Designing Performance Appraisal Systems

April 6, 1989

Allan M. Mohrman, Susan M. Resnick-West and Edward E. Lawler III. (Jossey-Bass, 1989)

Designing performance appraisal systems is no longer the back room task for experts that it used to be. For appraisal systems to be central to the management of the business and useful to employees, it is critical that the entire organization be involved in their design.

This book is a comprehensive guide to planning, designing, and implementing appraisal systems that are tailored to meet an organization’s real needs. It shows human resource professionals and managers how to define performance, who should measure it, who should give and receive feedback and when it should be given, and how often appraisals should be made.

Using their many combined years of experience and research in the fields of organizational behavior, management, and development, the authors examine and evaluate the common approaches to appraisals – those oriented to the performer, the behavior, the result, or the situation – and show how they can be integrated into an effective total appraisal system. They offer specific advice on implementing and evaluating a new appraisal system – including how to train appraisers to use the system – and specify how to involve everyone in the process to improve the entire organization. The authors discuss how to use appraisals to determine pay, provide guidelines on using them as part of career management, work through the special problems of applying performance appraisals to professionals, and analyze the legal considerations.

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