A performance appraisal is a standard feature at most workplaces. It’s conducted at regular intervals to evaluate employee performance and assign goals for the next year. It also helps to develop a clear understanding of where your employees are succeeding and what areas need improvement in order for them to reach their full potential.

There are many ways of conducting a performance appraisal. The factors that affect the chosen method include the organization’s size, management style and preference. Here, we’ll discuss traditional methods of performance appraisal and how they can help employees achieve their goals.

With traditional appraisal methods, organizations usually conduct them at least once a year. But others might opt for a twice-yearly schedule. This helps them stay connected to their employees’ progress.

  1. What Are Traditional Methods Of Performance Appraisal?

  2. Traditional Vs. Modern

What Are Traditional Methods Of Performance Appraisal?

Traditional techniques of performance appraisals give employees feedback on how they’re doing and also give them a chance to voice any concerns. The performance appraisal helps the employer and employee understand each other. The primary goal of the performance appraisal is to maintain a good work environment by evaluating each employee’s work, providing feedback and guiding them to achieve their goals. The traditional method of a performance appraisal includes:

  1. Interviewing Employees



A one-on-one interview with employees is a great way to discuss any concerns the employee may have. By doing this, you can find out what they think of their own performance and how they’re performing compared to their own expectations. This is one of the most popular traditional methods of performance appraisal.

  1. Comparative Methods



Employee performance can be compared to that of their peers in one of two ways: the ranking method or a paired comparison. In the ranking method, the performance of each team member is assigned a value compared to their peers. In the paired ranking, each employee is compared against a selection of others.

  1. Rating System



Employees can also be rated on a list of skills that are needed for their position or business goals. This will provide a clear understanding of what skills each worker has and where improvements can be made. It also seeks employee input on how they’re performing and gives them a chance to voice concerns. Employees will answer questions related to their goals—how close they are to reaching them. Organizations use this method mainly at the beginning when an employee takes on a new position or when there are changes in productivity or employee performance.

  1. Time Sampling

A time sampling is a traditional method of appraisal in which an employee’s productivity is measured over a specified period. This method is best for high-volume operations where quality control and accurate production times are needed. For example, if you run a manufacturing plant that makes multiple products, you can use this method for each product line in order to evaluate work quality.

  1. Essay Appraisal



The essay appraisal method is used to rate an employee’s performance at different levels. The manager writes an essay describing the employee’s performance such as organization, analysis, detail, application, judgment and completion. This method, one of several traditional techniques of performance appraisals, is good when you don’t have a lot of relevant data available for comparison as it’s more qualitative.

The traditional method of a performance appraisal includes these and some other techniques, often used alone or with one another.

Traditional Vs. Modern

Traditional methods of performance appraisal were built on standard parameters such as production, attendance and other related variables. However, with changing times, the notion of performance appraisals has been modernized and adapted to suit the needs of organizations. Nowadays, performance appraisals have transformed into a tool that offers valuable data about the strengths and improvement areas of each employee.

Does this mean traditional methods of performance appraisals in HRM are ineffective in the modern workplace? Measuring performance on multiple dimensions helps managers define what employees can achieve and identify areas of potential growth. So, an understanding of these traditional methods is still useful to this day. Many are still in use, either exclusively or along with more modern appraisal methods that are less one-sided and more collaborative.

Master the traditional method of appraisal alongside the modern with Harappa’s First Time Managers Program! It’ll teach managers new to the field how to navigate these complex workplace needs and more. Setting goals and monitoring them, leadership, persuasion and growing trust are just some of the skills packed into the program that’s perfect for early-career employees getting set to take on more advanced managerial roles. Help a new generation of managers achieve their best today with Harappa!

Explore Harappa Diaries to learn more about topics such as Performance Appraisal, the Techniques Of Performance Appraisals, Ways To Coach Employees at Work and Ways To Improve Employee Experience at work that will help organizations tap into employee potential.

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