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How to Measure Employee Performance


To properly review an individual employee’s performance, a great deal of Human Resources expertise is generally required. Some of the fundamental components underpinning the process are a full and detailed job description, a sliding scale method by which to rate each individual task and a separate methodology to determine whether these performed tasks serve the larger needs of the work group the employee belongs to.

Put another way, employee performance reviews are the purview of trained HR professionals, with their frequency and the participants in the process duly noted in the employee handbook. For those smaller businesses or individuals without the luxury of a full-time or even part-time or outsourced HR resource, there are various online manuals detailing the steps needed to create an employee performance system.

Review Job Performance

The first and most crucial detail is what kind of work the employee performs. If it’s in the range of something like accounting, a review is of course very specific and somewhat obvious. The numbers need to add up. If however the employee being evaluated works in the realm of customer service, logs of recorded calls may be needed, or customer testimonials will need to be gathered.

Match Job Description to Job Performed

A common mistake with many employment performance evaluations is that the metrics used for the review do not match the actual duties of the worker. Those performing the review should be prepared to begin by thoroughly confirming what the employee actually does, vs. what they may have been initially hired to do. They can then create their own performance review system or combine their approach with tools such as the Likert scale. It’s also wise to understand some of the broader factors that may be influencing an employee’s effectiveness, in order to be able to properly contextualize it. Research in China showed that an employee’s loyalty to an individual supervisor had a much greater ability to motivate them to perform on the job than a dedication to the company as a whole.



Read, Brendan B.. Home Workplace: A Handbook for Employees and Managers. San Francisco, CA: CMP Books, 2004. Print.

“Communicating with Numbers: Measuring Employee Performance.” for solutions to human resources issues. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 May 2011.

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