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What metrics matter during a Recession, and how should you handle succession?

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Covid 19 has triggered an unfortunate economic recession along with its list of misfortunes.  In general, performance management in a recession needs to be predicated on greater visibility and communication. If the main challenge in a time of growth is finding ways to get productivity to match or exceed increasing demand, the main challenge in a recession is that demand tends to decrease.

For example, in your sales team it’s usually smart to place less importance on KPIs that track the accrual of new business and place more emphasis on KPIs that track business retention. Because these performance indicators tend to be harder to track, you want to measure progress towards quotas, as much as the quotas themselves. In order to do this, you need a system that can keep up.

In a recession it’s even more important to have visibility on who your high and low performers are, in order to make the important decisions necessary for your business to survive. It should be easy for managers to continually track staff and offer ongoing feedback. Integration of performance management technology with your training platforms can be useful, as you want to be able to quickly provide staff with the learning they need to get their performance back on track.

Behavioral competencies and 360 reviews

Similar to performance indicators, your competency models will most likely require a change. In a downturn you tend to want to favor innovation (the ability to find new business and improve efficiency) and resilience (the ability to withstand hardship) above other behaviors and skills.

Again, these can be harder to measure. To track those behavioral competencies, it’s a good idea to have a system that can enable 360o reviews, as they help to give you a fuller picture. You want to know what peers and customers think, as well as managers.

Recessions also demand organisational agility. Your platform should allow you to quickly modify positions (say, all sales managers) to include different competencies so they will be automatically populated as part of the next round of performance appraisals.

Contingency planning

The restructuring often necessitated before a recession means that you should want your succession planning to be a lot more dynamic than usual, because when a recession actually hits, it’s a lot harder to make up for a lack of talent in the leadership pipeline. Who are your high potential employees and what do you need to do to keep them around?

The right platform can streamline this kind of workforce planning. But it’s not just about your ability to

plan. At this juncture, succession is not just a top-down function that focuses on mitigating the risks of a role becoming vacant and knowing what skills you’ll need to replace. You don’t just want to understand employee potential, you want to give employees the opportunity to unlock their own potential and plan their career development around organisational needs.

For example, the right technology can allow employees to check the competencies of other positions in the organisation. They can then compare the competencies in their current position with the expected competencies, see where the gaps are and consult on and construct a pertinent development plan. With succession technology that’s integrated with L&D technology staff can then easily progress through that plan in a way that’s easy to track.

As a HR professional, you want technology that allows you to monitor the status of those individual development plans to get an overall view of succession options. But more than that, you want to be able to assess people in teams that might need to be cut to see if they have the relevant competencies to do well in another part of the organisation.

Hint: When it comes to performance and succession, you want a HR tech solution that can give you data that will help to identify role criticality, and then evaluate the risk of role vacancy.

Here’s how PeoplesHR can help you do just that:

  • Goal, KPI and/or competency/skill based evaluations supported.
  • 90, 180 or 360 degree evaluation capabilities.
  • Key performance indicator (KPI) based measurements and evaluations.
  • Track daily KPI achievements.
  • Goal revision facilitates changes to the KPI’s based on the business needs.
  • Reporting managers have the ability to propose goals to employees.
  • Ability to compare and measure proficiency levels with actual achievements of the employees.
  • Multiple intermediate assessments for goals and competency evaluations.
  • Facilitating employee rating moderation to tally with the expected bell curve by comprehensively standardising the actual against the expected results.
  • Bell curve with 3 levels of moderation.
  • Integration with training and development module to identify performance gap.
  • Multiple dashboards to analyse past performance trends.
  • Enable 2 level appraiser (reviewer) option with an additional appraiser to 180 degree method for more transparent and fuller assessments.
  • A critical incident journal that allows reporting manager to keep a detailed records of achievements and misses made by each employee.
  • Enable appeal when required.
  • Comprehensive on-screen dashboards with the organisation's performance ratings displayed for analysis purposes.

Analytical Overview

  • Track, manage and follow-up the entire performance management process with alerts and progress indicators.
  • Get the overall picture of your team and compare when needed for those critical decisions.
  • See your own potential for growth preparing for future movements up the career ladder.
  • Recognise those best performers within a competency of your choice for special job requirements.
  • Make decisions about your employees pay, based on their performance.
  • See how your team achieves their KPIs over time.
  • Multiple info-graphical dashboards of drilled down information on all areas concerning performance management.
  • Get a printable, Info-graphical summary with performance assessment details of any employee of your choice.

From promoting behaviors with 360 reviews to allowing staff to shape their own career paths, download the PeoplesHR Performance Management Datasheet for more information.