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Performance Management Systems - do they optimise performance?
5 November 2015


Performance management (PM) includes activities which ensure that goals are consistently being met in an effective and efficient manner. Performance management can focus on the performance of an organisation, a department, employee, or even the processes to build a product or services.

PM is also known as a process by which organisations align their resources, systems and employees to strategic objectives and priorities.

A formal definition of performance management, according to Daniels is ‘a scientifically based, data oriented management system’. It consists of three main elements: measurement, feedback and positive reinforcement.

Performance management often suffers from some or all of the following:

  • a lack of analysis to define the real organisation issues
  • PM should be an organisational tool – owned and driven by the CEO; (it is not owned by HR – and still less by a sub-function within HR)
  • the lack of apparent link between strategic initiatives to improve corporate performance – and the employee centric system of PM often ‘owned’ by the HR Dept
  • there should be an holistic approach to PM, that talks ONE language of “performance” linked to business strategy – and avoids “cluster of one” initiatives
  • too much reliance on tired HR solutions such as ‘performance appraisal’ and merit pay which are rarely the answer
  • inability of managers to implement the ‘solutions’
  • too much work on individuals and not enough on teams and organisation culture
  • no evaluation of initiatives.

The meeting will discuss members’ experiences in:

  • An organisation’s hierarchy for improving performance.Where does HR’s activity feature in the list?
  • What are the opportunities for performance improvement?Where does Performance Management feature?
  • What appears to be working well and where do we need to make most improvement?
  • Experience of initiatives which have materially influenced individual or organisational performance.

Research Paper
A position paper will be produced and circulated before the meeting. Alastair would be pleased to incorporate any views on the topic which may enhance the discussion.


Please let us know what you thought about the meeting, so we can continue to improve!

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