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    Default building employee evaluations

    Good afternoon,
    Our shop has never done employee evaluations before but we are working towards getting something in place. I was wondering if anyone has had experience doing this for the first time and what we need to consider? My thoughts on the situation is to have team leads evaluate their guys/girls on a monthly basis by jotting down quick notes that describe a pro or con they see from an employee in a particular area. A sort of running record for the entire month for all the people they oversee. I know whatever I put into place has to be quick and easy or it wont get done. The major issue I am trying to avoid is subjectivity from the lead about the people they are evaluating. In order to go about that I am thinking whatever is written down must have a date and example of a situation that "proves" what the lead is saying is accurate. Something along the lines of "Matt broke 3 drills due to not having his coolant running on May 3rd, or "Matt started touching off his own tool changes on June 5th". The categories we are looking to evaluate would be knowledge, skills, quality, cleanliness/housekeeping, rework and attitude(this is a subjective item so it may not make the final cut or may weighted less). Production, attendance and disciplinary issues would be examined by myself(personnel director/HR) and the head of mills and head of lathes. These evaluations are going to be tied to raises so I would like to be as fair and comprehensive as possible. Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by jfeath View Post
    Good afternoon,
    Our shop has never done employee evaluations before but we are working towards getting something in place. I was wondering if anyone has had experience doing this for the first time and what we need to consider?
    yes...WHY ?

    Is the shop having some problems ?
    You certainly will stir the pot going down the path you describe.

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    This is not a bad idea if done properly. Of course, a department lead should have input into a valid review as should the department manager and the shop manager. All should be paying attention to everyones performance. One thing I think is a good idea, which was done at my last place and is being done at my current place, is to have everyone do a self evaluation. First time I had to do one I thought "what a crock of shit, seriously?" It's really hard to bullshit a self evaluation and you might get away with it once or twice but if you care about yourself and where you fit into the organization, you won't bullshit. Compensation and bonus' didn't just come from what your lead or manager thought about you. Hard data came into play too. Scrap rate for the department, due dates for projects were/were not met, absenteeism, etc. Subjective input came from leads and managers and were not the end all of the discussion as long as people were paying attention. Doing a self evaluation teaches you a lot about yourself.

    Paul

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    yes...WHY ?

    Is the shop having some problems ?
    You certainly will stir the pot going down the path you describe.
    Oh man! You can say that again! I've had years of experience working in manufacturing at times as nothing more than a worker bee and others in management. Speaking for myself and my former colleagues, there's nothing that will piss you off more than an unwarranted negative evaluation.

    Sure, if you are deficient in certain areas, anyone can try to do better. That said, I've seen evaluations that were done for retaliation or to get rid of someone who did nothing more than say the wrong thing at the wrong time, having nothing to do with one's work.

    Good luck to the OP on this one. Hope that it doesn't lead to an insurrection. If an evaluation is wrong, the company will pay a price.


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    Quote Originally Posted by LockNut View Post
    This is not a bad idea if done properly. Of course, a department lead should have input into a valid review as should the department manager and the shop manager. All should be paying attention to everyones performance. One thing I think is a good idea, which was done at my last place and is being done at my current place, is to have everyone do a self evaluation. First time I had to do one I thought "what a crock of shit, seriously?" It's really hard to bullshit a self evaluation and you might get away with it once or twice but if you care about yourself and where you fit into the organization, you won't bullshit. Compensation and bonus' didn't just come from what your lead or manager thought about you. Hard data came into play too. Scrap rate for the department, due dates for projects were/were not met, absenteeism, etc. Subjective input came from leads and managers and were not the end all of the discussion as long as people were paying attention. Doing a self evaluation teaches you a lot about yourself.

    Paul
    Meh... I disagree. Last place (more or less) I worked we did this horseshit. Didn't matter. We had some BS we had to write about improvements, social interactions, blhblah, then we "graded ourselves" on a scale of 1-5 (5 being the best). The first time I honestly did it, scoring myself mostly a 3 (average-aka "doing about where I should be"), one #2 for social crap since I pretty much worked alone, and I think one #4 for skills or something. My review came back all 3's and one #2. Standard 2.5% raise. That is what it was all about, the raise you got at end/beginning of year. I'm pretty sure managers and their buddies got 4's and 5's on those, but not us piss ants. It became known we were expected to "grade ourselves" as pretty much 3's across the board (and my last 'manager' there would be upset if we gave ourself anything higher than a 3!)....

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    I really, really wouldn't bother, from my many years shop floor & office based working experience it is a complete waste of time & will demotivate all your employees.

