Prepare for your end-of-year Review

13 Mar 2018

New People Performance Process

The People Performance process for 2017-18 is built on the abolition of ‘Guided Distribution’, ‘Validation’ and the ‘Must Improve’ rating and introduces:

  • a rating process with four ratings – Exceptional, Good, Developing and Poor
  • light touch sense checking instead of consistency checking and validation

New rating process

The rating process is summarised under People Performance Procedure 4.2:

4.2 The manager and employee should consider where an employee’s performance falls in relation to these ratings, taking into account the descriptors and the employee’s performance throughout the year against known performance expectations. The appropriate rating will always be based on a balanced consideration of the employee’s personal performance over the entire period. Most employees will fall under ‘Good’ or ‘Exceptional’. A team may have no one with a ‘Developing’ rating at the end of the year. The Good rating encompasses the widest span of performance: at this level performance could be verging on needing development or generally satisfactory.

Poor rating strictly limited

The ‘Poor’ rating is strictly limited under new Procedure 4.3 to those undergoing formal poor performance procedures at the end of the year at 31 March. This includes those still in the warning review period or those who have reached the end of the warning review period and have been/are being referred to the Decision Maker and the decision is outstanding at the 31st March Those who are in the post improvement period will not be included in this category.

A team may have no Developing ratings

A team may have no one with a ‘Developing’ rating at the end of the year. As the appropriate rating will always be based on a balanced consideration of…personal performance over the entire period this also means a team may have no one with a Developing rating at mid-year.

Good rating covers widest span

The Good’ rating encompasses the widest span of performance: at this level performance could be verging on needing development or generally satisfactory.

Exceptional criteria

This rating covers Exceeded outcomes, exceeded competency and behaviour standards. No essential development necessary for employee to meet required standards for the role

Prepare for your review discussion

DWP has published guidance for employees and line managers for your People Performance 2017-18 end-of-year review: 

  • Your review should bring together the regular performance discussions you’ve had with your line manager, feedback you’ve received and anything you’ve done to develop yourself.
  • Before meeting with your line manager it can be useful to carry out your own self-assessment. Think about the things you’re proud of, what could have gone better and progress you’ve made towards your learning goals.
  • It’s also a good time to update and refresh your mandatory Security Code of Conduct checklist and make sure you’ve completed the new Security and Resilience e-learning.
  • You and your manager should also discuss your proposed performance rating which will be signed off by the counter-signing manager

Ratings must be transparent, fair and reasonable

The terms of People Performance Procedure 4.2, and Procedures 4.4 – 4.6 are intended to support appropriate use of the new ratings:

  • Ratings will always be arrived at based on a balanced consideration of the employee’s personal performance over the entire period and decisions must be transparent, fair and reasonable.(Procedure 4.4)
  • When reviewing performance over a period it is important to remember that minor one-off “blips” are ok and no one should be given a “developing” rating based on a low-impact one-off event. (Procedure 4.5)
  • The Developing rating includes employees whose performance has needed essential development over part or all of the year to address under performance – either on outcomes (the ‘What’), competencies and related behaviours (the ‘How’) or both. Development plans will focus on the areas requiring essential development to a satisfactory standard. The Developing rating is not appropriate simply because the employee is new to the job role, under Probation, an apprentice or on a professional accreditation programme. (Procedure 4.6)

Dispute unfair ratings

It is best practice to try to resolve disputes informally and only resort to formal action as a last resort. However, you can raise a formal grievance and appeal under People Performance Procedure13 but you must put your case for Management Investigation on form G1 within 30 working days of the original decision (Grievance Procedure 5.7). You may contact your local PCS Representative for advice, support and representation.

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