SHRA- Performance Management

Creating Performance Plans

Managing includes providing on-going feedback to employees through coaching and frequent discussions throughout the performance cycle. These discussions should be held on a regular basis, as well as in response to changes in performance. At some point during the performance cycle, supervisors may need to address performance deficiencies with their employees.

Performance Planning Discussion: The supervisor shall hold a performance planning discussion individually with each employee and put a performance plan in place by the department deadline, This should happen concurrently with the close of the current appraisal process.

Individual Goals: Each performance cycle, the supervisor shall define three to five individual goals for each employee (S.M.A.R.T. goals). These goals may be specific to an individual, a work unit, or a classification group and should support the organizational unit’s mission, strategic goals, and priorities. Each goal shall be written at the “meeting expectations” level of performance and shall be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely. 

Institutional Goals: Institutional Goals are comprised of five standardized goals set by the UNC System Office for all SHRA employees that address critical aspects of every employee’s overall work product, plus one additional goal for SHRA supervisors.

Weighting Goals: The individual goals comprise 50% of the final overall rating, and the institutional goals comprise 50% of the final overall rating. Supervisors can determine the weight of each goal, but no single goal shall be weighted less than 5% of the final overall rating.

Career Development Plan: When there is a business need for an employee’s professional development, the supervisor will include a career development plan in the annual performance appraisal document.

Review and Signature: Once reviewed and signed by the supervisor and next-level supervisor, the employee shall review, sign and date the annual performance appraisal document. The employee’s signature confirms only that the employee has received the document. However, if an employee refuses to sign, then the supervisor shall note the employee’s refusal on the document. Electronic signatures are acceptable.

Guidelines for Performance Plan: Defines how well the employee needs to perform job duties on the position description in order to meet performance expectations.

Position Description: This is also the time to take a look at each of your employees’ position descriptions and make sure it is up to date with current duties and responsibilities.  To request your employees position description, reach out to the HR Manager.

Copies of signed performance plans will need to be sent to Jan Brock, Human Resources and Executive Manager, to keep in the personnel file by the provided deadline.

Additional information on developing the performance plan can be found here.

Additional Resources

Off-Cycle/Interim & Probationary Reviews

While the UNC System SHRA Performance Appraisal Policy does not require supervisors to conduct documented off-cycle reviews for all employees, there are specific scenarios that require an off-cycle documented review session to occur. Two of these off-cycle reviews include interim reviews and probationary/time-limited reviews for eligible employees. 

Off-Cycle/Interim reviews: Per policy, supervisors must meet with each employee periodically to review goals, assess progress, and as applicable, clarify or redefine expectations for the remainder of the performance cycle. Interim reviews are strongly encouraged for all employees to ensure that these discussions regarding employee performance have occurred. Interim performance reviews must be completed at the midpoint of the performance appraisal cycle for employees: 

  • who received a rating of a “1” or “2” on their last annual performance appraisal (for plan year ending 2017)
  • who have active disciplinary actions
  • whose supervisor finds it appropriate or necessary to perform an interim review
  • Interim reviews are to be completed on part 6 (Off-cycle Reviews) of the SHRA Performance Appraisal form. 

Copies of signed off-cycle/interim reviews will need to be sent to Jan Brock, Human Resources and Executive Manager, to keep in the personnel file by the provided deadline.

Probationary reviews: New SHRA employees within their first 12 months of employment (probationary and/or time-limited) are eligible for a quarterly review. The schedule for conducting quarterly off-cycle probationary reviews for each performance cycle is: 

  • July 
  • October 
  • January 
  • April 

Similar to interim reviews, probationary reviews are to be completed on part 6 (Off-cycle Reviews) of the SHRA Performance Appraisal form.  These quarterly reviews do not require individual or overall ratings, just brief written comments.

Copies of signed probationary reviews will need to be sent to Jan Brock, Human Resources and Executive Manager, to keep in the personnel file by the provided deadline.

