Goldman Sachs Revamps Performance Review Process

American flag in front of Goldman Sachs building

This seems to be year of doing away with performance reviews. In addition to Microsoft, GE and Adobe (among others), Goldman Sachs has also joined the band wagon and done away with the ratings aspect of the performance review. They are also getting rid of the once a year aspect of the performance review in favour of something that is more timely and continuous.

Every HR manager knows that performance reviews can be useful at determining who works well and who does not. Theoretically speaking that is. But often, the problem with performance reviews is that it is the execution which falters. Many organizations begin the review process with lofty objectives but the end goal is not always as satisfactory.

Earlier on in the article, I mentioned that Goldman Sachs got rid of their 9-point rating system. Ratings are a much reviled aspect of performance reviews, in short because when used on their own, they reduce an employee to just a number, regardless of circumstance or skill. They do far more damage than badly conducted performance reviews. Yet, for the longest time, many companies utilized ratings-based performance reviews. They eschewed the more human aspect of performance reviews, which is knowing that there is a person with feelings who is being ranked.

For the past few years, there’s been growing vocal dissent about the performance review process. Now it is evident that some of that dissent, that growing dissatisfaction is finally reaching the ears of organizations.

So is this a good thing or a bad thing? We are inclined to think it’s a good thing. In fact, it is a excellent thing. For the longest time, performance reviews have hung like specters over organizations. Most performance reviews tend to be arbitrary and inadequate. The fact that many organizations seem to be giving up on this model of performance reviews can only mean one thing – that the performance review process is changing for the better. And it’s about time it did.


Engagedly’s Performance Management module aims at providing a holistic performance review process. To know more about how Engagedly can help your organization, request a demo today!

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