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Officevibe takes on performance management with new agile features

Written by: Officevibe & Sofia Acosta
Published on: September 19, 2023 |  Reading time: 8m

At Officevibe, we’ve been working to make people management more human and collaborative for nearly a decade. Our engagement solution has features that spark healthy conversation and enable employees to do their best work. Now, we’re tackling performance with a brand-new set of integrated tools to drive your agile performance practice using the same continuous, team-centric approach you’ve come to know and love from Officevibe.  

That’s why we’re so thrilled to announce that new performance management features are now available in Officevibe! We know managing performance is a critical business process for you and we’re sure these features will streamline your path to success. We can’t wait to see what you’ll achieve when you bring engagement and performance together in the Officevibe experience!  

But before we show you what we’ve been working on, we wanted to tell you a little more about how we got here and why we built our new features the way we did.  

The future of performance management: Rethinking the annual review model 

Working in HR is no small feat — we know it can sometimes feel like you’re stuck between a rock and a hard place. We hear you. You’re under immense pressure to deliver results from your processes and tools. You’re often asked to show the C-suite how people management practices drive organizational performance, while also keeping employees engaged. And you’re weathering new ways of working and evolving employee expectations.   

We commend you for your constant effort to maintain an engaged workforce that contributes to business success. Seriously, it’s a tough balancing act. But it’s time to address the elephant in the room: in today’s fast-paced world, traditional HR processes aren’t cutting it (and they’re definitely not helping you).   

One of the areas that needs special attention is performance management. The annual review model is broken, and it’s time to fix it. Why? This model forces managers to evaluate a year’s worth of work anchored in a single point in time with limited performance data. 

It makes these conversations difficult for managers, and it doesn’t bring value to the employee. Employees rarely receive performance feedback in real-time with this approach, which leads to misalignment across the board. And when employees don’t understand expectations on performance due to lack of feedback, they’re left demotivated and with the perception that the process as a whole is unfair.   

In short, it’s harder for you to deliver results from your People Ops practices. 

So, what’s the answer? Employees need frequent feedback and coaching to succeed, and managers need a playbook to help them deliver just that.  

An agile take on performance management  

That’s where agile performance management comes in. Let’s start by quickly defining what it means. 

Agile performance management is an approach to managing and evaluating employee performance that is characterized by its flexibility, adaptability, and focus on continuous improvement. It aims to create a more responsive and employee-centric approach to managing performance, one that aligns with the dynamic nature of today’s workplaces. 

By focusing on frequent and open communication, you can create a culture of continuous improvement that benefits both performance and engagement. Being nimble about performance management gives employees the feedback they need to succeed and feel confident at work, while also managing expectations and consistently aligning everyone on shared objectives. 

Understanding Officevibe’s performance management approach 

At Officevibe, we’ve been working to make people management more human and collaborative for nearly a decade. Our engagement platform has features that spark healthy conversation and enable employees to do their best work. Now, we’re tackling performance with tools to drive agile performance management that are integrated with our existing OKR goal-setting and one-on-one meeting features. 

Our approach is simple: performance management needs to be done in a proactive, frequent, and empathetic way. With continuous performance cycles, managers can provide feedback and coaching in real-time, helping employees grow and successfully contribute to business objectives. Plus, they’ll be able to keep track of it all with a rich record of performance data collected over the entire year.  

A tool rooted in agile performance management best practices

Before we show you tidbits of our new tool (don’t worry, we’re almost there!), we wanted to share some best practices that helped guide us in the conception of this new feature. If you’re not quite ready to implement an agile performance management tool, you can start by following these guiding principles:  

1. Cadence & types of meetings

Make performance conversations regular: Agile performance management thrives on regular communication, so it’s essential to make conversations about performance a regular occurrence. Implementing a well-structured performance management cycle is key to success. 

Bridge the gap with lighter-weight check-ins: While formal reviews (quarterly or bi-annually) are important, they should not be the only touchpoints for performance discussions. Incorporate lighter-weight check-ins on a monthly basis to keep performance on everyone’s radar. 