    Tony

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    How big is the shop, and what kind of environment? I'm guessing that since you describe yourself as an HR manager, and that you have supervisors/team-leads, it's a bigger shop?

    What is the goal here? Because in my personal opinion formed by experience having worked in a variety of shop environments/ownership types, is that evaluations rarely, rarely ever "build up" the employees. The only alternative is that they take on a negative light, in the attitudes of employees first & most importantly.

    Unless you're going to invest in the people FIRST - meaning, giving them interesting work projects, REAL training, and serious growth opportunities - then skip the evaluations, go to a points system, hierarchy/progression pay, and skip all of the hard feelings.

    I'm assuming that you're in HR, so I'm sure you have an HR-centric, college-educated viewpoint on this whole situation.

    I want to warn you, politely, that I think you're thoughts, expectations & opinions are going to be in the vast minority on this subject.



    If you, and more importantly the owner insist on employee evaluations, then keep it to concrete, objective facts to start. Attendance, discipline, overtime, apprenticeship training course completion, etc. This will at least let you get something standardized, but keep "feelings" out of it.

    I would even overlook crashes, scrap, tool-breakage etc. for a while. As an office employee, you have no business being judge or jury on this issue until you know the many WHY factors behind the tool breakage, etc. IF there really is a competence issue with an employee, the team-leaders & supervisors will escalate the issue to management. Then, YOU should advocate for the suspect employee (which will force others to provide objective evidence, but also air-out failings on the company to properly train, etc..) until a clearer picture can be seen of all the WHY factors leading to the performance issue.

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    I don't like Matt so he will get watched most often...
    HR person might have to much time on his/her hands so should spent half time running a machine.
    Raises tied to your evaluation of people will open a can of worms...
    For a smaller shop a bi weekly bonus for everybody when the shop exceeds an honest target will do more for productivity. Guys and gals will police themselves and try to make the extra 50 or 100 bucks bonus.

    Butter-up brown nose gets 50 cents and ten guys/gals are mad about that, is not good for productivity.

    [team leads] What is that ..the boss or one of the workers designated to be the leaser.
    Is it a shop that has leaders and Associates? Where the effort is not work but is Participation?

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    Employee evaluations work when they give your employees an incentive to do better work and gain skills. Otherwise they just become another system your employees have to game to get the compensation and promotions they want. That means there are metrics you want (related to profitability), but you have to take into account soft metrics that keep your people happy as well. The reality is also that the best systems use 360 degree feedback (meaning feedback from the person's reports, manager, and same level employees), which takes vast quantities of time to put together.

    IME 90% of companies make their employee evaluations such that not screwing up is more critical than doing the best work. Which then causes them to backfire on the company in terms of productivity. My opinion is that most problems at any business are a result of the system, rather than individuals. Most companies don't work to fix systems, they work to force individuals to comply or leave, with the obvious result that the replacement employee then also has to be forced to comply or leave at further cost to the company.

    As others have said, have the process and metrics in writing before sitting down, and be clear where people stand now and what they need to do to reach the goals you're setting. Definitely don't adjust compensation based on metrics that you haven't documented they should be keeping up with in the past.

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    Quote Originally Posted by michiganbuck View Post
    I don't like Matt so he will get watched most often...
    And/Or also - "Matt broke a carbide drill earlier because he touched-off the length wrong. I'm going to watch him with binoculars to see what else he does wrong. And because I'm watching - er, I mean [micro]managing him, I'm going to constantly give him instructions, criticism, and new instructions to make sure he can't make another mistake again. And if he does, I'm going to double-down on him. And if he does it again, well, then we'll have to put it in his file & possibly take disciplinary action..."

    Meanwhile, the clipboard jockey ignores that now he's injecting stress into what was really, just a commonplace honest mistake. At the same time, Bob, whom does pretty steady work, also broke a tool, but because he wasn't under the microscope, he just fixed it, and went on. Bob's evaluation will be favorable, while Matt's will be crappy, because, you know, Matt's got a record, you know...

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    Sorry I should have led off with some info about the shop to start. Company that has been around 50+ years, family run shop that has grown from one empoyee and one machine to a few employees over 100 on the shop floor, 3 shifts, with 5 screw machines, 3 swiss, 22 lathes (some bar fed some not), 24 mills, have a grinding dept and saw dept as well. We are a production shop that is putting out large quantities of parts.

    Digger doug-I see the need to do evals because I feel that employees raises only take into account the past two months rather than the entirety of the year which is crap in my opinion. Not sure why we havent done them before besides the tired line of "thats just the way its always been done". I also think having a few goals that folks are working towards might help to motivate them intrinsically. My bosses rationale is why am I giving this guy a raise who doesnt know anything more this year than last.

