Positive Online Performance Appraisals: Mediware’s Success

Posted by Julie • November 21, 2014 (Last modified July 29, 2018) • 3 min read

A Positive Online Performance Appraisal Story

This is the 2nd story in a series about positive online performance appraisals. We’re interviewing customers who do appraisals consistently and successfully. Then, we’ll share their stories about what works and why.

Mediware is a medical software company with headquarters in Lenexa, Kansas and locations around the world.  They are a growing company.

I spoke with Mary Truvilion, VP of HR at Mediware. Mary’s super busy with all things HR, including performance management. We talked about the performance process at Mediware. Mary and her team supervise the process.

Mediware conducts performance appraisals regularly. The appraisals are completed on time each year.  Both managers and employees participate.

What’s working?

Mary and team manage start the performance cycle Mediware’s efforts by providing regular communication about the process to all employees, usually by email. Mary also schedules educational opportunities (both in person and via web conference) to employees and managers regarding appraisal timing and goal setting.

Through employee surveys, Mediware found that appraisal feedback is something employees want.  Ideally, employees would like feedback all year, not just at appraisal time. But, they’ll take it as it comes. In fact, some employees new to Mediware (through acquisition) have mentioned that a source of disappointment from previous companies was a lack of formal feedback.

The employee sentiment happens to align with Mediware’s goal-driven culture.  Mediware’s executive team works well together. They come with prior experience, accustomed to goal setting as a part of their prior work experience.

Together, the executive team sets company-wide goals and shares them on a one-page PDF called the “Target Chart” with all VP’s ad GM’s.  The Target Chart shows targets (goals) for each area of the company. Managers receive the target chart, then align their efforts.

Each manager is held accountable for goal setting.  As with any organization, some managers find goal setting easy, and others find it a bit more challenging establishing SMART goals (goal setting is never easy, is it?)

At Mediware, some employee bonuses are determined by performance.  Were goals achieved?  Yes. Overall, the employees performed very well against their assigned goals.  In fact, the average goal score was 4.24 out of 5.

When appraisals are conducted, managers have found the employee’s self-appraisal is a good conduit to an open conversation.  It allows managers and employees to ask and answer things together.  Of course, Mary’s also heard the universal issue that negative feedback is hard to give, and it’s difficult to write comprehensive feedback. 

What’s the result of appraisals and goals being a part of the Medicare culture? Mary says organizational performance has increased each year. Is the increase a result of performance appraisals and goal setting? Mary believes there is a direct correlation based on the goal score. The goal section on the appraisal provides a way for employees and managers to set expectations, and see how individual efforts align with the company’s targets.

And, employees receive feedback that’s important to them.

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