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Martin Searle Solicitors

Top Tips for Maximising Staff Performance

This blog was updated in January 2020

matthew grant and fiona martin at brighton community works

Managing capability issues in the workplace take up a lot of valuable time and many managers struggle with poor performance issues.

If you follow these suggestions not only will you end up with a positive and productive workforce but you will also feel confident that your fair but firm approach is benefiting everyone.

  1. Provide all new recruits with a six month probationary period. This enables busy managers to monitor at three months, set-up a performance review and dismiss fairly if the new recruit is the wrong person for the job.
  2. Quarterly reviews, with a yearly full appraisal will ensure that you are communicating regularly and positively about performance.
  3. Job descriptions should be regularly updated at reviews so they reflect your employee’s responsibilities.
  4. Difficult conversations around performance should be initiated by you or your managers by having a private word as soon as there is an issue.
  5. Your employee should be asked for their response to concerns before any decision is made to place them on a formal performance review.
  6. If there are management issues, such as lack of training or under-resourcing, put this support in place.
  7. Set-up a formal performance review process with agreed achievable goals and targets to be met within a fixed period.
  8. Any goals and targets not met should be carried forward with a formal warning, usually two, with dismissal being the final sanction, if there is no improvement.
  9. Three months is a fair starting point for a performance review, but this can be extended.
  10. Ensure that all meetings and communications around this performance review are formally recorded and placed on your employee’s personnel file.
  11. If dismissing, give your employee the right to appeal. Dismissal will be ‘on notice’ unless there has been gross negligence.

For help and advice about managing staff performance, contact us today on 01273 609911, or email info@ms-solicitors.co.uk.

About the author

Fiona Martin

fiona-martin

I lead the employment teams in our solicitors’ offices in Brighton, Eastbourne, Shoreham, Gatwick & Crawley and Croydon. As founding Director, I am also responsible for the firm’s marketing. I provide expert opinion for the press, disseminate employment law round-ups through my employment law blog and campaign on important issues such as maternity and disability discrimination. I train employers and HR professionals to be best practice managers and I am also a CEDR accredited mediator.

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