Performance Appraisal Literature Review

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Performance appraisal is a key human resource management function which is viewed as a subset of performance management. Rao (2005, p.336) opines that “performance appraisal is a method of evaluating the behavior of employees in the work spot, normally including both the quantitative and qualitative aspects of job performance”. Dessler (2008, p.336) views performance appraisal as any “procedure that entails setting work standards, assessing employees actual performance relative to those standards, and providing feedback to the employees with the aim of motivating him/her to eliminate performance deficiencies or to continue to perform above par”. The aims of appraisal according to Fajana (2002) are three folds: appraisal entails historical review of employees‟ performance; it is a means for distributing rewards as well as a means for determining training and development needs.

Manoharan, Muralidharan and Deshmukh (2009) posit that performance appraisal (PA) is an important management tool to assess employees‟ efficiency in the workplace, and may be defined as a structured formal interaction between a subordinate and supervisor that usually takes the form of a periodic review which could be annual or semiannual to evaluate work performance. Performance appraisal is intended to engage, align, and coalesce individual and group effort to continually improve overall organisational mission accomplishment (Grubb, 2007). It provides a basis for identifying and correcting disparities in performance. Systematically, performance appraisal reviews each employees work performance with a view to discovering the strengths and weaknesses of individuals and to identify opportunities for future skills improvement and development. Performance appraisal is a systematic way of evaluating a workers performance and his potential for development. This continuing performance and periodic evaluation helps in retraining, promotional and retaining policies.

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According to Fajana (2002), performance appraisal could be formal or informal. Formal appraisal is more orderly, systematic, planned and periodical, in which separate documents exist for the formal appraisal and this is usually recorded. Whereas, informal appraisal entails subordinates performance assessment in the normal course of work and day – to -- day relationship. Formal appraisal occurs when the contact between manager and employee is formalised, in which case a system is established to report supervisory impressions and observations of employee performance. This could be annually or semi-annually. Informal appraisal is conducted whenever a superior and subordinate feel it is ...

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