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Dear Workforce How Do I Train Supervisors To Write Evaluations?

We have used canned performance appraisal software for severalyears, mostly because supervisors were reluctant/unable to write narrative reviews of employees. New management requests that we move to a narrative appraisal (with no numbers or canned phrases). How do I train supervisors with little or no writing skills to do this type of evaluation? Are there any "hybrid" programs that might combine canned with original response?
June 25, 2003
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Related Topics: Performance Appraisals, Dear Workforce
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Dear Needing Write Answers:

Most appraisal software will allow various levels of narrative comment.However, the main advantage of these systems is the ability to provide aquicker, easier way for managers to do appraisals. Hence the canned phrases.
Depending on the size of your management staff, I would suggest bringing in abusiness-writing expert, either from a consulting firm or from an area collegeor university to conduct a one-day seminar on how to write concise and accuratecomments on performance appraisals.
You may also want to have a reputable HR attorney in your area provide anoverview of the legalities of performance appraisals, such as safe phrases touse that get the point across while holding legal muster.
Another approach, which depends on the kind of work the employee does, is torequire more frequent, but shorter, evaluations throughout the year. These canbe done on a quarterly basis, or could be tied to the end of a project ordeliverable. People often respond to shorter assignments more often rather thanone big project occasionally.
Although it sounds like you want to stay away from canned phrases, a good book to use as a resource is"Effective Phrases for PerformanceAppraisals: A Guide to Successful Evaluation," by James E. Neal. This book can at give least a starting resource for managers to develop their narrative evaluations.
SOURCE: Bill Dickmeyer, CEBS, Madison Human ResourcesConsulting, LLC,Madison, Wisconsin
LEARN MORE: Read Six Steps to Successful PerformanceAppraisals.
The information contained in this article is intended to provide usefulinformation on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice ora legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.
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 The information contained in this article is intended to provide useful information on the topic covered, but should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion. Also remember that state laws may differ from the federal law.

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