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Dear Workforce What Practices Are Used For Judging The Performance of IT Workers

What is best practice for performance metrics covering IT roles such as analyst-programmers? No one at my company really knows what they do, least of all their boss or their customer.
February 28, 2004
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Related Topics: Performance Appraisals, Dear Workforce
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Dear In the Dark:

IT roles are often very specific between companies or work teams. It is hard to find a standard definition of performance for these roles, so a real understanding of what performance looks like in your situation requires a bit of research. I think that yours is a textbook case of the need to conduct a proper job analysis.
The purpose of job analysis is to clearly define performance so that one can definitely identify how a specific job adds value and what is expected of incumbents. It is hard to select, train, compensate, and manage the performance of employees without fully understanding what they are expected to do and being able to tell when they are doing a good job.
A quick overview of the steps in the job analysis process should help you understand why it is so useful in situations like yours.
Review existing materials. Gather any information you can get your hands on to help you learn about this role. This may include reviewing job postings, job descriptions, training materials, and conducting Web research.
Interview incumbents and supervisors (in this case you may even include a few customers) and observe people doing the job. This will give you a very good feel for what incumbents do every day. You will learn what is expected of them, who they interact with, and what their biggest challenges are.
Create a list of all the things required for performance. These things are best summarized in terms of key competencies, knowledge, skills, abilities, key behaviors, and any objective performance criteria. Next, turn this list into a survey and get incumbents and their supervisors to rate these various things in order of importance.
Use the survey data and the info you gathered to create a picture of what performance should look like for this job. Take all the information you have collected and use it as raw material for all specific initiatives related to the position.
If you don't have the resources to do all of these steps, try to pretend you are a detective and seek out information about what performance means to supervisors, incumbents, and customers. Try to guide these discussions using a set of clear-cut behaviors, knowledge, skills, abilities, and competencies.
The bottom line here is that you may never know the answer to your question until you ask the people who actually perform the job.
SOURCE: Charles A. Handler Ph.D., PHR, Rocket-Hire, New Orleans, Louisiana, March 24, 2003.
LEARN MORE: ReadThe Six Benchmarking Steps You Need.
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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 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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