Include complementary meetings: Beyond the core performance discussions, consider adding complementary meetings such as goal setting, career development, or addressing poor performance. These meetings ensure a holistic approach to employee development. 

2. Preparation

Gather feedback: Before any performance discussion, gather feedback from team members regarding the employee’s performance. Include both positive and constructive feedback. Also, review your own feedback as a manager. 

Evaluate goal progress: Assess the progress made toward the employee’s goals. Identify areas where they excel and where there are gaps in performance. 

Review previous notes: Take the time to review notes from previous 1-on-1 meetings or performance checkpoints. This ensures that you build upon previous discussions and commitments. 

3. Approach

Lead with empathy: Begin the performance conversation with empathy and a genuine desire to help your team member grow, learn, and improve. Show that you care about their professional development. 

Provide constructive feedback: Offer constructive feedback and guidance in a timely and actionable manner. Coaching is a critical component of agile performance management. 

Recognize and reward: Celebrate achievements and milestones and share positive peer feedback. Recognizing and rewarding good performance encourages motivation and engagement. 

Encourage openness: Foster an environment where employees feel comfortable sharing their ideas, concerns, and feedback. Encourage open communication and make it clear that their input is valued. 

Respect personal boundaries: If an employee is facing personal challenges, respect their boundaries. Don’t insist on details but do offer support if they choose to share. Depending on the context, assure them that the conversation stays confidential. 

Listen actively: Pay attention not only to what is being said but also to non-verbal cues. Active listening helps you understand your team member’s perspective better. 

4. Follow-up

Send meeting recaps: After the performance discussion, send a recap of takeaways and next steps to the employee. Clear communication ensures everyone is on the same page regarding expectations.

Integrate performance in check-ins: In your lightweight check-ins, include talking points about performance and review progress on action items. This keeps performance at the forefront of ongoing discussions.

Continue gathering feedback: Keep gathering and sharing feedback and recognition from other employees. Peer feedback adds depth to performance assessments.

Track progress: If an employee’s performance continues to fall short despite multiple conversations, it may be time to involve HR for further guidance and potential next steps.

Agile performance management is a continuous and collaborative process that empowers employees to grow and contribute their best to the organization. By following these best practices, you can create an environment where performance discussions are a source of motivation, improvement, and growth for everyone involved.

Introducing Officevibe’s performance management features 

Officevibe’s brand-new performance management features, designed by our team of HR and employee experience experts, help you build agility into your practice. Together, these tools act like a playbook that enables a continuous process to drive performance day in, day out. 

Data-driven performance reviews 

Our data-driven performance reviews support unbiased and fair reviews by automatically pulling performance data and insights into the review process. They let you access a rich record of performance generated by managers and employees using Officevibe in their day-to-day. 

Visual of the context panel under the Officevibe Performance management tool

Rate performance your way 

The tool makes it easier than ever to create reviews with ratings and customizable scales. This way, you can evaluate your team based on your company’s preferred rankings. Once the review period is done, you can easily export performance data at the end of your review period.

Easy to use performance management tool.

Continuous performance cycles  

With continuous performance cycles you can now sync your performance cycles with the flow of your business. This means scheduling events to support continuous alignment and feedback with our easy-to-use cycle builder and capturing all of it come review time.

Officevibe performance management interface

Cycle reporting 

It wouldn’t be an Officevibe feature without solid reporting. Cycle reporting gives you a real-time view of reviews and checkpoints completed. Plus, we’ll take care of the nudges and reminders to reduce admin time and increase participation.

Annual performance management tool from Officevibe

Driving team performance continuously with Officevibe 

If you’re struggling with performance management, it’s time to reshape your mindset around performance management. Remember, a steady and supportive approach is the way to increase performance for good. And we’re committed to helping you drive results: you’ll love our new and improved take on performance management.  

Ready to dive in with two feet? Chat with an Officevibe expert to see our new performance management tool for yourself.