There is a trend in human resources moving away from the yearly performance review towards a weekly check-in and real-time feedback model.  But before you cheer at the demise of the yearly review let's take a look at how using a combination of the two tools can benefit your employees.

The main complaints leveled at the yearly review is that it focuses on the past, not the future and that often it just measures activity and not outcomes.  Improving employees’ performance should be an ongoing process.  I like the analogy of “you don’t coach a team after the game, but during one”.

By instituting a weekly check-in and offering employees real-time feedback you can focus on what is happening now. Check-ins don’t need to be lengthy – just enough time to go over any issues and offer solutions. Research shows that employees value this real-time feedback and knowing how their job performance is perceived.  More often than not employees receive this information well and will welcome the opportunity to improve.  

Using real-time feedback to establish a system where you measure outcomes as opposed to just activities is another way to improve employee performance. An example for your front desk would be: "answers all incoming calls 100% of the time and makes the patient feel important and valuable to the clinic”. The activity is not simply answering the phone but more important is that the front desk staff makes the patient feel valued which ultimately results in the patient returning and feeling good about referring the practice to friends and family. If the front desk employee is not being an effective patient ambassador, you can address this at a weekly check-in. Giving the employee an opportunity to improve can elevate their performance as well as minimizing the negative impact on your business. 

So you're saying to yourself this all sounds great but where does this leave the yearly review? Because you are using weekly check-ins and real-time feedback to address issues as they arise, the year-end review simply becomes a time to review successes, reward a pay increase (if warranted) and review long-term goals for the coming year.

Let us know what you think. Is this something you could institute at your practice?

Would you like to eliminate the yearly review all together?

Article by Christina Ryan, Executive Administrator 

DM Business Management Consulting Services, Inc.
Account Matters – Billing & Collection Services
4 Charlesview Road, Suite 4
Hopedale, MA 01747
P: 508-422-0231  F:  508-422-0234


Yearly Performance Reviews- Rethinking the Process