Performance Appraisal Rating Factors

The following are samples of rating factors and example standards taken from a variety of sources. Some may overlap, and some may need to be expanded to include more descriptive and/or numerical measures. Please feel free to combine or modify them to fit your needs by cutting and pasting.


  1. Adaptability

    1. Efficiency with which employee works under stress and responds to change.

        • Receptive to change/new ideas

        • Shows poise and/or courtesy in tough situations

        • Demonstrates ability to modify behavioral style and approach to goal

  2. Assertiveness/Motivation

    1. Degree to which the employee pursues goals with commitment and takes pride in accomplishment.

        • Takes initiative eagerly

        • Demonstrates orientation to achieve results

        • Behavior reflects a desire to excel on the job

        • Works steadily and actively

        • Demonstrates self-confidence and positive attitude towards self and others

  1. Attendance

    1. The extent to which the employee can be depended upon to be available for work and to fulfill position responsibilities.

        • Reports to work on time

        • Communicates schedule changes promptly to supervisor

        • Maintains regular attendance

  1. Communication

    1. The extent to which the employee effectively listens, conveys and receives ideas, information and direction.

        • Seeks to clarify and confirm the accuracy of their understanding of unfamiliar or vague terms and instructions

        • Makes oral and written communication clear and easy to understand

        • Assesses and takes steps to improve ability to communicate (written and verbal) so ideas and consultations are conveyed with precision and efficiency

  1. Creativity

    1. Extent to which employee generates workable and innovative ideas, concepts and techniques.

        • Attempts to simplify and/or improve procedures and techniques

        • Initiates new and creative ideas or procedures to enhance the department or organization

        • Looks for new solutions to old problems

  1. Customer Focus

    1. The degree to which the employee takes the initiative to meet internal and external customer needs in a timely and courteous manner.

        • Examines customer requests to properly identify and resolve customer concerns

        • Supports customer service efforts through program design, implementation, recovery and follow-up

  1. Customer Service

        • Serves customers in a manner that increases their confidence and knowledge to resolve their own problems

        • Acknowledges shortcomings when appropriate

        • Reaffirms commitment to professional service

        • asking probing questions that elicit the facts and help the customer through some of the decision-making process

        • Responds to customer requests on contact date or within 24 hours

  2. Dependability/Initiative

    1. The extent to which an employee effectively and enthusiastically accomplishes assignments with minimal supervision.

        • Independently contributes ideas and projects

        • Adapts to change

        • Follows-through on work assignments

        • Demonstrates eagerness and positivism

        • Shares ideas and suggestions

        • Takes on new responsibilities

        • Willing to assist co-workers

  1. Job Knowledge

    1. The demonstration of technical, administrative, managerial, supervisory, or other specialized knowledge required to perform the job. Consider the degree of job knowledge relative to length of time in the current position.

        • Able to answer difficult questions

        • Effectively learns new skills

        • Maintains up-to-date job related information

  1. Judgment

    1. Ability to analyze problems or procedures, evaluate alternatives, and select best course of action.

        • Uses of logic and common sense in decision making

        • Makes appropriate and consistent decisions

        • Obtains and evaluates pertinent information to determine source of and alternative solutions to problems

  1. Initiative

    1. The degree to which the employee independently performs and accomplishes assignments.

        • Requires minimal supervision

        • Sees and acts upon opportunities

        • Independently contributes ideas and projects

        • Promptly undertakes problems and devises solutions

        • Acts independently within established guidelines

  1. Interpersonal Relations

    1. The degree to which the employee shows understanding and sensitivity to needs and problems of others.

        • Actions are intended to calm, diffuse, and be helpful

        • Interacts positively with a variety of people in different situations

        • Accepts and acknowledges suggestions from others

        • Works cooperatively and effectively with others to achieve unit goals

  1. Management Skills

    1. Extent to which employee demonstrates effective management abilities and overall results.

        • Effectively sets goals and establishes priorities

        • Improves work methods

        • Achieves expected results

        • Plans and administers budgeted funds

        • Implements cost-saving procedures, expense control, etc.

  1. Planning & Organizing

    1. The extent to which the employee plans, organizes and implements tasks or programs.

        • Demonstrates effective use of time and facilities subject to their control

        • Meets deadlines

        • Maintains a clear grasp of daily tasks

        • Prioritizes duties in a manner consistent with organizational objectives

        • Effectively manages tasks or program assignments including follow-through and delegation

  1. Problem Solving & Decision Making

    1. Degree to which employee demonstrates ability to clearly isolate, define and seek solutions to problem areas.

        • Effectively identifies & evaluates alternative solutions

        • Makes decisions consistent with skills and experience

        • Recognizes decisions that have to be deferred until all pertinent facts are gathered and analyzed

        • Flexible in modifying decisions

  1. Productivity

    1. Degree to which the employee produces the expected quality and quantity of assignments.

        • Attains conclusive measurable results

        • Maintains control and work pace

        • Completes assignments on time and to specifications

  1. Quality of Work

    1. The ability to set high standards for own personal performance; strive for quality work; put forth extra effort to ensure quality work.

