When it comes to choosing participants in a 360 degree feedback, you might want to enthusiastically ask everyone who even knows the employee in the slightest to participate. But hold on. Do you really need so many opinions?
Organizations seek to develop high-performing employees who are productive, engaged, and committed to their job. While continual feedback is critical for developing these top performers, many companies find that continuous feedback is not effective at all times. One of the major reasons for the same being, not all employees work directly with their immediate managers daily. This is where 360-degree review scores over other forms of the feedback systems and, hence, has gained acceptance among many companies.
Some companies remain skeptical of embracing the 360-degree review process. However, considering the pros and cons of 360-degree feedback, when done properly, the pros outweigh the cons, hands down.
This blog post offers insight into what is 360-degree feedback; the purpose of adopting a 360-degree feedback system, and how a 360-degree review can be helpful for an organization and its employees. Above all, its role in developing a work culture of an organization.
360-degree review process: What is it?
The 360-degree feedback, also known as a 360-degree review process, is an employee assessment framework that enables the organization to better understand employee performance and perceptions from both internal and external stakeholders using a variety of anonymous and private appraisal tools.
It serves as a mirror, revealing to employees their skills and talents, and weaknesses. The 360-degree review system not only assists employees in developing self-awareness but also in determining the extent to which their perceived inadequacies influence various stakeholders.
Why implement a 360-degree review process?
The 360 degree performance review mechanism enables you to hear from all stakeholders. In contrast to conventional performance assessment, wherein managers (direct/indirect) make the final verdict on an employee’s performance, the 360-degree review method enables you to receive inputs from colleagues, customers, suppliers, and a variety of other stakeholders.
This eliminates any prejudice a specific supervisor may have against an employee or vice versa. It focuses more on an employee’s performance and contribution to the team and to the business.
Does a 360-degree feedback help to change an employee’s outlook and performance?
Employees are the organization’s face and hence, their conduct and performance influence a company’s productivity and external stakeholders. The 360-degree review process can bring any form of mistakes or aberrations to notice and the concerned employee will have to work on it. Thus, the process enables personal development and aids in a company’s productivity.
How will a 360-degree review add value to your organization?
According to Forbes, over 85% of Fortune 500 organizations employ 360-degree feedback as a foundational aspect of their entire leadership development process. Thus, a 360-degree review can influence employees and management.
Let’s begin a quick check-in on the positive impact of a 360-degree performance review on organizations.
360-degree review gives you a comprehensive picture
If you simply look at an employee from a particular viewpoint, you will miss out on important details. As a talent manager, the side you see may differ greatly from the one shown to others. However, using a 360-degree review, you can gather those additional viewpoints and use them to create a more complete picture of an employee’s performance.
With a more comprehensive overview in hand, you may approach your performance assessment from multiple angles.
Perhaps an individual may be a higher-level manager but has difficulty communicating with his superiors. Alternatively, maybe, an employee may get peers’ admiration but they may be hesitant to speak about his improvements, upfront.
This is where a 360-degree performance review can help to gather information on various aspects of an employee’s engagement, performance, and behavior and communicate the same to the concerned person. Without 360-degree feedback, the employee may remain oblivious to these indispensable facts, from a variety of sources.
Establishes Communication Channels
Adopting the practice of a 360-degree performance review enables employees to provide feedback on one another’s work. This creates an atmosphere conducive to conversation and enables the resolution of issues. Effective communication increases a company’s likelihood of retaining the top employees.
Reinforces company values
Managers and higher management usually look for the best in every employee and encourage them to improve. You can share company values with all employees through a 360-degree review process and ask employees to get their performance aligned with the company values.
To translate your values into practical measures, you can use 360-degree review software like Engagedly to help employees to understand where they are going wrong.
Engagedly’s 360-degree employee evaluation platform allows sharing of valuable feedback to employees. The best part is that the feedback is a one-to-one process. This confidentiality feature, coupled with constructive feedback, makes employees to retrospect and changes themselves to align with company values.
