Incorporating a performance management system into your business can be an important tool for maintaining competitive advantage. This often involves the implementation of 360-degree, or multi-faceted, feedback. Your human resources function should select the specific 360-degree feedback plan that fits your organization and determine the best method for implementing it.
What is 360-Degree Feedback?
The term, 360-degree feedback refers to multi-source or multi-rater data regarding employee assessment. In essence, several individuals complete a questionnaire for the purposes of rating a fellow employee regarding several areas of the employee’s work-related activity. Typically, employees complete an online questionnaire or feedback form that is kept entirely confidential.
The system of providing 360-degree feedback is a process through which employees are able to receive comments related to their performance from co-workers and managers. The intention is that employees will use this feedback to identify their strengths and weaknesses. Once the recipients have gained insight into their performance via this feedback tool, they can then use it as an opportunity to change specific behaviors in an effort to become more effective at their job.
What Can 360-Degree Feedback Surveys Provide?
Surveys that incorporate 360-degree feedback can tell a company quite a bit about its employees. This type of feedback method usually provides information on an individual’s ability to set goals along with his/her ability to put a plan into place. It deals with an employee’s ability to listen to others. Plus, on a more subjective level, 360-degree feedback may provide information on an individual’s ability to work as part of a team as well as his/her effectiveness as a leader. Through this type of feedback, employees can gain insight into their competencies and behaviors.
What 360-Degree Feedback Surveys Don’t Provide?
A 360-degree feedback survey does not provide any type of measurement related to specific job skills or technical behaviors. It is not meant as a tool to measure employee performance objectives, nor is it supposed to be used in an effort to see whether an employee has been able to meet specific job requirements. Multi-source or 360-degree feedback is not designed to measure behaviors that are purely objective in nature. For example, this type of survey is not appropriate to use in determining whether an employee has met sales quotas or attendance goals.
When used effectively, 360-degree feedback can serve as a valuable source of information to improve employees’ job performance and positively impact organizational effectiveness.
– Becky Parkerson