Performance Review and Development - FAQs Q: How will staff find out about the PRD if they can’t attend the Road Show? • There will be information available via ‘In the Loop’, and the HR website. They can also speak with their Head of School or Unit Director • The Roadshow presentations will also be recorded and made available to those unable to attend • Q: When will staff start using the new PRD? • For Professional Staff the transition can begin straight away, in line with the usual cycle of performance reviews and goal setting from Nov-Feb. For Academic staff, the PDF can be signed off for 2013, however the goal setting for 2014 should await the release of the ‘Performance Expectations for Academics’ document. This document should be released shortly, please speak with your DVC or PVC is you would like more information. • Q: Who had input to the redesign of the PRD? • As part of the Future Workforce Plan, we had a small project team review our current processes, benchmark externally, and analyse feedback from numerous sources including the Your Voice Survey • The team consulted widely, listening to the issues and concerns of both academic and professional staff • Throughout the design phase, the team tested ideas to improve the PDF and collaborated with subject matter experts and academic leaders • We are very appreciative of the constructive contributions made by a wide range of people to ensure the new PRD meets the future needs of UoN
Performance Review and Development - FAQ’s Q: Has the new PDF been given a new name? • Yes, it will now be called PRD which stands for Performance Review and Development • PRD was chosen because it is clear and straight forward, and means what it says Q: Why has implementing a ‘new’ PRD been given such a high priority in the Future Workforce Plan? • PRD is important because it impacts on all staff • As we implement New Directions, the PRD is the process that connects all staff to our strategic goals and NeW Directions. • Finally, we had feedback from staff in The Your Voice survey that told us that PDF wasn’t working and that we needed to refresh our approach. Q: Where is the greatest opportunity for UoN to improve how performance and development is managed? • The greatest opportunity for us to improve is to have a process that encourages managers and staff to discuss performance expectations and provide performance clarity. • Being clear about performance expectations will enable staff to set their goals and work towards them, knowing that by doing so, they are contributing to the success of UoN
Performance Review and Development - FAQ’s Q: Will the new PRD require a new IT system? • No, the existing PDF IT system, will be upgraded to a newer version which should see some improvements in its ease of use • Managers’ and staff commitment and engagement to the PRD will have a far larger impact than a new IT system Q: The current IT system isn’t user friendly. Have improvements been made to it? • The goal sign-off padlocks have been removed, enabling staff and supervisors to update their goals and record progress comments throughout the year • Staff will now be able to copy goals from the objectives library, their previous folder, as well as their supervisors folder • Supervisor change tracking has been enabled in the system, which will allow reporting line changes in the HR database to flow directly through to PRD online • Staff on contracts of greater than 6 months will now be able to participate using the PRD online tool
Performance Review and Development - FAQ’s Q: Will the PRD be piloted first, to prove it works? • We have had many years experience with performance management, and we have built up our knowledge of what works well and what hasn’t worked so well • So the PRD is a refinement based on our learnings combined with an approach that will be fit for the future • 2014 will be a year of transition where we will put the PRD into practice for all staff and as we do, we will take the time to monitor how it is going and develop further improvements and refinements. Q: How will the PRD be different from the PDF? • There will be a number of process improvements such as clear and simple steps to follow, a format for performance conversations that helps managers and staff have effective meetings as well as the inclusion of our Leadership Framework to enrich development planning • Also the support for managers and staff will focus on the key steps, in areas such as writing SMART objectives, or providing feedback, and this support will be scheduled to align with the annual PRD cycle Q: What will be the major difference between the ‘old PDF’ and the ‘new PRD’? • The major difference will be the emphasis on making the performance management part of everyday conversations, for example, during regular catch ups or informal meetings • These everyday conversations are framed by the formal PRD meeting to review accomplishments, set expectations and agree goals for the year ahead – so when we connect formal performance management with the everyday performance management of staff, a big difference will be made.
Performance Review and Development - FAQ’s Q: What is the key message for staff about the new PRD? • Be clear about what performance is expected of you, sit down and discuss these expectations with your manager • And ensure you have regular conversations throughout the year about your progress, so at the end of the year there are no surprises. Q: Why will Development Planning now take place mid-year? • We want to make sure that the PRD focuses on staff performance and staff development and avoid blurring of these processes. • We had feedback from staff that they would like to receive more support for their career development • This is a simple way to re-dress the balance and to ensure managers and staff talk about career aspirations and formulate development actions together • We encourage discussions regarding development planning to occur throughout the year, including during the Nov-Feb performance conversation. We have designated the May timeframe to development planning to ensure that this important activity receives dedicated focus – not to suggest that it can’t occur at other times
Performance Review and Development - FAQ’s Q: Why is it important for Staff to have Development Plans? • Every staff member should have a development plan, development plans are not just for staff who are seeking a promotion or a career move • We need to promote ‘life-long learning’ for all staff, academic and professional. • Development plans are about building staff capabilities and providing staff with a more satisfying work experience Q: What activities should Staff include in their Development Plans? • It’s important to include a mix of experiences in your development plan • Training courses are obvious examples • But also ways in which you can learn though experiences on-the-job, such a special projects or secondments • As well as experience where you learn though working with others, utilising your networks, or partnerships or having a coach or a mentor
Performance Review and Development - FAQ’s Q: The format for the individual Performance Conversation is paper based, does this replace the on-line system? • We have a introduced a paper based conversation format, to encourage managers and staff to sit down and talk to each other. This is the most important element of the new PRD, having a conversation. We would like the on-line system to be used to record the agreed goals, progress comments and the end of year performance summary, but not get in the way of a conversation. Q: I don’t have the time to do PRD, can I opt out? • We regard PRD discussions as very important and central to the way performance is managed at UoN, and so we expect staff to participate. Q: Why are we launching the PRD if all elements are not ready? • The first stage of the implementation is to start communicating the changes to the PDF, why these changes are important and how we will improve the process. The implementation will be progressive and as new elements such as performance expectations and the leadership framework are released we will spend time communicating and consulting with staff. • 2014 is a year of transition, of putting the new approach into action and learning by doing. We will adjust the process along the way to ensure that the enhancements result in the desired outcome – an effective process to manage people, performance and support career development.
Performance Review and Development - FAQ’s Q: Can casuals participate in the PRD process? • For this first pilot we have expanded the scope of staff to include staff on contracts on greater than 6 months, and ongoing staff. However this doesn’t preclude supervisors having conversations with casual staff and the new conversation template would be a useful guide in this situation. Q: What about staff currently on Probation? • Your probation review will occur at a different time to the PRD process, as it is aligned with your initial commencement date with the University. However the principles of performance expectation setting, regular everyday conversations, development planning and performance review still applies. Additionally we hope to include probationary staff in the PRD online tool throughout 2014, so you can keep a record of your goals, feedback and achievements.