360 assessment has huge advantages, giving employees critical insights to help boost their performance. Handled incorrectly, though however, this powerful tool can become unwieldy. All too often I encounter companies who want to roll out their 360 project too quickly and without the necessary logistical review. Keeping some important guidelines in mind when planning and delivering your 360 assessment maximises its ability to deliver will help to ensure it delivers the desired returns.
1. Maintaining a clear focus in a complex process
360 projects are complex and the more employees involved the more challenging they become. Among the variables to juggle are the initial 360 set up, the communication strategy to raters and ratees, collecting information and formulating reports. The key is to maintain a sharp focus on what you’re trying to achieve, implement a clear process that’s easy to follow and communicate both to all involved, allowing sufficient time to encourage employee buy-in. Companies often underestimate the time needed, which can result in rater fatigue and disengagement from the process.
2. Ensuring constructive feedback
The purpose of 360 assessment is to provide effective feedback; it’s not a stage for reciprocal backslapping or backstabbing. Training is imperative to make sure everyone knows why they have been asked to contribute and what constitutes constructive feedback. Pitching it as a development tool facilitates a more fruitful and valuable experience that ratees can genuinely learn from. Also, having a system where you can tailor exactly with flexibility in what information is presented to ratees gives you more control and enables you to deliver feedback appropriately.
3. Follow through
360 assessments provide a solid platform for employee development and in turn can increase motivation and engagement. However, this won’t happen if reports are thrown in the bottom drawer to gather dust with no guidance on what to do with the information. Formulating and implementing action plans based on the 360 assessment results with regular follow-up will help to ensure you and your employees reap the full rewards.
To hear more about how to increase the effectiveness of your 360 assessments using Profile:Match2 or to join a PCL workshop on this topic email firstname.lastname@example.org