Our approach to the development and implementation of performance evaluation systems is similar to our approach to all of our personnel testing. It is client driven, professionally developed, and valid in all respects.
Most people think that the problem with their performance evaluation or measurement system is the form. They tell us that the form doesnt cover the right areas; the form is too complex and requires too much time; the form has no relationship to pay or other meaningful outcomes; the form hasnt been changed in years; and so forth.
It has been our experience that the problem with most organizations performance evaluation system is not the form on which the data are collected or documented. Rather, it is the entire system of identifying goals and tying them into the overall mission of the department, having supervisors and subordinates work out their expectations of one another, coaching employees, fostering trust, and doing all those other things which make an organization work. If all of the other pieces are in place, then a blank piece of paper will work as a good "form" for evaluation.
When we work with an organization to establish a performance management or evaluation system, we almost always end up with a new form for measurement of employee and organizational progress. But that is never considered the ultimate goal of the process. Rather, we work with organizations in developing a system for establishing goals (translating organizational goals into individual employee goals), increasing communication, and developing means of measuring success.
This systems approach will not go "out of style". It is a dynamic process which evolves as the organization evolves. We dont give our clients a single tool which will wear out over time. Instead, we give them the skills to develop new tools as their organization grows.