Survey Finds Discrepancy in Perceived Value of Performance Assessments

Menlo Park, Calif. — July 12

How useful are performance reviews? It depends on whom you ask.

In an Accountemps survey, 94 percent of chief financial officers (CFOs) interviewed said formal evaluations are either somewhat or very effective in helping employees improve their performance. Yet about 31 percent of workers disagreed, saying these appraisals either somewhat or very ineffective.

The surveys of CFOs and workers were developed by Accountemps, a specialized staffing service for temporary accounting, finance and bookkeeping professionals and conducted by an independent research firm. The survey of CFOs is based on telephone interviews with more than 1,400 CFOs from a random sample of U.S. companies with 20 or more employees. The worker survey includes responses from 422 working adults 18 years of age or older and employed in office environments.

CFOs were asked, “In your opinion, how effective are annual or semiannual performance reviews in helping employees improve their performance?” Their responses:

• Very effective: 26 percent
• Somewhat effective: 68 percent
• Somewhat ineffective: 4 percent
• Very ineffective: 1 percent
• Don’t know: 1 percent

Workers, in turn, were asked, “In your opinion, how effective are annual or semiannual performance reviews in helping you improve your performance?” Their responses:

• Very effective: 25 percent
• Somewhat effective: 37 percent
• Somewhat ineffective: 16 percent
• Very ineffective: 15 percent
• Don’t receive performance reviews: 6 percent
• Don’t know: 1 percent

Source: Accountemps