360-degree feedback process or multi-rater feedback refers to a feedback process in which employees receive feedback from peers, seniors, superiors, subordinates, direct reports, customers, etc to understand how others perceive a particular employee. – That is why the name 360-degree review or 360 feedback
All the associated members with whom an employee has some sort of relationship would involve in providing the multi-rater feedback to give 360 performance reviews that play a key role in knowing the strengths and weaknesses of the employees and hence optimize performance management in the organization.
What is the 360-Degree Feedback Process?
The entire 360-degree feedback process, wherein the manager peers or supervisor, along with other stakeholders, gives feedback.
The other stakeholders include the likes of reporting staff members, customers, and co-workers.
All the feedback provided by the following members at the organization gives insight into the behaviors and skills. These behaviors and skills required at the organization help achieve the vision, mission, and goals.
This plays a significant role in exceeding customers’ expectations of the organization.
All the organization members who are chosen as feedback providers provide a shared perception of the organization. These are the same people who have an interaction with the person that gives feedback.
The process empowers performance review and alleviates the performance appraisal system in the organization.
Why Use 360 Degree Feedback?
While performance reviews help in developing the performance of the employees within an organization and informing people about the consequences of their decisions. On this, the promotions, transfers, firing some will depend.
But on the other hand, the 360-degree feedback process takes the performance review to the more constructive forms of performance reviews. It helps in-
- Improving the insight of fairness of members in the process
- Improving the accuracy of the process
Extensive research in this field has yielded multi-rated reviews. These are the most efficient and effective in improving the insight of fairness of members in the process.
The more insight knowledge build trust enhances commitment to the organization and enriches job satisfaction.
Scientific facts prove that self-assessment enhances employees’ insight into fairness in a performance review process. There is proof that 360-degree feedback makes the employee feel fairly treated as they actively voice the process.
There are also reports suggesting that increasing the number of reviewers makes the process even fairer. If the goal is to increase the feedback process’s fairness, 360-degree feedback is the way to move ahead.
The difference in 360 Degree Feedback, Review, and Appraisal
1. 360-degree feedback
360-degree feedback is a method wherein a reviewer gets insights into his performance. Other criteria, such as results secured, competencies, and behaviors, are included.
All of the feedback is taken from various individuals who have varying relationships with the employee. For instance, direct managers, peers, direct reports, internal customers, etc.
The ulterior motive is to provide the employee inputs on improvements, and the results serve no other purpose. It lets employees know about their strengths and weaknesses.
On the other hand, reviews work on similar grounds but they are more than feedback. The review can be understood as feedback that tries to quantify something about the employee performance to make decisions on talent and compensation management.
The review results are used in some decision-making methods. Here, the employee’s compensation and promotion are involved. In the reviews, all the ratings from all around are brought into an average, and then it has proceeded further.
Then, the averages decide the rankings of the employees inside the organization. These rankings ultimately decide which employee should get promoted or not. In both cases, the inputs can be both qualitative and quantitative. Quantitative input in the way of ratings that are based on particular criteria like competencies and behaviors.
For instance, in Google, employees are reviewed based on quality results without handholding. On the other hand, Qualitative input tends to form a narrative that can sometimes be guided, and sometimes it cannot be.
For instance, Netflix conducts a feedback process that is structured every six months. People are encouraged to give feedback to their fellow employees on their behavior and work framework. This is more similar to that of the 360-degree feedback.
3. Performance Appraisal
It can be understood as a regular review of the job performance and overall contribution of an employee to a company.
Its other names are annual review, employee appraisal, or performance review. It evaluates the skills, growth, and achievements of an employee.
Companies or organizations utilize these appraisals for giving employees big-picture feedback on their work that ultimately justifying promotion, bonus, demotion, or termination decisions.
Purpose of 360 Degree Feedback
The primary purpose behind 360-degree feedback is to help individuals to understand their weaknesses and strengths.
The intention is also to give employees insights into various aspects of their work that requires professional development. There is a lot of heated debates in the management world with regards to:
- Selection of the feedback process and tool
- Who will give the ratings?
- Utilizing the feedback
- Review of the feedback
- Manage and integrate the method into a more significant performance and management system
Now, after knowing everything about 360-degree feedback, the next thing that you should know is the pros and cons of 360 feedback. Let us go through them one by one-
The advantages of 360-degree feedback are as follows:
- The employees receive feedback from various sources that optimizes the management of human resources
- This teaches the culture of accountability and teamwork that channelizes organizational development
- Uncovers procedural issues that can harm the employee’s growth with the help of which employees may do their self-evaluation and improve their performance
- Put forth all the related career development areas thanks to points of views of all the participants of 360 feedback including managers, decision-making group, and direct reports
- Diminishes rater bias and discrimination from the organizations
- There is a scope of constructive feedback to enhance employee outputs
- Gives insights on the training needs of the employees, plus channelizes self-assessment
Some of the downsides of the 360-degree feedback process are-
- A large amount of data collection is involved, and processing these data is involved in some stages
- It provides more focus on the weaknesses and shortcomings of the employees rather than the strengths
- This can sometimes fail to add value if it is not integrated properly into the existing performance plan
- It is merely a part of the performance measurement system
- It can sometimes include ratings from inexperienced members of the organization
- There is no accountability as the entire process is anonymous
- There are clashes to take care of within the organization if it is not implemented properly
How to take 360 Degree Feedback?
The following ways are the best way to use this tool:
- Never make people’s decisions using 360-degree feedback – Utilizing 360-degree feedback for promotion can lead to process-related anxiety. It also diminishes the chance of performance gains by reviewers and decreases the accuracy of the feedback.
- No side-by-side perspectives – This makes it easier for the reviewer to compare his self-reviews with other reviews. This significantly decreases the chances of performance improvement of the employee.
- Qualitative assessments are better – The qualitative components of the process hold more significance. This removes focus from the ratings and enhances performance improvements.
- Feedforward – The guidance that the reviewee gets on the methods and the areas of improvement in the coming times.
A 360-degree feedback process with coaching empowers managers and organizations in having a powerful system to improve employee performance and optimize customer service.
The process of 350 feedback channelizes a constructive shift towards partnership and teamwork.
A manager or leader who is unclear about the right ways that they can use to supervise and improve the performance of underperforming employees should opt for this multi-rater feedback. It will positively impact the working relationships between managers and employees.
How effective do you find the 360-degree feedback process for a manager and employee?