Performance Appraisal Interview

The Performance Appraisal Interview consists of the following three Stages:

1. Preparing for the Appraisal
2. Conducting the Appraisal
3. Following Up

Let’s look at each of these in more detail:


It is important that arrangements for the Performance Appraisal be made well in advance so that both Appraisor and Appraisee have adequate time to prepare properly.

A number of things need to be done in preparation to ensure a fruitful discussion:

  • Review Appraisees’ Performance Appraisal Forms to refresh your memory regarding the Performance Measures (Goals/Objectives/KPIs/Competencies) that were agreed with them.
  • Review their previous Appraisal Summary & Performance Optimization Plans (POPs) to see what was agreed that they should work on improving. Did you do what you have undertaken?
  • Study their Performance Record Notes as accumulated throughout the performance period. Consult all other relevant records on their performance.
  • Inform them to prepare for the Appraisal by completing and printing out their Appraisal Prep Forms, and studying/printing out their Performance Record Notes. The system allows you to request that they release their Prep Form to you prior to the appraisal (check your company policy on this).
  • Agree a mutually suitable date and time for the interview. A minimum of one week’s notice should be given. For more senior and specialist positions, allow even more preparation time.
  • Select a private, comfortable venue where you can meet in a relaxed, unhurried, informal atmosphere, without disturbances or interruptions. Avoid sitting behind a desk during the interview. Rather sit together with the Appraisee in front of your desk or, alternatively, at a conference table. Sitting behind a desk transmits a nonverbal message of formality, reinforcing the “superior-subordinate” relationship.
  • Set aside adequate time for the Appraisal Interview, which may vary in length from 45 to 90 minutes, depending on the complexity and seniority of the position under consideration.


The Performance Appraisal consists of two distinct parts:

(1) REVIEWING PERFORMANCE: A “backward” look at how well previously set Performance Measures and Standards were achieved, and the factors that affected their achievement.
(2) PLANNING PERFORMANCE: A “forward” look at new or adapted Performance Measures and Standards to be achieved during the next performance period.

The following FIVE STEPS need to be followed to ensure a constructive session:

1. Start with an icebreaker
2. Explain the purpose of the interview
3. Work through the Performance Measures (agree Actual Performance, Ratings and POPs)
4. Agree Performance Measures and Standards for the next performance period
5. Close on a positive note

The online Official Performance Appraisal Form need to be completed by the Appraisor during (or immediately after) the Appraisal Interview to record the actual performance information, including the ratings and POP notes, as was mutually agreed on by both Appraisor and Appraisee.