analyzing the causes of poor performance. Though it is a time consuming method, it is free from bias.

Do check the methods of performance appraisal here
>What are the modern methods of performance appraisal?

This article has been written by KJ Singh a MBA Graduate from a prestigious Business School In India
Article Published:September 23, 2011
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