Performance Management Programs for Different Workforces

The events of 2020 have had a profound impact on how businesses operate. Specifically, companies have had to make major decisions on where and how employees work. Some firms have decided to keep employees at headquarters (HQ). Others have allowed workers to be remote while maintaining a HQ presence. And still other organizations have decided that their workforce should be entirely off-premises.

Regardless of the model that your company has selected, performance management plays a vital role in driving employee productivity and engagement during this uncertain time. Below are our recommendations on key performance management programs to prioritize based on your workforce model.

Significant HQ Presence

A significant HQ presence means that over 50% of employees are spending some percentage of their workweek at their headquarter location.

When to use this approach

An HQ-centric approaches make sense if:

  • Local regulations permit your business to re-open
  • Productivity and/or revenue is significantly higher when employees are in the office (recommended formulas for analyzing productivity and revenue are available in this blog post)
  • Your company has resources to make the office safer with plexiglass shields, frequent sanitation, personal protective equipment, etc

Performance Management Best Practices

Per Megan Kusanovich on Reflektive’s Employee Success team, “Returning to the office during COVID-19 may cause a level of discomfort among some employees. Companies can alleviate some of this uncertainty by communicating regularly and remaining open to employee feedback.”

  • Prior to returning to the office:
    • Run a survey to better understand employee needs and sentiment. Gauge employee comfort and desire to work from the office. 
    • Communicate expectations and guidelines on the return to the office. More guidance from the World Health Organization is available in this Q&A.
  • At the office:
    • Leadership should share information regularly on any changes related to working from HQ. Weekly or bi-weekly all-hands meetings, company-wide emails, and intranet pages are great ways to reinforce key updates.
    • Managers should schedule weekly 1:1s with their direct report to check on employee stress and potential improvements to in-office work.
    • Send pulse surveys to HQ employees on a monthly basis to better understand what is working well and what can be improved.
    • Boost positive sentiment by encouraging employee recognition. Drive adoption by creating a recognition challenge! (More recognition best practices are available in Reflektive’s Guide to Recognition Programs).

Remote Workforce

A remote workforce means that over 50% of employees are working fully remotely.

When to use this approach

Remote work is beneficial when:

  • There is a high risk that employees can contract COVID-19 — from the office or from commuting to the office
  • Employees can work productively at home
  • Employees prefer to work from home
  • The additional costs to make your office safer for employees are exceedingly high or burdensome

Performance Management Best Practices

Per David Laszewski, Chief Sales Officer at Reflektive, “Staying aligned while the sales team is remote has been so important for us. We use 1:1s daily, and update goals on a monthly basis, to drive accountability and run improved sales processes that yield more wins.”

  • Drive a culture of praise and development with recognition and feedback:
    • Plan lightweight, quarterly check-ins that cover performance and career development. After the check-ins, run a pulse survey to ensure that employees received value from the conversation.
    • Ensure employees can request and provide ad-hoc feedback to help them grow and develop
    • Encourage workers to provide recognition in their favorite apps, such as Slack, Gmail, Outlook, and Teams
  • Boost alignment with frequent 1:1s and goal-setting:
    • 1:1s can cover work and personal conversations, since employees are lacking their usual social connections
    • Use goals to drive alignment as well — they help employees better prioritize their projects and use their time effectively

Regardless of the approach that your company takes, performance management enables managers and employees to stay better connected and aligned. Consistently gathering employee feedback – through pulse surveys and 1:1 conversations – helps employees feel heard and supported during this ever-changing time.

If you’re interested in boosting alignment and engagement with your performance programs, schedule a conversation with an expert