What is continuous performance management (CPM), and why do businesses need it?

What is Continuous Performance Management (CPM)?

Continuous Performance Management (CPM) is defined as the workforce performance measurement process that happens on an ongoing basis all year long. Traditionally, organizations used to conduct performance appraisals or workforce performance reviews once or twice in a year. While the frequency is an organization’s prerogative, doing it annually or bi-annually is not advised. With longer durations, many employee achievements, successes don’t get recorded in employee reviews. This results in an incomplete picture of an employee’s performance.

A recent survey revealed that about 45% of HR managers believe annual performance reviews are inaccurate to measure an employee’s work.

Since CPM is ongoing, all achievements, goal completions, assignments are tracked effectively. This paints a much better picture, and there is more data to look at. With this, it gets easier to spot trends, provide feedback for improvement, assign more responsibilities, etc. Organizations are embracing CPM now more than ever. They have clearly recognized the benefits it offers over the annual review process.

A recent survey says that a staggering 96% of employees want to receive feedback regularly.

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What are the benefits of Continuous Performance Management (CPM)

When done at regular intervals, CPM is the best tool to highlight an employee’s performance. Let’s look at the top 10 benefits of a Continuous Performance Management system.

  • A clear picture of employee performance: CPM takes into account many stakeholders; this helps you get a wholesome picture of an employee’s performance. Since an employee interacts with many people across various departments, it helps in an employee’s growth and development significantly. This is a clear and significant benefit over traditional performance management processes and traditional annual appraisals.
  • Employees are always updated: With meetings and ongoing one-on-ones between manager and employee, employees get real-time feedback about their performance. This helps in identifying immediately any shortcomings or positives. This is crucial in rectifying any mistakes or ramping up on activities that are bringing in good results.
  • Timely feedback helps: With timely feedback, you can take step by step corrective actions if needed. This is crucial for improving an employee’s performance and helping them grow. With annual reviews, managers may miss out on a few things that may affect coaching and employee performance.
  • Improves opportunities for growth and development: Identifying gap areas is important, knowing those helps employees and managers act on them. Employees can opt for proper training programs based on the feedback received, helping them grow and develop continually.
  • Forward-looking: CPM is more forward-looking; the aim is to look at future growth opportunities than past mistakes. Focusing on in-depth and frequent feedback, rather than year-long corrections, it helps improve employee development and performance.
  • Identify and close skill gaps: Over the last few years, it has become extremely crucial for employees to upskill and reskill. One of the biggest problems still faced by managers is a shortage of skills. It’s tough hiring the right candidate with the right skills, which means internally, an effort has to be made to close these skill gaps. CPM helps identify and close any skill gaps.
  • Improves employee engagement: With CPM, employees are ensured that they are heard, and their performance improvement is being evaluated regularly. With open, frequent conversations, engagement levels automatically go up. Healthy engagement levels are crucial for arresting employee attrition and improving staff productivity and workforce morale.
  • Provides a closer look at KPI: With the involvement of multiple stakeholders and regular check-ins, the data gathered is more accurate and paints a bigger picture. This provides significant and clear data on employee KPIs. This lets managers know how employees react in different situations with different people at work.
  • Improved staff retention: Frequent check-ins help identify employees that are an attrition risk. Many of these employees may stay back if their issues and concerns are recognized in due time. CPM helps identify reasons impacting employees’ intent to stay assisting organizations in taking necessary actions.
  • Better goals alignment: Every employee has goals, big and small. These can be based on the deadlines, amount of work, etc. Improper goal alignment can hinder an employee’s performance. With CPM managers can ensure that all goals are properly aligned and are SMART – specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based goals. Managers can also help employees align themselves better with organizational goals. Goal setting is crucial for individual and organizational success.

Continuous Performance Management (CPM) software and tool

Using QuestionPro Workforce is a significant first step towards CPM for your organization, for it is a versatile performance management software. You can use the online survey software and platform to conduct surveys, gather data, and analyze it to make informed decisions. Here are the top four advantages of using an online survey software or platform like QuestionPro Workforce for continuous performance management.

  • Quick and hassle-free: There are pre-set templates that you directly deploy for gathering results. You can modify them or create entirely new ones; either of the methods is quick. Organizations prefer such tools as they are very user-friendly, and designing a survey is very fast.
  • Role-based access: When you conduct employee surveys, maintaining privacy and anonymity is a key concern. You would want to have limited access to data for some people, and full access to some people. Online survey tools give you the option to assign role-based access to people, ensuring security and privacy. We have more details on this listed in this people analytics blog.
  • Analytics: Gathering data that is information-rich is the primary criteria for conducting online staff surveys and questionnaires. Tools like QuestionPro Workforce provide real-time data with in-depth analytics, arming you to make informed decisions and improving your employee processes.
  • Customized portal: You can customize your online survey portal anyway you want. This helps in branding and lending credibility; this has proven to improve the response rate of employee surveys. Here are some more benefits of using branded survey portals.