In order to gain a competitive advantage, organizations need to maximize human capital through performance management. Unfortunately, managers and human resource departments are often frustrated by performance management systems. It's due to these that some organizations have been reviewing their PM systems for better practices in PM.

Performance management is not an easy field to navigate as it's constantly evolving. That’s why there is always an emergence of new performance management trends to ensure an effective performance management system.

The problem, however, is that some human resource departments get it completely wrong. As a result, this causes employees to feel deflated, unmotivated, and disengaged. Managers on the other hand get frustrated by the poor levels of individual employees and team performance.

But thankfully now, a lot of businesses are waking up to the importance of effective performance management software. Note that the best way of improving existing performance management processes is to understand what an effective performance management system is.

What is Performance Management?

It's a system designed to improve the performance of businesses. It helps to spur employee productivity by ensuring that they are engaged and in alignment with organizational goals. It enables organizations to replace the annual performance review process with real-time performance tracking.

The best thing about performance management in hr is that it does something annual reviews cannot do. It helps in adjusting employee goals and expectations based on the change in working conditions. According to critics, annual reviews are focused on the past and not on forward-looking needs.

How to Implement Performance Management Software

You may have experienced a situation where systems implementation projects failed to live up to stakeholders’ expectations. In some cases, the software supplier or the software itself is blamed for the failure.

 This can be justified. However, the common cause of failure is usually poor implementation. That’s the reason why we’ve decided to give you guiding steps when it comes to PMS implementation.

1. Begin With the Preparation

The implementation of performance management software needs combined efforts between organizational stakeholders. There needs to be an assessment of the current performance management process.

Have a good understanding of how the new system works and its benefits from different points of view. This can only be achieved through a proper performance management plan.

The identification of business objectives such as employee expectations and the expectations of the HR department must be decided on at the very beginning.  

2. Consider Employees’ Feedback Processes

Continuous feedback is important whether your formal performance management system occurs semi-annually or within some other timeline. 

So you must think about your employees’ feedback process. Does it provide positive and constructive feedback and guidance to ensure that employees get the needed coaching? This is the kind of input that today’s employees crave from their managers.

Your employees’ feedback can occur through check-ins as part of the monthly dashboard reviews. So cultivating a culture of continuous feedback helps to ensure that employees are focused on the right goals and objectives. It also helps to ensure that you provide them with the right resources and the necessary support to ensure success. 

3. Gaining Employee Acceptance

You must include an appeal process to gain employee acceptance for the performance management software. This would allow employees to understand that in case of a disagreement regarding performance appraisal, they can resolve them in an amicable and non-retaliatory way.

 After setting in place an appeals process, employees can question judgemental and administrative issues. Judgemental issues focus on performance evaluation while administrative issues are about whether the policies and procedures are followed.

 Setting in place such processes or policies helps employees in feeling assured that disagreements will be treated fairly and objectively. That will directly help in gaining support for the performance management software system.

 4. Introduction of Employee and Manager Training

Performance management tools are only as good as the interactions they drive between users. Training both employees and managers will help to deliver quality and effective feedback. This is important as it helps to ensure that the performance management process is working as it should.

 It’s wrong to assume that managers or seasoned employees have the knowledge required to do performance evaluations. That shouldn’t be the case especially if their experience comes from working in other organizations.

 Remember that every organization is unique and as such, its performance review process will be different. Thus, you must take time to train both managers and employees to participate in reviews that will drive results.

5. System Testing and Configuration

Before implementing a PMS, it's important to give the software a basic run-through. Play around in a trial environment to get a feel for the tool. Note that this can be difficult since most performance management organizations don’t offer trials to potential clients. 

Even though trials may not be possible, you can still watch demos or product trials. This will help you in making an informed decision based on the information you’ll find.

Avoid getting impatient and frustrated by system testing and configurations. Remember that every tool has a learning curve and teething problems. Giving the onboarding process due diligence will have you reap the rewards.

6. Choose the Software

After taking care of the process leading to the implementation, it’s time to look at the software you need. Be sure to assess potential software against the list of requirements. The other factors to consider would be; 

  • The culture of the software. Find out if it's centered around scoring and assessment or if it encourages more quantitative feedback and discussions.
  • Is it mobile responsive such that it can automatically adjust itself to suit the size of a user’s screen? This would make for a good user experience on smart devices.
  • Support and expertise. Find out whether the software’s support base is in your country or overseas. Does the supplier understand best practices or are they just a software sales operation? 

7. Internal Support Driving Adoption

One of the challenges that businesses encounter when adopting a PMS system is that the results are not instantaneous. Change usually requires a lot of time and effort for it to become a habit and second nature. This applies to the implementation of performance management software and its adoption.

Organizations must ensure that they roll out a plan even if it's starting with a pilot team and gradually increasing to other teams. It's important to ensure that there’s continuous communication and support for team members. Note that there can’t be a 100 percent adoption result straight away.

There are a lot of things that an organization must consider when selecting and implementing a new tool. Thus, research is important in ensuring that you do what’s best for the business.


In conclusion, there are many factors that you can use to determine the implementation of an effective PMS. By considering the above steps, your organization will be good enough to implement a performance management process. So, go ahead and help to improve your organization’s productivity. It will help to put you ahead of the competition.