For many organizations managing performance in what may now be a 100% virtual context is a new territory. It’s not a matter of how the supervisors, managers or leaders manage performance but also see this from the employee lens and what kind of support employees need to perform well. While shifting to this new normal we are discovering that the traditional in-person methods of performance management may no longer apply. Organizations should consider revisiting there performance management practices and re-calibrate on how they manage, motivate and reward performance in the new remote work context. While this pandemic may have worked as a catalyst to ensure that the performance management process focuses on driving business value; it makes all the more sense for the organizations to take a leap ahead and discover the new ways of driving the same.

 

How to Manage Employee Performance Remotely?

A recent survey conducted by one of the consulting companies spanned across 1000+ respondents stated that approx. One-Third of the employees were aware that the nature of the work has changed for them while less than One-Fifth of the employees had a clear idea of what success looks like in their role! Not only this that employees do not have a clear idea of what success looks like in their changing roles; additionally, they also feel the pressure to prove their value. Despite their work pressure and how the respondents are feeling only 13% of the employees stated that they receive some kind of support with respect to coaching or mentoring from their supervisors!

Read More on: Enhancing WFH Effectiveness

To accelerate growth and get results faster, CEO’s & companies need a simple, repeatable & scalable recipe (aka process) to drive execution on company objectives. The recipe that puts the discipline of thinking, planning and executing WHAT needs to be achieved and HOW it can be achieved in your teams, every quarter. Here are 3 best practices which the organizations today can leverage on –

  1. OKR based performance management framework
  2. Realtime & Continuous Feedback & Rewards
  3. Task-based operations

 

1.  OKRs (Objective & Key Results)

The objectives are “What” you want to accomplish, and the Key Results are “How” you will get those objectives done. The first thing the organizations today need to answer is the question “Why”. As a matter of fact, truly transformational teams combined their ambitions to their passion and their purpose to reach a compelling sense of “Why”. Once you have the shared purpose as the epicentre you need to now work on, create the periphery by defining the objectives you would want to achieve and define the “What”. As soon as you are able to co-relate “Why” and “What” you now need to work on the strategy to achieve your objectives to contribute towards the shared purpose.

The strategy is nothing but the “How” or the Key results which you need to focus upon to close the loop of OKR. It is a cultural shift at an organisational level – because you are asking every employee, every manager to move out of the post-industrial revolution mindset of 9-5 office hours and instead look at their concrete contribution. Implementing OKR could be one way to transform the overall performance management system.

 

2.  Realtime & Continuous Feedback & Recognition

In contrast to the traditional performance management approach, the contemporary approach focuses on “continuous dialogue”. With millennial or Gen Z or Gig workers dominating the job market, performance management approach has taken a paradigm shift wherein you can’t rely on yearly or mid-yearly performance cycle to provide feedback or discuss the development plan. Today’s workforce expects continuous feedback and is keen to explore different sigmoid curves as early as possible. Organization’s today need to focus on the agile way of performance management which surely needs to be linked with the rewards which are recurring in nature. Know more about creating high-performance teams. 

3.  Task-based operations

With pandemic hitting the globe and philosophy of work from anywhere and anytime picking pace objective performance management has become the key to attract and retain the talent. It is no longer about an 8 hour or 9-hour shift however It is about the task delivery. Organizations are expected to evaluate employee’s performance against the task allocated to them. The focus should shift from effort based on creating an output-based performance management approach and collaboration is touted as a new currency and lead indicator of business & performance. In this dynamic era, organizations need to ensure that they have a robust mechanism to track the achieved vs desired output and then basis the variance, performance should be evaluated. Zippi a tool by PeopleStrong helps organizations in driving contextual collaboration and thereby improving the team’s productivity by driving better collaboration and work management by driving task-based conversations.

The impact of COVID-19 has highlighted the flaws in our process and logic.  People have been rightly saying if COVID is the new Chief Digital Officer! One should not be surprised If you are getting cold feet today; it might be an indication that something needs to change.  Even before the COVID, the foundation of Performance Management was crumbling. If you see the current trends, Job descriptions are not being used; Jobs are becoming more complex and more work is being done in teams with more fluid roles & responsibilities. With these changes happening, conducting performance management in silos won’t be possible any longer.  With GIG workforce increasing and projects/ work getting comprised of People who aren’t employees with the company; it’s high time that the organizations start revisiting their Performance Management process/ strategy.

 

The Inspirit Way

Reframing one’s performance management system has been very crucial during these times. Dakshdeep has greatly highlighted the various digital tools that can help HR professionals to Manage performance during this new normal. At Inspirit we follow the OKR system, to track as well as align our measurable goals to the Common Objective of the organisation. With great synergy in the system, we would love to hear from the HRs as to how do they manage their employee’s performance in this digital era!

 

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AuthorDakshdeep works as an Associate Vice President with PeopleStrong – Asia’s most popular HR Tech brand. He is an HR Tech evangelist and been named in the prestigious HR 100 under 40 list.
Dakshdeep Singh

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