Increasingly, performance management is becoming one of the key indicators for organizational success. However, as an HR professional or a line manager, you must find the entire process of managing and improving performance difficult if you are just working manually, on spreadsheets.
Leveraging a performance management tool can help you seamlessly monitor and track performance, identify challenges in real time and address risks and concerns to ensure success.
This article will help you understand all about the what, why and how of a performance management tool. Get ready to explore how you can leverage a performance management software to unleash the potential of your people and how to make the right choice when selecting one.
Purpose of performance management tool
Before we jump onto how a performance management software is important for fast growing organizations, let’s quickly understand the rationale behind performance management.
In simple words, continuous performance management can empower you to gain insights into the productivity or performance of your team members. These insights can help you identify areas for improvement, achieve better goal alignment and much more. However, tracking and managing all employee performance aspects over spreadsheets can be a nightmare for you. This is where experimenting with a performance management software can help you considerably.
Using a performance management system can enable you to:
- Focus on consistent and continuous performance management. It can save you from the perils of ad hoc management, which doesn’t yield the complete picture.
- Gain a 360 degree perspective and feedback on employee performance. A performance management tool can help you understand your employee’s performance not only from their direct manager, but from everyone they have worked with. This can help you gauge their contribution to organizational success as a whole, not just limited to their KRAs and tasks assigned.
- Seamlessly track performance and gauge whether or not performance is showing an upward trajectory. It can help identify key trends in performance, which often have a direct relation with engagement, retention, satisfaction, etc.
- Ensure fair and transparent performance management and appraisals. A performance management system is free from any bias and will give you a transparent and authentic picture of how well the employee is matching his/her expectations.
Invariably, the right performance management tool can help you manage and develop your talent holistically. On the one hand, you will benefit from better performance, productivity levels and organizational success. On the other, the right people analytics can help you provide your employees with the right development opportunities and resources to encourage greater engagement and reduce voluntary turnover.
Attributes of an effective performance management software
Let us quickly look at the elements of a powerful performance management tool before moving onto the checklist to select the right one.
1. Goal and OKR setting
Performance is directly linked to goals and OKRs. These can help gauge whether or not the performance has been upto the mark or not. Therefore, an effective performance management tool will provide you with OKR setting and monitoring functionality as well to ensure proper alignment.
(To learn more about choosing the right OKR tool for your organization, click here)
2. Performance tracking
Continuous tracking is one of the key elements of performance management. Hence, a performance management software enables you to track critical areas of employee performance which are not only integral for organizational success, but also for professional development of your team members. An effective software will give you the flexibility to customize the parameters for tracking based on your needs.
3. Gauging pulse
An effective performance management tool not only helps track performance, but also helps capture employee pulse. It can enable you to understand how your team members feel about their performance, the culture of the organization at large and other aspects which impact performance.
4. Performance analytics
In addition to tracking, an effective performance management software will provide you with key insights based on the performance. It can help you understand areas that need work and commitment versus those that are in good stead.
5. Guided conversations
Finally, the right performance management tool will help you and all your managers to have meaningful 1:1 conversations with your employees. With guided templates based on AI driven recommendations, you will be able to send the right message across, and focus on your business at hand.
How to choose the best performance management software?
With a firm understanding of the key elements of an effective performance management software, let’s uncover the 8 points in your checklist to make the right choice.
1. What are your pain points?
Start by documenting the pain points that are bringing down your current performance management process.
Is it lack of time or bandwidth or the absence of resources or an ad hoc approach to measurement and feedback?
When you list down all the pain points, you will clearly have a comprehensive understanding on where the top areas are that you need interventions for. While a performance management tool can have a plethora of functionalities, this list can help you differentiate between the ones that are core and those which are peripheral for your organizational needs.
2. What do you require?
Based on the list created above, narrow down your requirements. There might be some pain points which can be addressed with a single feature while others might require multiple ones. For instance, if you find the current process cumbersome and time consuming, you would need a performance management system that can automate the same to ensure consistency and continuity, without eating into your bandwidth.
3. Which integrations do you need?
As a fast growing company, you might already be using productivity, team communication and other tools and introducing yet another stand alone software may reduce the level of participation and engagement. Therefore, you must select a performance management software which provides integration with your most preferred tools.
For instance, SuperBeings has attractive integrations with communication platforms like Slack, MS Teams, Gchat etc. as well as project management tools like Jira.
This will reduce the inertia of toggling between different platforms and increase the level of participation. Additionally, integrations with existing platforms and generating insights from them can help you get a holistic picture of the performance of your employees, more than their activity just on the performance management tool.
4. What are your scale up plans?
If you are in your scale up phase, you are likely to add more members to your team as you progress ahead. You need to gauge your requirements, not only for now, but for a few months or years down the line as well.
Therefore, a key parameter on your checklist should be whether or not the performance management software you choose will be able to support your scale up plans. This support is likely to come in different ways including knowledge sharing and resources for new team members, only incremental increase in costs with new additions, etc. Developed primarily for fast growing teams, SuperBeings can aid your scale up process comprehensively.
5. Do you need real time reports?
Next in line is you need to ask yourself whether or not you need access to real time reports. Your performance management tool should not only be able to gauge and track performance, but also provide you with reports in real time to monitor performance trends.
These reports can help you seamlessly evaluate employee performance, undertake fair appraisals and ensure that no key concern, issue or development is missed out. You should be able to track every part of the employee lifecycle and performance to address any risks in real time, before they turn into challenges.
6. Do you require heatmaps for performance improvement?
Some forward looking performance management tools will also provide you with heatmaps in addition to performance tracking and insights. These heatmaps, like those provided by SuperBeings, can help you gauge the pulse of your organization as a whole and create the future plan of action based on industry benchmarks. As a fast growing organization, the heatmaps can enable you to analyze performance levels comprehensively.
7. What is your budget?
If you have any financial constraints, the budget should be a key point on your checklist for a performance management tool. Based on your budget, you may want to relook at your core functionality requirements and add or delete from the list.
Whatever be your budget, look for a platform that offers you a trial period to understand the user friendliness, intuitive capabilities and the overall compatibility with your team members as well as existing tools.
If you are interested in checking out how SuperBeings can improve the performance management process in your company, book a free demo here.
8. Do you need AI driven recommendations?
If you want to stay up the curve and actually drive business value with your performance management software, choose one which provides you with AI driven recommendations. For instance, SuperBeings provides AI driven 1:1 recommendations and templates for your managers. These templates can help guide all conversations to facilitate better performance, constructive feedback and greater levels of engagement.
Undertake a comprehensive review of the top three performance management software that you narrow down based on the checklist mentioned above.
As a continuous performance management software, SuperBeings can provide you with end to end support. Right from setting goals and OKRs to tracking performance on them, monitoring progress, identifying risks and concerns, and finally leveraging heatmaps to address the same and drive business performance, SuperBeings is your answer for effective performance management. Sign up for a free demo today.