Wilfred Chau Human resources manager, Chun Wo Construction and Engineering
Chun Wo conducts performance appraisals for general staff once a year. But for members of our "core staff programme" and other outstanding employees, there is an additional evaluation to keep a close track of their progress. Overall, we regard appraisals as an opportunity to review each person's work, give them their due recognition, and decide on salary increments for those who have done a good job.
In the past, we conducted appraisals to measure the quality of performance and the ability of employees to think independently, and make sound judgments. We used this as the basis for assessing potential and suitability for promotion. However, we are going to revise the system in order to link individual achievements more closely with the company's core values.
Apart from handling appraisals, members of our HR team go out to project sites at least seven days each month. The aim is to meet colleagues and talk to them face-to-face, so we can thoroughly understand the nature of their jobs, as well as their feelings and difficulties.
Sometimes, senior managers or supervisors may not be satisfied with the performance of their subordinates. If so, we take on the role of mediator to get both sides to talk things out. Quite often, the problem comes from a mismatch of expectations, which can be resolved by letting each person explain their point of view. Doing this really helps to improve work performance and understanding between colleagues.
General responses have been very positive. Employees have the chance to communicate openly with their supervisors during the appraisal interview. Anyone who doesn't feel comfortable expressing an opinion directly can come to us, so that we can act as a channel for more sensitive communication.
Perdita Fung Director of human resources, Hyatt Regency Hong Kong, Tsim Sha Tsui
To manage staff performance, managers or supervisors have an open discussion with subordinates every year to jointly review progress against previously agreed criteria and to discuss plans for future improvement.
The system is based on evaluating specific competencies, and staff are asked to review their own performance before sitting down with a direct supervisor, who also takes due note of points raised in any past appraisals. Both sides can state opinions and should take the chance to express these openly. The aim is not to conduct a "one way" review, but to encourage employees to put forward ideas and give constructive feedback.
The discussion should end with a decision about objectives for the coming year, which should all be "smart" - specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time bound.
We also conduct an intermediate review every six months for the benefit of supervisors and employees. This helps in evaluating progress towards the "smart" objectives and in keeping everything on track. In particular, it prompts appraisers to assist subordinates, so that they manage progress in specific ways and suggest applicable steps at the appropriate time. Emphasising the importance of two-way communication makes for better overall understanding of personal and team goals. We want to provide precise information for employees about different areas, including customers, business trends and people management, so that they continue to improve with a system which allows for ongoing performance management.
Supervisors and staff have found the system positive and productive, making it easy for them to share opinions. It also helps career development, planning within the group, and with identifying training and development needs.