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Is your employee performing poorly? Improve his performance using a performance improvement plan

by , 11 June 2013
Do you have an employee who isn't performing? Don't ignore the problem. Increase the effectiveness and productivity of your workforce using a performance improvement plan. Here's a five-step performance plan you can use to improve performance in your company.

Do you suspect one of your employees may have a performance problem?

Either it's because he's not achieving goals, meeting expectations or meeting goals and expectations but in an undesirable way.

Use these five performance improvement plan actions to deal with your poor performer correctly, says the Practical Guide to Human Resources Management.
Action 1: Identify the symptoms of the problem and why it's a problem

Ask yourself questions like is your employee violating company policy? Is he behaving inappropriately? Is he failing to perform the job? And why is the problem serious?

Action 2: Understand why the employee isn't performing

  • Does your employee understand that a problem exists?
  • Does he know and understand company policies or job requirements?
  • Are there mitigating circumstances impacting on your employee?
  • What is your employee's perspective?

Action 3: Provide support and direction

  • Ask your employee for ideas to solve the problem.
  • Offer your suggestions to correct the problem.
  • Agree on the performance solutions.
  • Agree on the timeframes to improve his performance.

Action 4: Support your employee's efforts to correct the problem

  • Thank your employee for being willing to correct the problem.
  • Encourage and motivate your employee.
  • Provide direction your employee loses confidence.
  • Applaud your employee's success in resolving the issue.

Action 5: If all else fails, use the applicable process

You have to investigate whether at the heart of the non-performance issues, your employee is actually able to carry out the work, whether he has the capacity for the work or if he's unwilling to do the work.

Once you've identified what the problem is, you must follow either the incapacity or the disciplinary process. Remember to conduct these processes in a procedurally fair manner.

There you have it. Using these five performance improvement plan actions will help you deal with your poor performer correctly and hopefully improve his performance before you have to start looking for a replacement.

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