Agile refers to anything that is always evolving, adaptable, relevant, and updated, which is how your approach should be toward the performance assessments.
360-degree feedback may assist you in achieving that agility by providing a more comprehensive image of your employee. A single-view performance assessment evaluates an employee from a single perspective (only from a manager’s perspective).
When you invite many opinions on an employee, you get a more thorough and fast assessment, which enables you to perform an agile employee analysis and conclude better for a review process.
When you promote business values, openness, and the pursuit of a whole picture, you are fostering an atmosphere where transparency and a continuous performance assessment approach are supported by everybody.
These elements contribute to the growth and development of the business, as well as increased employee productivity.
How 360-degree review benefits employees?
The following are some of the most significant advantages of a 360-degree feedback system for employees:
All voices get heard and valued, and it promotes openness
They bring diverse views of all stakeholders to light, not only for an individual employee but for the whole business. This promotes openness and frequent communication amongst all stakeholders.
Corrective plan and employee improvements
This assessment approach enables employees to focus on their “weaknesses,” fix their “mistakes,” and ensure that their future actions do not negatively impact other stakeholders. This also promotes Kaizen – continual and systematic improvement.
Kaizen is a technique of producing continuous improvement based on the notion that tiny, continual beneficial adjustments may yield substantial gains.
Customized training programs based on employees’ unique requirements
Training sessions may be planned and customized based on employee input. This increases employees’ motivation to attend more training. This step also enables organizations to save money by eliminating training sessions that do not offer value to employees and also by establishing a matrix-based work model.
Matrix management is a style of management in which employees are accountable to multiple managers rather than a single supervisor. It does away with the one-boss, vertical structure that most businesses use and replaces it with a system in which employees report to several superiors across departments and projects.
Avoid discrimination and avoid communication gaps
360-degree feedback systems enable multifaced communication and help to identify and correct mismatch in plan execution. Junior-level employees may also offer areas for development for management-level employees. Communication gaps caused by hierarchy are reduced.
It helps avoid misunderstanding and cultivating a positive team spirit in order to progress on an individual level, which may result in team growth. Ego disputes and workplace turmoil may be avoided by taking everyone’s opinion into account.
Fosters self-improvement and teamwork
A 360-degree feedback system enables continuous improvement and growth, not just as a person, but also as a team. Because everyone taking part in the process has the chance to share their ideas, it increases responsibility and motivates participants to assist one another in improving and becoming better at their work.
Contribution of employees to all stakeholders
It gives an opportunity for evaluating and discussing how an employee contributes significantly to their stakeholders. This demonstrates to the organization and its employees how their contributions make a difference and why they should continue to do what they are doing.
The framework enables employees to enhance their performance while simultaneously maintaining their existing outstanding quality productivity.
Remuneration based on feedback
A 360-degree feedback system helps foster a healthy discussion about individual contribution and, subsequently, increasing remuneration. When an employee gets excellent responses from all stakeholders, statistical evidence of the individual’s contribution is provided, and pay may be determined appropriately.
Contributes to increased employee retention
A 360-degree feedback system instills in employees a sense of importance in the business, as all stakeholders recognize and value all contributions. It may serve as an effective means of recognizing employees, assisting them in identifying areas for development, and providing an opportunity for personal growth and exploration. Subsequently, employee retention increases and workforce productivity grows as a company grows.
Employees must recognize that not all feedback can be rosy and favorable, as a 360-degree review entails constructive feedback that’s in the employee’s best interest. Since 360-degree performance review entails reviews of all junior and senior employees; peers, and customers, employees have to get in the groove of handling negative criticism and learning from their errors. They can take the help of the in-charge managers and HR personnel for the same.
Also read: 10 Benefits of 360 degree feedback
How 360-degree review helps to improve your work culture?
Satisfactory work culture is gradually becoming a must for employees in today’s working environment. Without a suitable workplace culture, a company will surely lose bright individuals. Diverse and robust workplace culture is critical for long-term corporate success.
