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How to Monitor Employee Performance? 9 Tips for Success

Performance Management
August 2, 2022
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The lifeblood of any business is its employees. From an organizational standpoint, knowing how to monitor employee performance plays a big role in being able to help an employee to achieve their highest potential. 

In this article, we will discuss performance measures in business, KPI metrics, and how employees’ mental wellbeing is a major decisive factor of their overall performance. 

What is Employee Performance?   

Employee performance is just what it sounds like – it is a measure of how employees fulfill their responsibilities and duties, as well as how they behave and show up in the workplace (a.k.a how they perform). 

The key performance measures in business tend to be the quality, efficiency, and quantity of work produced. However, in modern times, there’s a lot more of a focus on what’s happening behind-the-scenes for employees, which means that there is a renewed focus on how an employee is doing and feeling because it is the foundation for how they are able to perform. 

Instead of focusing on quantifying output, many organizations are turning to prioritising their employees’ wellbeing because it is what tends to drive successful, engaged, and motivated employee performance.

How is Employee Performance Measured?       

Every organization tackles the idea of employee performance in their own right. However, there are three key performance indicators for managers that tend to be in the spotlight for how to monitor employee performance. 

These include:

1. Work Quality 

Deducing the quality of work means looking at if the work meets expectations. Did the employee meet their objectives? Did they do their absolute best on the task at hand? 

2. Trust 

As a manager or leader, one of the best qualities you can have in your relationship with employees is trust. Trust is what allows for autonomy and the ability to grant your employees the freedom to work in their own way because you are assured that the quality of work will not be sacrificed. Are employees consistent in delivering results? Can you let them work without having to micromanage? 

3. Efficiency 

Do employees meet deadlines or is time wasted? Are tasks completed in a timely manner without sacrificing quality or does the output feel rushed and subpar? Keep in mind that if you are measuring employee performance based on output, it’s equally important to measure them based on their capabilities.

Why Monitor Employee Performance?   

Monitoring employee performance enables organizations to not only manage their business’ operations, but it also provides a way to better understand employee engagement or reasons why it could be lacking. 

Here are some of the main benefits that come along with measuring employee performance:

1. Track Efficiency 

HR personnel and managers must deduce whether or not employees are meeting, exceeding or falling short of benchmarks because it affects the organisation’s ability to accomplish its goals. 

2. Develop Training Programs 

By knowing where an employee currently stands in terms of their abilities and skills, HR personnel are able to create training and development programs that can help employees strengthen their skills and fill any gaps. 

3. Implement Rewards and Recognition Schemes 

Rewards and recognition schemes are a great way to keep your employees motivated and recognize them for their hard work and effort. Sometimes, these schemes can be based on productivity, which makes it clear as to why employee productivity must be measured.

4. Motivate Employees

While some employees are intrinsically motivated, others may become more motivated as they are recognized for their productivity. Performance management can make a big difference in pushing employees to want to continuously improve. 

5. Handle Retention 

Employees who perform well consistently are less likely to be let go of. When HR teams have to make tough cuts, it may come down to evaluating performances to figure out who won’t make the cut. 

6. Employee Wellbeing 

Gauging employee productivity goes hand-in-hand with caring about their mental wellbeing. It’s cyclical in fact - the more mentally fit and resilient an employee is, the more likely they’ll be to meet their goals and objectives. 

At the same time, when employees are underperforming, it may be that there’s something more going on in their personal or professional lives and learning about their mental wellbeing can point to the cause to be able to remedy it. 

Organizations can leverage employee wellbeing platforms to support their employees in becoming the best version of themselves and allow them to take steps to strengthen their own mental fitness. In turn, boosting resilience and optimism, which in turn can boost productivity!

How to Monitor Employee Productivity?       

Knowing the benefits of monitoring employee productivity brings us back to the big question of how to monitor employee performance. 

Check out these methods: 

1. Watch Employees Work

If you’re on the ground with an employee, take a few moments to see how they work. It could be overseeing how they complete tasks behind the computer or how they interact with a customer. When it comes down to how to manage remote teams,  this is still possible but will likely involve technology like video calls or screen shares, for example. 

