4 Performance Review Templates to Empower Employees

Mid-year performance review screenshot


Performance reviews often produce feelings of stress, overwhelm, and anxiety for managers and employees. And, most managers are spending a lot of time. In a study by the advisory service CEB, the average manager reported spending about 210 hours—close to five weeks—doing appraisals each year. 

WorkDove’s system helps streamline and automate the performance management process, and to help your team be even more efficient, we are providing ready-to-use performance review templates and tips for your team.

4 Performance Review Best Practices

Though performance reviews are intended to foster healthy conversations and look to the future, without the right tools in place the review can quickly shift to a monologue that is solely focused on past performance and behaviors. The most effective review discussions fairly evaluate employee efforts while offering coaching and development that helps them reach their fullest potential. 

However, we know that is easier said than done, so we have shared best practices and created performance review templates below to alleviate the burden reviews can often create. 

Before getting started with review templates, it is critical to ensure that the foundation for review discussions is solid. The list below highlights best practices for effective, action-oriented performance review meetings. 

1. Set Expectations Upfront 

Long before it is time for the employee and manager to have the review discussion, it is recommended to hold an alignment meeting. Alignment meetings provide a way for both parties to meet face-to-face and walk through the expectations surrounding every objective, goal, and core value/workplace behavior on the review form. Setting expectations in advance ensures everyone is on the same page, leaves no room for surprises, and sets the employee and the manager up for success when performance review time comes. 

2. Incorporate a Standardized Rating Scale 

A consistent, standardized scale for evaluating performance efforts minimizes potential bias and helps create a unified work environment. A recommended best practice is to incorporate a 5-star rating scale equipped with distinct definitions for each star. This practice sets the employee and manager up for success, as well as encourages a shared language across the organization. 

3. Clearly Define Objectives and Workplace Behaviors 

Providing crystal clear definitions for every objective, goal, and core value/workplace behavior alleviates confusion around expectations and ensures for a more comprehensive employee assessment. A best practice to consider is modeling all definitions around the organization’s mission and vision statements so all team members are aligned with the greater purpose. 

4. Utilize Performance Management Tools 

Though effective performance management is certainly possible through manual, paper processes, performance management software tools improve efficiency and minimize human error. Performance review software like WorkDove makes review conversations more informed and proactive, and create the ability to house historical documentation in one single source of truth. 

Performance Review Templates

Enhance performance with flexible, easy-to-use performance reviews that empower employees and give managers an effective tool for coaching. Above, you can download any of our templates and amplify your performance review discussions today!  And if you would like to schedule a short call to discuss WorkDove’s application, click below to chat with one of our experts!