Thus, how can your business establish and maintain a positive workplace culture while retaining its core workforce? The solution is to implement a robust 360-degree performance review system across your organization.
Implementing a 360-degree review system enhances your organization’s working culture. Continue reading to see how a 360-degree feedback system may help you enhance your workplace culture.
Enhance employees’ self-awareness
A 360-degree feedback system assists employees in developing self-awareness and identifying their strengths and flaws. Employees may also get an insight into unknown talents and limitations via this approach.
Increased employee self-awareness benefits both an employee and his company. This is because employees who can clearly perceive their own progress within the organization are more likely to work harder and remain loyal to their employer.
Fostering a strong sense of trust between the employee and the organization
Organizations that employ a 360-degree feedback system foster an open work environment. This culture fosters employee collaboration in aspects such as task execution methods; interpersonal interactions with subordinates; peers and superiors, and so on.
It enables employees to feel secure and comfortable enough to express their ideas about their jobs and colleagues. Since the standard feedback procedure is the same for all employees, nobody worries about being suppressed for their thoughts, which fosters a strong sense of trust between the employee and the organization. Thus, an open work environment benefits not just employees, but also the organization.
Helps to maintain a constant dialogue with employees.
A well-designed 360-degree feedback system contributes to the establishment of a culture of a continual dialogue between employees, colleagues, and supervisors. It lets all employees in your business to feel heard and their needs satisfied.
Collecting information on your employees in order to better understand and align them with your organization’s ethos and goals is one way to enhance your organization’s workplace culture.
When employees feel heard, they are more inclined to be happy with their workplace culture.
Eliminate bias and foster bonds of solidarity
One of the most serious risks to an organization’s working culture is prejudiced conduct against an employee by peers and superiors. Typically, traditional feedback procedures focused on collecting input from a single source.
However, when your organization adopts a 360-degree performance review system, you may collect input from a variety of sources, including peers, subordinates, supervisors, direct reports, and sometimes even customers, relieving individual bias against employees.
Employee satisfaction also rises when employees understand they will be evaluated fairly in a performance review system.
What is the easiest way to get started with 360-degree feedback?
Your first step should be to analyze and strengthen your current performance evaluation system. If you are still following the paper-based assessment process, consider shifting to a digital 360-degree review process.
Engagedly’s 360-degree performance review software is worth a try. It simplifies the 360-degree review process by allowing stakeholders at all levels of the organization to submit real-time feedback–including management, managers, fellow employees, and direct reports. It also allows to share a company’s mission, vision, values, and goals with the employees.
Engagedly’s 360-degree review platform may assist businesses in developing their managers in novel ways, as well as give a channel for employees to voice praise or worry about their frontline managers.
Want to know how Engagedly can help you manage your hybrid employees better? Request us for a demo.
360 degree feedback is a continuous process that assesses the performance, development, and potential of individuals in their current roles rather than in relation to a required competency or attributes for a future role. It is therefore a powerful tool in promoting respect for diversity and fairness at all levels in an organization.
In 360 degree feedback, all the stakeholders are a part of the process. It includes peers, direct reports, managers, vendors, or anyone with whom the employee has a working relationship..
360 Degree Feedback and Its Popularity
The rationale behind this approach is as follows: “If performance appraisal is about what you do well/not so well, then 360 degree feedback should be about how others view your work – what are the strengths and limitations of your working style, how other people feel about working with you.”
Globally, the system is in use by leading corporations to assess not just their own employees but also clients and suppliers.
Also Read: Tips For Conducting Effective One On Ones
Research shows that using a combination of methods such as peer assessment and manager assessment results in a better understanding of an individual’s performance than does either alone. The coming years will see a sharp increase in demand for qualified consultants offering services related to 360 degree feedback.
Ensuring Process Effectiveness and Significant Results
HR managers or external consultants, who are process experts, carry out the 360 degree feedback process. It usually takes one to two months, depending on the size of the organization. The process involves the employees who have worked with the individual being assessed over a period of at least one year.
