360 appraisals are a highly useful and powerful tool for companies when implemented correctly. But many companies make mistakes during the process that can jeopardise the usefulness of the entire project.
Here’s just a few of the most common mistakes that companies can make – but which are all easily avoidable if you have the advice of a 360 appraisal expert such as Appraisal360:
Ask the right questions….get the right answers
There’s nothing worse after going through a 360 appraisal process than ending up with reams of useless data. Garbage in, garbage out….so make sure you ask the right questions before you even start to ask for responses. Remember that your questions need to be in plain English, and written in a way so that people can easily understand what is being asked. At Appraisal360 our standard questions are ready-written for you, and our new Profiler tool allows you to build your own questionnaires. We’re also here to help advise you on your questionnaires. So there’s no excuse for your respondents not to understand the questions.
From the top
Make sure that everyone within the company – right from the very top – supports the 360 appraisal process and is open about the positivity it will bring to the business. 360 appraisals are there to help empower employees and benefit their career – so make sure people are vocal about their support, especially at senior levels and above. If the man at the top says it’s a good thing, then this will filter through to those being asked to give and receive the feedback, giving better results.
Getting an email asking you to give feedback for a colleague’s 360 appraisal can be daunting if you don’t understand what it’s for, and why it’s being done. The automatic response is that someone may be out of a job if you don’t answer positively. But this isn’t what 360 appraisals are all about. So make sure that people understand before any 360 programme is implemented what it is – and crucially – isn’t there to do. An easy way to avoid fears about giving feedback is to use a third party such as Appraisal360 to do this for you. We can also provide bespoke, branded 360 systems so it looks like a seamless, integrated part of your company.
Using the data correctly
You must decide beforehand what you’re going to do with the resulting data from your 360 appraisal system. Remember, it’s designed to identify employees strengths and weaknesses, and give them personal development plans and achievable goals to further their careers. If you have the right tools in place, the possibilities are endless. Appraisal360’s unique software, for example, allows you to view results from your entire assessed population if you wish at a glance, so you can identify any hot and cold spots that need attention.