How Real-Time Feedback Improves Employee Performance

Why wait for the annual review to give performance feedback to employees? Seems almost ridiculous to wait a whole year before giving an employee to feedback they need to succeed, but a lot of companies still do this!

Thankfully, the annual performance review is rapidly becoming a thing of the past – but is that happening fast enough? Sixty-one percent of employees would like immediate, on-the spot feedback about their performances, but only 24 percent of employees get such feedback.

To make matters worse, 54 percent of CEOs believe they are giving the immediate feedback employees want. Since leaders, managers, and employees are not on the same page here, we thought it would be a good idea to share some insights on the value of real-time feedback:

Real-Time Feedback Motivates Employees

Few people – if anyone – love annual performance reviews. They tend to be draining and time-consuming, and any new energy they spark in employees often withers away in a week's time.

With real-time performance feedback, however, you keep employees excited and motivated throughout the year. Real-time reviews help employees understand how their contributions fit into the big picture and contribute to overall organizational success. As a result, employees are more engaged in their everyday work. Regular recognition from peers and managers serves to remind employees of their individual goals, which helps employees stay on track.

Real-Time Feedback Promotes Continuous Learning and Development

You can learn a lot about your employees during performance reviews, but it's hard to fully appreciate everything an employee contributes to the organization when reviews only happen once a year. Real-time reviews, on the other hand, help you stay up to date on each employee's achievements.

When you use real-time feedback, both managers and employees maintain continuous communication. This helps managers and employees align their expectations of one another. This constant communication also makes it easier for employees to bring new ideas to the table when they are relevant, rather than waiting for their once-yearly chance.

A culture of real-time feedback allows managers to recognize top performers and provide course correction early on. Catching those mistakes before it's too late can save you time and money.

Don't Manage Your Team – Coach It!

I'm not saying you should throw your title out the window, but to be the most effective manager you can be, you must act as your team's go-to advisor. Employees should be able to turn to you for guidance whenever they need it.

Real-time performance reviews allow you to be a constant coach – and, as needed, a cheerleader. Furthermore, research suggests that when managers check in on employee progress weekly, employees are 24 times more likely to achieve their goals.

Having regular conversations about performance and development helps you build the workforce your organization needs to be competitive both today and years from now.

The question you need to ask yourself as a CEO or manager is, "Why do I continue to put myself and my employees through a long and painful annual review process when I could improve their work right now?"

A version of this article originally appeared on the iRevü blog.

Michael Heller is the CEO and founder of iRevü.