It requires managers to complete written reports on their subordinates and others to complete questionnaires about the performance of those with whom they work directly.
Many organizations find that their 360 degree feedback program is effective only if used as part of a comprehensive performance management system. The 360 degree feedback process is useful in order to have a complete view of how team members perceive their manager. Monitoring and reviewing the process regularly helps supervisors identify areas of improvement.
A key issue here is ensuring confidentiality and maintaining anonymity throughout the process so that employees feel free to express their views honestly without fear of reprisal.
Tips for Implementing a Successful 360 Degree Feedback Program
Here are some tips for you to follow in establishing 360 degree feedback program the right way:
1. Use a trusted external consultant, or a colleague experienced in conducting 360 degree feedback.
2. Ensure that the process is properly designed and implemented by teamwork between the external consultant, an internal facilitator who will be responsible for driving the program, and key people within each area being assessed.
3. Involve line managers throughout the design and implementation of the program.
4. Train all those who will be a part of the process.
5. Clearly communicate the intention of using this process, so that everyone has a clear idea of how it will benefit them.
Also Read: How To Manage Global Teams Remotely
6. Ensure confidentiality during data collection and at all times thereafter.
7. Results can be used in a number of different ways: giving people confidential feedback about the way others see them; providing benchmarks against which employees can compare themselves with their peers; identifying developmental needs that may require further training or coaching from line managers or HR professionals; identifying areas of improvement, etc. In addition, the information from 360 degree feedback reports can give superiors a better understanding of their employees.
8. Ensure that there are no biases or discrimination against anyone because of their views.
9. Ensure that all managers receive training on how to provide feedback and coaching based on this information. It can help improve individual performance even further.
10. The design of an effective 360 degree feedback process is reliant upon two factors: soliciting honest opinions from others about you, and receiving the findings with an open mind. The best way to increase these likelihoods is by making yourself accountable for your own learning. Everyone has blind spots, but if your vision is clouded by personal bias, then you will miss many opportunities to improve your effectiveness as a leader.
Dealing With Resistance to Change Within the Company
Change is one of the most difficult things to make happen because it requires a willingness and ability on the part of managers and other key people within an organization; not only to support the implementation process, but also to take action as required. It’s far easier for them simply to do nothing and hope that negative issues will resolve themselves over time.
However, this approach runs contrary to everything we know about organizational development, which recognizes that change management is a critical step in creating sustainable performance improvement.
To reduce resistance to change:
1. Involve managers and other key people in the design and implementation of the 360 degree feedback process as quickly as possible, so they can become involved in setting up policies and procedures; making decisions about processes; training those who will receive, interpret and provide feedback; as well as delivering coaching
2. Document policies and procedures to make it clear on how 360 degree feedback results are collected, analyzed, used for coaching purposes
3. Provide line managers with a leadership action plan which outlines what actions they must take to show commitment to the overall organizational development program
4. Ensure that everyone understands how their individual performance affects overall company performance. As a result, they will be more motivated to initiate action plans for change.
5. Ensure that all managers receive feedback from their direct reports as well as others who have worked closely with them.
6. Promote the use of 360 degree feedback results at all levels within an organization to ensure fairness and reduce potential bias toward individuals.
7. Provide training on the process so employees recognize it is not part of any disciplinary procedure or witch hunt.
8. Be careful how you phrase messages about expectations for change. It’s easy to give messages that are misinterpreted by people anxious about change management or unable to cope with ambiguity or lack of information about what is happening next.
9. Communicate often with all staff about the company’s commitment to both the process and the need for change
10. Ensure that managers have access to help, advice, training or other resources they might need to take action on their 360-degree feedback reports
11. Implement a communications plan designed to ensure everyone understands how their work relates to the success of the organization
12. Hold management accountable for doing what is required under the leadership action plans. If necessary, tie continuing participation in 360degree feedback processes to individual performance reviews.