Annual Evaluation Process

The UNC System SHRA Performance Appraisal Program places emphasis on both institutional goals and individual goals while streamlining the content of the performance plan, standardizing the categories for evaluation, increasing the accuracy and defensibility of performance ratings, and promoting effective communication between employees and supervisors. 

The purpose of the annual performance appraisal at the end of the cycle is to provide an opportunity for the supervisor to meet with each employee to review performance results and assign a final overall rating for the cycle. Supervisors shall not submit final overall ratings for employees until an annual performance appraisal, supported by performance documentation, has been completed in compliance with the SHRA Performance Appraisal Policy. 

Please note that the appraisal process should include: 

  • A private meeting with the employee to review the employee’s performance on institutional and individual goals for entire performance period. The meeting should allow enough time for both the supervisor and employee to have an opportunity for discussion.
  • Documenting performance strengths — as well as any issues or opportunities for improvement, and the corrective strategies needed to resolve any concerns — on the employee’s appraisal.
  • Discussion and documentation of the individual’s overall performance, including an overall rating that will take into account the combination of scores from the institutional and individual goals.

Minimum Evaluation Requirements: In order to receive an annual performance appraisal and final overall rating, an employee: (1) must be active as of March 31 in a SHRA position; and (2) must have worked under one or more annual performance appraisal documents for at least six months of the performance appraisal cycle. Appraisals must be completed by the provided department deadline.

Transfers or Changes in Supervisor: The receiving supervisor shall complete the employee’s annual performance appraisal at the end of the cycle and incorporate the transfer review information received from the releasing supervisor, as warranted. However, if an employee transfer or a change in supervisor occurs within the last 60 calendar days of the performance cycle, then the releasing/ending supervisor shall complete the annual performance appraisal for the employee and forward to the receiving supervisor. 

Probationary or Time-limited Employees: Probationary or time-limited employees hired after October 1 shall have an extended performance cycle and shall receive a first annual performance appraisal at the end of the next cycle. However, they should receive an off-cycle quarterly review in April. 

Separations: If an employee separates from State employment prior to the end of the performance appraisal cycle (March 31), then an annual performance appraisal shall not occur, but the supervisor may choose to complete an off-cycle performance review at the time of the separation. 

Rating Scale: the performance appraisal process employs a standard rating scale for all individual and institutional goals. The rating scale sets three levels of performance: 

  • 3 – Exceeding Expectations (for an employee with a total score 2.70 to 3.00)
  • 2 – Meeting Expectations (for an employee with a total score 1.70 to 2.69) 
  • 1 – Not Meeting Expectations (for an employee with a total score 1.00 to 1.69) 

Impact of Performance Deficiencies on Final Overall Rating: An employee who receives any rating of “Not Meeting Expectations” on a particular goal shall not receive a final overall rating of “Exceeding Expectations,” regardless of the results achieved on other goals. If an employee has an active disciplinary action that was issued during this performance appraisal cycle, then the employee shall receive a “Not Meeting Expectations” rating for the goal(s) cited in the action and shall not receive a final overall rating of “Exceeding Expectations,” regardless of the results achieved on other goals. The disciplinary action shall be referenced in the annual performance appraisal document. 

Note: If the employee receives both a rating of “Meeting Expectations” for the goal(s) cited in an active disciplinary action and receives a rating of “Meeting Expectations” on the final overall rating, then the disciplinary action shall become inactive.

Review and Signature: Once reviewed and signed by the supervisor and next-level supervisor, the employee shall review, sign and date the annual performance appraisal document. The employee’s signature confirms only that the employee has received the document. However, if an employee refuses to sign, then the supervisor shall note the employee’s refusal on the document. Electronic signatures are acceptable. 

Additional Resources

Final Overall Rating Calculations Worksheet (Excel Doc)

Supervisor Checklist (PDF Fillable)

Copies of signed annual evaluations will need to be sent to Shannon Plummer-White, Human Resources Manager, to keep in the personnel file by the provided deadline.