    Locknut- I had thought about self evals as well and think it would be great to do especially as we are starting something that is new to our employees.

    Newman109-I want to avoid the personal feelings and thoughts which is why I want everything to be tied to something specific and substantial, obviously numbers are clear cut so those will be used but not everything can be quantified like that. My thoughts are if leads give opinion type examples they get thrown out because they arent hard evidence.

    modelmarkerblue- in the times that they were done with you could they have been tweaked or done differently to be meaningful and valued in your opinion?

    Jashley73-you are correct that I have a degree but I also came into this shop and started on the floor, ran a mill for about 18 months before being put into this position, I know it did bother me when I was running that I never got an explanation as to why I got the raise I did or what areas I needed to focus on because my skills were lacking so I have to think others are in the same boat, especially the new folks.

    michiganbuck- our leads are guys that do setups, troubleshoot and oversee an area of the shop and the guys who run in their area. One thing I dont want to do is overwhelm them with another thing but they are the ones that are working with the employees everyday, sure they will pass things along to the guys who give out raises but its here and there and who is going to remember something a guy told you 7 months ago? I thought having something where they can just jot down the basics would at least give us hard data we can look at when the time comes to promote/give raises and wouldnt be 6 pages of BS.

    Pariel-Ive read about the 360 evals and it sounds great, I just dont know if I can convince my bosses that the time its going to take is worthwhile (goes back to the weve always done it this way mentality). I agree with you 100% that we have to have everything in place and set up so that employees know from day 1 of starting them what is expected and how it will be looked at. Luckily Im not in a time constraint to get this done so I can take time and work out as many kinks as possible before rolling it out.

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    If done correctly reviews are good for both parties.

    Here 2 reviews are filled out for each person.

    1. The person being reviewed fills out their own.
    2. The persons immediate supervisor fills one out.

    Score 1-5.

    Outstanding (5) Performance is consistently superior

    Exceeds Expectations (4) Performance is routinely above job requirements

    Meets Expectations (3) Performance is regularly competent and dependable

    Below Expectations (2) Performance fails to meet job requirements frequently

    Unsatisfactory (1) Performance is consistently unacceptable

    Topics covered:

    Administraion, Knowledge of Work, Communication, Teamwork, Decision Making/Problem Solving, Independent Action and so on.

    Written topics:

    Employee Strengths and Accomplishments

    Performance areas which need improvement

    Plan of Action towards improved performance

    Career Goals: What do you want from us as an employer

    Employee comment

    Once both parties fill out their review they are reviewed by the General Manager and they all 3 meet to go over the results. Areas of focus are where the disconnects are. Employees says they are a 4 and their supervisor says they are 2. And like every review the 1's and 2's are looked at.

    Between the 3 of them they come up with a plan to improve what they all 3 agree needs to be worked on and a schedule. The company then owes the employee the opportunity for success and the employee needs to commit to working the plan.

    We implemented this a few years ago and it has worked great. 100 person shop and we all get along fine. Where there is a divide between Management and "Rank and File" there might be a few things you need to work on first before implementing. There has to be trust and solidarity between the 2 groups to start. A common goal. If either party is not 100% committed it will be hard to implement.

    Get rid of the egos, the attitudes and the disgruntled. They are never good for any business.

    And as business be fair, consistent and honest...do it with integrity and not give anyone a reason to be disgruntled.

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    Not sure why so many people are against evaluations. I think it's important to sit down with the guys in the shop and let them know where I feel they are excelling and where I feel they need to improve. How can someone improve if they don't know they are lacking in a certain area? It is also helpful for me to hear how the employee feels they are doing or where they feel they need more help. This gives me the chance to help them be more efficient and confident in the areas they are struggling. Whether you sit down with the shop manager/boss/h.r. for an evaluation or not, your wages are based upon your skills.

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    Evaluations used wrong are a real disaster.
    Evaluations used right are good for everyone.

    One thing I've seen that worked well is to list a group of good attributes, ask which apply to a person, then list the same list of good attributes and ask which they can improve on. You could call it pandering to snowflakes, but trying to keep the entire review positive (ie could use improvement on "low scrap rate" instead of "has poor scrap rate") seems to prevent them from devolving into finger pointing quite as fast.

    Your attributes might be low scrap rate, positive outlook, creative solutions, excellent tool life, whatever fits.

    Also give employees a way to provide feedback on anyone above them in a confidential manner, and ensure that confidentiality is respected when discussing general observations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4 FN 27 View Post
    If done correctly reviews are good for both parties.

    Here 2 reviews are filled out for each person.