2. Ask for an Account of Work Completed

During one-on-one management conversations, ask an employee to recount what they did and how they did it when fulfilling their responsibilities. By listening carefully, you can deduce how they are performing and where there could be room for improvement. It also provides employees with a sense of accountability.

3. Encourage Employees to Use Self-Monitoring Tools

There are plenty of software tools that provide employees with the ability to monitor themselves and time themselves as they complete tasks. Encourage employees to make use of these tools so that they can see how they are improving. They can also use more “old school” self-monitoring tools like checklists or to-do lists. 

4. Review Work in Progress Regularly

Employees often work together to get something done. This means that if they are not solely responsible for an end product, judging their work off of the end product could be unfair. Instead, perform regular check-ins so you can see how they are being productive along the way. 

5. Ask Around

You can also gain feedback from the people who interact with employees, including customers, colleagues, vendors, and managers. Rather than asking them to provide evaluations, ask them to describe what it is like working with said employee. 

6. Set Clear, Measurable, Actionable Goals

To make it fair on employees, be sure to communicate how and what you will be evaluating their performance against. Only by having an understanding of clear and measurable goals can they be expected to meet the expectations.

7. Use Performance Tracker

The best employee monitoring software includes an employee performance tracker, which collects data for analysis. You get to decide what data to collect and how to measure their performance, but the performance tracker will do the rest. For example, it could track how much time an employee spent completing a task or their internet activity. 

8. 1-on-1 Meetings & Reports

Managers hold a lot of power when it comes to employee productivity as they can make or break an employee’s spirit by how they conduct business. By building a strong relationship with employees and conducting 1-on-1 meetings, managers can regularly deduce the progress or projects and help employees overcome any roadblocks or hurdles they may be facing. 

9. Involve Employees

Employees are responsible for their performance, so it only makes sense to involve them in the evaluation of it. This creates an approachable and safe environment for employees to feel supported in. Communicate with employees to hear how they think they are doing, and ask them what they may need to do better.

Manager working alongside employee on laptop
By CoWomen from Unsplash

How to Improve Employee Performance?   

On the path of learning how to monitor employee performance, you’ll then reach a more important question: how can you improve employee performance? There’s no doubt that any organisation would gladly welcome employees who perform better and with more excitement. 

So, consider trying these approaches:

1. Priorities Employee Wellbeing

An employee’s mental wellbeing impacts their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. By supporting employees to become their best selves, you are inadvertently going to boost their performance, too. 

With an employee wellbeing platform, employees can track their mood over time, and understand what is impacting it. It also provides them with relevant tools and resources to better support their mental wellbeing and resilience. 

Additionally, by building stronger relationships with your employees, employees feel more loyal and committed to do better, work harder, and remain engaged on the job.

2. Offer Feedback 

With regular feedback, employees can stay on track and fulfill their own desires to improve. By providing feedback consistently, it removes the fear of negative feedback that can end up being demoralising for employees and counterproductive for organisations. 

Consistency makes it easy for employees to know where they stand, get support for how to bridge gaps, and feel grateful for the attention they receive. 

3. Set Realistic Goals 

Employees must know their goals and understand what they need to do to accomplish them. This way, employees gain control over monitoring their own performance and can know what to expect in terms of feedback from their managers. Setting goals that are realistic means that they are measurable and time constrained.

4. Be Flexible 

By creating a comfortable and positive work environment and culture, employees will feel more satisfied and willing to reach their potential. One way to promote a welcoming corporate culture is to offer flexibility. 

Along with benefits, you can ask employees what type of environment they wish to work in (i.e. remote, hybrid, flextime), and also when they are most productive in terms of time of day. By granting them autonomy, they can take more control over their performance and abilities.

Reach New Performance Heights 

Keeping in mind these methods for how to monitor employee performance, you can prioritize your employees in a renewed way. With a focus on employee mental wellbeing and leveraging capabilities to promote employees to do their best and be their best, everyone ends up reaping the benefits, from the organization to employees to customers.

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