        • Develops and implements new solutions, procedures and concepts

        • Demonstrates accuracy, thoroughness, and reliability

        • Shows organization and completeness

        • Pays attention to detail

        • Consistently delivers what is required when required

  1. Quantity of Work

    1. The volume of work produced by the employee, along with his or her speed, accuracy and consistency of output.

        • Accomplishes assigned work in an organized, timely manner

        • Alerts appropriate team member if deadlines need to be re-negotiated to accomplish work with higher priority

  1. Resourcefulness

    1. Consider the degree to which employee is a source of supply and support to the department, customers, and/or the organization as a whole.

        • Masters difficult situations in a timely and effective manner

        • Answers questions and deals with problems effectively and thoroughly

  1. Responsibility

    1. The degree to which the employee demonstrates dependability in work performance.

        • Completes work in a timely, capable and reliable manner

        • Adheres to instructions

        • Maintains regular attendance

  1. Safety

    1. Degree to which employee adheres to safety and health regulations.

        • Maintains and observes safety and health standards

        • Notifies others when violating safety and health regulations

  1. Stress Tolerance

    1. Degree to which employee's performance demonstrates stability under time and/or interpersonal pressure and opposition.

        • Demonstrates composure and good judgment in stressful situations

        • Maintains appropriate response and outcomes during encounters and/or periods of high levels of pressure

  1. Time Management

    1. The ability to adhere to one's responsibilities in a timely manner.

        • Meets deadlines

        • Manages multiple tasks with accuracy and efficiency

  1. Work Habits

    1. The manner in which an employee conducts his or herself in the working environment.

        • Displays professionalism

        • Demonstrates effective time management skills

        • Shows positive attitude

        • Maintains regular attendance

        • Meets productivity standards


  1. Consensus Building

    1. The extent to which the employee builds and maintains work relationships and contacts needed to effectively address problems and opportunities associated with their position.

        • Actively resolves workplace conflicts

        • Willingly undertakes assigned projects

        • Supports organizational goals and endeavors

  2. Teamwork

    1. The degree to which the employee works well in a team setting.

        • Interacts and exchanges idea

        • Observes the abilities and ideas of fellow team members

        • Works fairly and attempts to share an equal work-load with others

  1. Working with Others/Cooperation

    1. Extent to which employee works cooperatively with customers, co-workers and the public.

        • Gains confidence and trust of others

        • Recognizes strengths and limitations of self and others

        • Exhibits appropriate sensitivity to others' feelings

        • Focuses on performance rather than personality in relating to others

Facts [+]

Morning Star is a tomato processing company based in California, with revenues of $700 million and over 400 employees. These unremarkable facts would not qualify for a cover story in Harvard Business Review by management guru Gary Hamel (December 2011). What makes the company remarkable is that it has no bosses, titles or promotions.

A key element in Morning Star's model is what is called the Colleague Letter of Understanding (CLOU). Every employee negotiates his CLOU with all those affected by his work. This letter sets out what each employee is to accomplish in a given year. Similarly, the company's 23 business units negotiate CLOUs with each other.

Staffing decisions are made entirely by colleagues working together. There are no promotions: people take on greater responsibilities after persuading their colleagues they can deliver. Disputes are settled via discussion, mediation or decisions taken by groups of six people. Performance is measured through feedback from colleagues on one's CLOU. Compensation is decided through elected compensation committees.


  1. Cost Effectiveness

    1. Extent to which employee seeks best use of materials, equipment, and staff to maximize efficiency and effectiveness.

        • Uses effective materials to enhance department and/or job performance

        • Establishes budget and/or functions within the budget

  2. Delegation & Supervisory Skills

    1. The extent to which the employee shows the ability to effectively authorize work and supervise subordinates.

        • Clearly defines responsibilities and authority limits of subordinates

        • Makes effective assignments to subordinates based upon demonstrated skills and knowledge

        • Motivates employees to think and work independently

        • Recognizes individual capabilities and assigns work accordingly

        • Counsels employees in both positive and negative circumstances

        • Appraises performance and individual contributions

  1. Development of Subordinates

    1. Consider the employee's ability to effectively evaluate skills, knowledge, aptitudes, interests and developmental needs bearing on individual and group work performance.

        • Develops and implements or assures appropriate training or development plans and programs

        • Provides appropriate support for employee to reach his/her potential and goals

  1. Leadership

    1. Consider the employee's ability to direct the operations, activity and performance of others.

        • Gives direction without conflict

        • Creates environment that guides employees to accomplish unit and individual goals

  1. Performance Appraisals

        • Provides informal performance feedback on a regular basis

        • Acknowledges good performance and discusses performance problems

        • Prepares precise written annual evaluations

  2. Staff Development

    1. Degree to which employee provides opportunities to challenge subordinate's capabilities and develops the knowledge and skills necessary for career development.

        • Identifies training programs to improve subordinate's performance

        • Defines and communicates standards of performance and assists employees in achieving these standards

        • Encourages and supports staff participation in job related activities

  1. Supervising Staff Relations

    1. Consider the extent to which the employee effectively oversees and facilitates staff.

        • Shows fairness and impartiality in interactions

        • Demonstrates interest in employee welfare

        • Elicits staff input where feasible

        • Responds to staff suggestions and complaints in a serious, sensitive, and timely manner

        • Facilitates staff adaptability

        • Anticipates staff problems and takes preventive measures

        • Resolves disputes among employees

        • Handles corrective discipline and employee grievances

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