    1. The person being reviewed fills out their own.
    2. The persons immediate supervisor fills one out.

    Score 1-5.

    Outstanding – (5) Performance is consistently superior

    Exceeds Expectations – (4) Performance is routinely above job requirements

    Meets Expectations – (3) Performance is regularly competent and dependable

    Below Expectations – (2) Performance fails to meet job requirements frequently

    Unsatisfactory – (1) Performance is consistently unacceptable

    T<<SNIP>> .
    I can't say it will never work, but I have found that to be bullshit too. Many moons ago I got a call from a shop that got my name from someone(?) and asked if I wanted to wrok aprt time. I said sure so I went in and talked with the plant manager for maybe 15-20 minutes and got offered a aprt time position for decent money. I did that for a few motnhs, then quit my full time job and "applied" at the part time place, no big deal, I had already worked there, right? WRONG! Plant manager ends up conducting a 2 hour or so long 'interview' with me.

    Anyways, fast forward to first evaluation at 6 months or something. Have to fill out a damn book full of crap about my performance and yada yada. Sit down to discuss with plant manager, 2 hours later he concludes "You are doing a good job, I'm giving you a 15cent raise..." I was like WTF?!? I would have quit on the spot if I didn't have a young child at home at the time. All that fucking around for 15cents an hour? Go fuck yourself! I would rather have heard -
    1) We are not making money so no raises (a lie most likely, but a common one)
    2) Sorry, you aren't performing where we thought you would so no raise

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    Quote Originally Posted by AARONT View Post
    Not sure why so many people are against evaluations. I think it's important to sit down with the guys in the shop and let them know where I feel they are excelling and where I feel they need to improve. How can someone improve if they don't know they are lacking in a certain area? It is also helpful for me to hear how the employee feels they are doing or where they feel they need more help. This gives me the chance to help them be more efficient and confident in the areas they are struggling. Whether you sit down with the shop manager/boss/h.r. for an evaluation or not, your wages are based upon your skills.
    I know why I don't like evaluations. I've seen them misused in several places where I worked and not only on me. If your boss is a prick, it's a handy way for him to take you out. BTDT.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Newman109 View Post
    I know why I don't like evaluations. I've seen them misused in several places where I worked and not only on me. If your boss is a prick, it's a handy way for him to take you out. BTDT.
    Ya me too. I remeber one place where we got those little reviews with a 1-5 scale. The boss marked me all 3's, and one 2 for cleanliness. I asked him whay and he said "because you always leave a mess on the b-port" and I said I most certainly do not! I am usually the one that has to clean it up before I use it, then clean it again at the end of my shift. He shrugged his shoulders and said sorry, it's already turned in.
    Also same place once gave me a warning for my second un-excused abscence, understanding at 3 un-excused absences I would get a 3 day unpaid leave from work. I said I don't think I have 2, can you give me dates? He gave me the dates (which I knew one wasn't right), then I brought in my paycheck stub for one of the days in question and I showed him I had 50+ hours for that week so no way I missed a day.... too bad, already filed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike1974 View Post
    Ya me too. I remeber one place where we got those little reviews with a 1-5 scale. The boss marked me all 3's, and one 2 for cleanliness. I asked him whay and he said "because you always leave a mess on the b-port" and I said I most certainly do not! I am usually the one that has to clean it up before I use it, then clean it again at the end of my shift. He shrugged his shoulders and said sorry, it's already turned in.
    Also same place once gave me a warning for my second un-excused abscence, understanding at 3 un-excused absences I would get a 3 day unpaid leave from work. I said I don't think I have 2, can you give me dates? He gave me the dates (which I knew one wasn't right), then I brought in my paycheck stub for one of the days in question and I showed him I had 50+ hours for that week so no way I missed a day.... too bad, already filed.
    Id call that a useful review, but not for the usual reasons. If Im going to get screwed Id like to have advance warning and know who its coming from. You got both pieces of information in one place.

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    4FN27-Im glad to hear that its not all doom and gloom and can work if done correctly. I like the categories that you guys have and how it is a team effort when sitting down and discussing it. Was there any issues that had to be worked out due to personality conflicts between the supervisor and employee when evaluating?

    Jccaclimber- I could see where that would work and point out the areas of improvement that are needed while at the same time looking at a positive.

    I do appreciate everyone's help and insight on this and the fact that you took the time to read this let alone reply. As things get moving Ill try to update on the good and bad with what we put into place.

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    In addition to the boss and the worker each doing an eval of the worker, workers should be able to submit anonymous evals of their boss(es). Bosses will often make their mismanagement look like their worker's fault to their own superiors, never taking the blame.


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