Performance Appraisals in Human Resource Management Free Essay Samples & Outline

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Sample Essay on Performance Appraisals in Human Resource Management


Performance appraisals are used by modern organizations and corporations to evaluate employees contributions towards the achievement of the organizations overall aims and objectives. The organizations strategy for business growth is imperative for success and employees play a major role towards the realization of the company’s strategy. The creation of performance management systems and processes can help organizations to realize success. Effective performance management systems comprise of the elements of employee monitoring and evaluation as well as employee rewards programs.

Performance appraisals, however, do not usually work for the organizations sometimes they work against them. In this paper we explore the various advantages and disadvantages of performance appraisals and how they contribute to the achievement of strategic objectives of the organization. This paper will also discuss the forms of bias within the appraisal system. This paper will consider the concept of performance appraisal as a key strategy for the realization of specific company targets. Ko & Hur (2014, 178) presumes that performance appraisals positively advance organizations purpose, mission and vision.

Explain the strategic advantages of performance appraisals

Performance appraisals have multiple advantages for any organization in the world today. One advantage is that performance appraisals aim at providing evidence of employee performance within a specific duration of time. Another advantage is that they help to provide a platform on which managers and employees can interact to resolve emerging performance management issues. Employees can self-evaluate in order to help enhance his or her involvement in organizational matters, processes and activities. Employees also get the chance to reassess their goals and clarify their expectations and the expectations of the organization they work for. Performance appraisals do motivate employees if they are associated to organizational employees merit reward systems. These advantages, among others not here mentioned, are essential towards the achievement of organization’s objectives and goals (Duterhoff, 2014, p. 268).

Performance appraisals also do come with obvious disadvantages for the organization, its managers as well as employees. One disadvantage is that if not properly institutionalized, performance appraisals can generate bad blood among employees and between employers and employees (Ko, 2014, pp. 167-70). Another one is that performance appraisals consume a lot of time and can be especially tasking to employees and managers alike. When they not done correctly, performance appraisals can be a waste of time and resources and can create a stressful work environment which will work against the organization’s purpose. Performance appraisals are only as good as the performance management system within which they operate. These disadvantages can have drastic negative consequences for the execution of company’s vision (Duterhoff, 2014, p. 270).

The potential forms of bias within the appraisal system

A bias is a prejudice. Performance appraisals major impediment is bias. Free and fair employee appraisals are important because an appraisal that is not fair cannot and will not give a proper assessment of employee contributions. One bias is the Contrast Bias and it is where managers evaluate employee’s performance using other employee’s contribution as a standard for assessment. Proper appraisals are done using the company’s or organization’s standards for checks and balance. Another bias is the Halo Bias which manifests itself when an employee is rated highly because of something they do quite well however they are not holistic in their approach to meeting company standards.

These employees are given a free pass for many things that will earn sanctions for other employees. Horn Bias, is another performance appraisal bias and it is where the opposite of the Halo bias occurs. In his case the employee is rated very poorly because of one thing that they do badly and this despite the fact that they are exceptionally good in other things (Camps, 2012, pp. 7-8).

Leniency bias is the bias where a manager will give every employee a satisfactory rating either because of favoritism or because of manager’s lack of interest. Recency bias is a situation where an employee’s recent behavior plays a crucial determinant role in the appraisal. A very bad employee might have done something very good recently and because of it his entire record is expunged. The vice versa can also happen, where a consistently good performer is rated poorly because of something bad he or she has done in the recent past.

Purposeful bias occurs when a manager gives a negative rating to an employee because he or she feels that his position is threatened by that particular employee. This can also be because an employee has shown a sense of defiance of business orders or has a tendency to disregard the organization’s chain of command. Self-bias does occur when employee’s former appraisals influence employee attitude. If a previous appraisal has indicted an employee’s poor performance, such an employee may persist in his or her poor performance. The vice versa is also true for workers or employees with good track records. These are some of the major biases in executing performance evaluations through appraisals (Camps, 2012, pp. 15-6).

How performance appraisals contribute to the achievement of strategic objectives

Performance appraisals can be used to improve employee morale because managers and employees can identify weak points in their contributions towards the achievement of overall organization’s strategic goals. Effective performance appraisals should and must identify and reward top performers. Performance appraisals can also be used in budgeting because it offers the organization a foundation background on which to reward employees. Employee Rewards programs are very costly and they consume adequate financial resources in remuneration expenses. When there is clarity of employee performance, rewards costs can be appropriately allocated so as to maintain employee’s morale.

Performance appraisals are also important in setting short term as well as long term goals. Performance evaluation offers managers and employees time to discuss aspects of professional capacity enhancement and development. Managers can focus on company’s expected growth and how that can be achieved through proper performance management systems (Adler, 2016, pp. 223, 248).


Dusterhoff, C., Cunningham, J. B., & MacGregor, J. N. (2014). The effects of performance rating, leader–member exchange, perceived utility, and organizational justice on performance appraisal satisfaction: Applying a moral judgment perspective. Journal of Business Ethics, 119(2), 265-273.
Adler, S., Campion, M., Colquitt, A., Grubb, A., Murphy, K., Ollander-Krane, R., & Pulakos, E. D. (2016). Getting rid of performance ratings: Genius or folly? A debate. Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Perspectives on Science and Practice, 9(2), 219-252.
Ko, J., & Hur, S. (2014). The impacts of employee benefits, procedural justice, and managerial trustworthiness on work attitudes: Integrated understanding based on social exchange theory. Public Administration Review, 74(2), 176-187.
Camps, J., & Luna‐Arocas, R. (2012). A matter of learning: How human resources affect organizational performance. British Journal of Management, 23(1), 1-21.