Human resource managers of successful business organizations incorporate proven methods and techniques in training and appraising employees as motivational performance enhancement tools to reap the best benefits. According to Techniques of Performance Appraisal (2007), various methods and techniques, old and new, exist in pursuing and reaching the desired goals. This is evident with the European pharmaceuticals-distribution group Alliance Unichem.
In its distribution channels, Unichem has used a 360 Degree Feedback to establish strong relationship with its employees. This is manifested in employee development and the organization’s excellent change management initiatives incorporated by the organization’s Human Resource Managers (HRM) in driving change and employee development. According to Techniques of Performance Appraisal (2007), methods are identified as specific tools that perform specific tasks while techniques are ways of working with methods. Techniques are said to comprise a variety of methods.
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The most important asset a business organization can posses is its human resources. These resources must develop and grow. Therefore training and development needs must be identified and appropriate training techniques and methods used to reach that goal. Old and modern methods are two approaches to methods and techniques for employee training and development. The article, 11 Performance Appraisal Methods (2005) identifies one of the old methods as essay appraisal. This is a non-quantitative approach for managers to straight ranking where employees are ranked in order of performance i.e.
best to worst. Other techniques and methods include, Paired comparison, Critical Incident method, Field Review, Checklist method, Graphic Ratings scale where a manager reports on observed employee performance, and Forced distribution methods (11 Performance Appraisal Methods, 2005) Modern methods include Management by objectives (MBO), 360 Degree Appraisal, Assessment centers, behaviorally Anchored Rating Scales, and Human Resource Accounting (11 Performance Appraisal Methods, 2005).
Unichem’s procedure and 360 Degree Appraisal
Business executives who talk about successful organizational HRM initiatives, development, growth and sustainability are actually talking about excellent employee development methods and techniques in achieving the above objectives. This is evident with Unichem. This pharmaceutical company has integrated components of Human Resource Appraisal in its 360 Degree Appraisal methods in carrying out the change that has transformed it to its current position. Appraisal in this case implies that the Unichem’s HRM established performance appraisal standards in employee resourcefulness in pursuing and meeting the company’s goals and objectives. The performance standards and expectations are communicated to the employees, actual performance of the employees are measured and compared against the set standards, results are discussed by providing feedback, and decisions are made and corrective action is taken. This performance appraisal techniques were incorporated in its 360 Degree Appraisal techniques in pursuing employee satisfaction, development, and growth, factors which had real potential impact on the organization’s growth and employee motivation (Techniques of Performance Appraisal, 2007).
This modern approach to appraisal incorporated in Unichem focuses on the employee. One unique Human resource managers met strategy was Unichem’s rating of the organization’s employees. Such rating was accomplished by establishing performance standards that employee’s performance could be measured against. Feedback was recognized and integrated at all levels of the organization involving managers, subordinates, employees at the same level of work in the organization in addition to senior managers and suppliers. The human resource department of Unichem recognized the benefits of integrating the 360 Degree Appraisal. According to Performance Appraisal Skills (2009) the benefits reaped by the business concern included improved employee performance, organizational change, increase profits, customer loyalty and improved profits. To integrate the 360 Degree Appraisal, human resource managers noted that the Appraisal technique could help them in conducting regular performance discussions.
This method helped them identify weaknesses inherent in their employees, and pin point training needs within for their employees. Employee weaknesses could be identified and the best approach to employee training determined. In addition, employee needs and were addressed through this method thus enhancing their working conditions. The case also illustrates the fact that management had conducted prior research and had effectively implemented the 360 Degree Appraisal method by effectively planning on its integration and implementation into the system, then conducted a thorough review of the method before implementing it. According to Performance Appraisal Skills (2009), excellence was marked in the human resource management by their ability to pilot study the system to evaluate its effectiveness before fully adapting and integrating it into the organization. This saved the organization from the risk of incurring huge costs in reverting the whole organization to the old appraisal systems used should the 360 Degree Appraisal technique fail.
Nevertheless, it was a resounding success. Once the appraisal method was implemented, it is evident that feedback played a key role in determining the effectiveness of employee appraisal and the changes that needed to be introduced to enhance employee productivity. The 360 Degree Appraisal is characterized by feedback. Feedback is an essential component in assessing employee satisfaction, performance, motivation, training and development needs, and employee retention should they want to opt out of their current jobs, and in determining other motivational factors that may help in improved productivity, profitability, and organizational image and its relationship with suppliers and the environment. Feedback is also vital in determining organizational behavior, culture, and how the management, in its change management initiatives could communicate its vision and change strategy to employees and those involved in the change management initiatives. A strong vision, dedicated management, and active employee participation coupled with reliable feedback entails successful change initiatives. These characterized unichem’s change strategy.
Fundamental benefits of the 360 Degree Appraisal method to the employees of unichem and the organization at large included unique ability to meet legal requirements and its basis on fair business practice. The method was also characterized by well trained raters and the organization’s employees were informed in writing about their performance expectations and requirements. Certainly, to a big extent employees had met the requirements. Unichem’s Appraisal method worked by involving the organization’s human resource managers in addition to establishing an environment where employee feedback was treated anonymously to preserve privacy.
According to Performance Appraisal Skills (2009), statistical techniques were employed by the organization’s mangers to determine impact caused by the appraisal method and the level of success. The method was principally characterized with observations and questionnaires as a tool to collect feedback information. According to the article on assessment tools and Their Use (1996), the management of Unichem had a wide variety of tools to select from in employee selection, recruitment and placement. Appraisal was done at various times, when recruiting and selecting, and when determining the performance standards of employees. Tools that could be used included mental and physical ability tools. These tools included general ability test and specific ability test, achievement tests such as knowledge and work sample tests. This approach to employee appraisal has significantly positioned the company in its current position.
Techniques of Performance Appraisal. (2007).Process of Performance Appraisal. Retrieved March 28, 2010, from http://appraisals.naukrihub.com/process.
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