A Guide to Employee Performance Improvement Plans

As much as a manager envisions a team of well qualified employees that always perform at the top of their abilities, there always has to be a plan of action in place when someone is not living up to their responsibilities. Quickly moving to terminating a staff member shouldn’t be the resolution as this step involves a lot of time and money to spent in replacement of that “troubled” employee. It is important to do a little bit of detective work and attempt to address the overlying issue and make steps towards improving productivity and ensure continued employment.

Employee Interview ProcessCommunication, as always, is an important tool to use when addressing the performance of an employee. If you notice a decrease in productivity, let that employee know of the change and ask if there is an issue they are having or maybe some miscommunication that lead to the circumstance. This may be the only step needed to get them back on track. If the slack behavior does continue, however, it may be time to take a more proactive approach and use a method called the Performance Improvement Plan or PIP.

The PIP allows there to be an open communication and agreement that outlines an employees goals and the necessary support they may need to accomplish them more efficiently. Methods like the PIP are put in place to specifically outline the course of action to be taken for an employees success. It is to be detailed to reflect performance issues, set clear and reasonable expectations and provide a timeline that offers an employee a real chance to improve their performance. Although this may not always work, it is essential that a manager reinforces the employees contribution and importance to the team.

The clear point is to maintain communication at all times and offer help along the way to let an employee know they are valued and their performance is essential to the success of the office. Having to make the decision to terminate an employee is never easy but if it has to be done, an employee or employer should not be caught off guard and all attempts should be exhausted in preventing this difficult course of action.


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