Original Date: 04/07/1997
Revision Date: 04/14/2003
Best Practice : 360 Degree Performance Management System
In 1995, Rock Island Arsenal (RIA) instituted the 360 Degree Performance Management System (360 DPMS) as a result of a reinvention process from the Army Management Engineering College. Prior to this, RIA relied exclusively on the Total Army Performance Evaluation System (TAPES). TAPES is a supervisor/employee review process that is based on a uni-source evaluation. The shift to 360 DPMS was made to make the evaluation process more accurately reflect the employee's performance by measuring behavioral attributes like team support or workload sharing. Although TAPES is used to comply with administrative requirements, the unique aspect is that the input for it is the 360 DPMS.
The 360 DPMS procedure began with the labor/management partnership selecting and defining the feedback criteria. The categories formulated include technical support; practical support; technical competence; efficient use of time; communication; initiative; flexibility; customer service; working relationships; and process and self improvement.
Next, the employee selects the raters from people who are most familiar with the employee’s work. This group can include team members, customers, supervisor, team leader, subordinates, and self. A survey is then conducted from which reports are created and analyzed. The final analysis is a concise report that summarizes the ratings of the different categories, and is used to commend or intervene the employee's behavior.
The benefits of the 360 DPMS are that it is fair, simple, and trustworthy. With so many raters, the employee is evaluated from a multi-dimensional perspective. Being easy to fill out quickly, the survey has a cost savings through reduced labor requirements. An additional benefit is that the number of complaints concerning the evaluation process has decreased because the potential negative feelings of the supervisor having ultimate control is eliminated. By promoting a participatory culture, the employees are motivated because their performance will be noticed by the people with whom they work.
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