Benefits of Using 360 Degree Feedback as Part of an Organization’s Overall Performance Management Strategy
In addition to the many benefits that accrue from using 360-degree feedback as a tool for individual development, there are also significant advantages in terms of increasing organizational productivity and effectiveness. These include:
– Increased teamwork and cohesiveness
– Improved morale and engagement levels both at work and home
– Reduction in absenteeism rates
– More effective managers can build on the information contained within reports to further improve the performance of their direct reports
– Enhances efficient use of resources
– Improved decision-making as team members provide feedback on the overall effectiveness of managers and peers, and how they can be more effective
Using 360 degree feedback as part of an organization’s performance management strategy is an important step in building high-performing teams. It ensures that all team members understand the expectation and how their individual contribution helps to drive organizational success.
As such, it becomes critical for employers to invest time and money in providing the right environment and tools so employees feel comfortable using this process to achieve their potential.
Want to know how Engagedly can help you with 360 degree feedback? Request a demo from our experts!
There is no feedback program that is as comprehensive as the 360 degree feedback program. When it is done correctly, it is both successful and useful.
But when it is not done right, the end result is a complicated process. This article works as a checklist of sorts. If you are carrying out a 360 degree feedback program at your organization, then you should consider all the points given below quite seriously.
1. Unnecessary Participants Make It to the List
It is one of the common issues when it comes to 360 degree feedback or multirater feedback. The main purpose is to give an employee comprehensive feedback from others who closely interact with them. So, the ideal people would be immediate colleagues, managers, customers, etc. Unwanted participants in the feedback program would be senior executives who do not interact with the employee or work in other departments. They will have nothing of value to add to the program.
Also Read: 7 Reasons To Set Employee Goals
2. Not Given Enough Importance
A feedback program, no matter what, will fail when employees do not take it seriously. The reasons for not taking the program seriously could be many different things. Maybe employees do not believe in its efficacy. Or even more alarming, they do not know much about the program. But once you identify the reason, work on eliminating it. Once employees understand the importance, they will take the program seriously.
3.Lack Of Information
Many organizations directly implement the 360 degree feedback program without passing on much information to their employees. When employees are not well-informed, they would have less interest in it. Ignorance about the multirater program can impact the purpose of the program and cause it to fail spectacularly.
4. Employees do not know the purpose
On its own, the phrase ‘ 360 degree feedback program’ sounds imposing. And if employees do not know the reason behind it or how it is supposed to help, then they are going to be nervous or worried about it and not take part in it properly.
Also Read: 5 Things To Look For In An OKR Software
5. Employees link it to other processes
Employees often link the 360 degree feedback program or multirater to other processes. They often wrongly link it to a performance review or an appraisal. It is just a way of getting comprehensive feedback about the employee that is supposed to help them develop professionally and personally.
6. Incorrect Or Vague Questions
This is one of the last but most important steps of the program. Even if you did everything right but mess up this part, the entire program will fail. The questions asked should not be vague and be related to the employee. It should take into consideration the competencies of the employee which are under evaluation.
Want to know how Engagedly can help you with implementing 360 degree feedback? Then request for a live demo
Here’s a scenario.
You are going to buy a new phone. You look up reviews, ask for opinions of others who have the same phone and compare the specs of the device to that of other devices. By doing all of these things, you get to weigh the good and bad against each other. As a bonus, it also helps you make an informed decision.
So your organization went ahead and had a 360 degree feedback program. Let’s not go into the reasons why, but let us presume that they were good and meaningful.
360 degree feedback programs are good. They can be very beneficial to an organization and its employees. But one of the reasons why they fail is that nobody seems to follow up on a 360 degree feedback program.
While performance reviews are something most employees know about, it’s not the same for 360 degree reviews.
360 degree feedback programs can be useful as they provide rounded perspectives on employees. However, very often, the problem with 360 degree feedback programs is that they fail because of a few glaring oversights on part of the people who carry them out.