Introduction to the Performance Management Cycle

Performance management is one of a manager's/supervisor's most important contributions to excellence at Berkeley. As a cycle that continues throughout the year, effective performance management aligns the efforts of managers/supervisors and employees with department and campus objectives, promotes consistency in performance reviews, and motivates all employees to perform at their best. The process should be conducted with fairness and transparency.

The campus administration, the manager/supervisor, and the employee form a partnership that ensures performance planning, coaching, development, and assessment.

  • University administrators are responsible for providing an effective and fair performance management system that encourages effective communication between employees and managers/supervisors and ensures that the supervisors have the skills and support to carry out performance management successfully.
  • Faculty and staff managers/supervisors are responsible for developing performance expectations with the participation of employees; communicating throughout the performance management cycle about employees’ objectives, performance, and development; recognizing successful performance and coaching for improved performance; and supporting employees to define the tools, resources, and training and development needed to carry out their duties successfully.
  • Employees at all levels are responsible for actively communicating with their managers/supervisors about performance, taking an active role in planning their development, being accountable for their actions, and continually striving for excellence in their performance in support of departmental and campus objectives.

The information in this section of our website will help you and your employees move through the three phases of the performance management cycle: Planning, Check-In, and Review. You’ll see that the important thing is to begin talking with employees about their objectives for the year, to provide coaching and feedback as you move through the year, and to keep communicating right through the performance review conversation at the end of the year.

We have provided an overview of the process, with useful tips, in the Performance Management Toolkit  (PDF), also available in the Tools & Resources section. There you can also find a suggested rating scale to use for the performance review. It’s important for employees to know what is expected of them, how their performance will be assessed, and what the rating terms mean.

You’ll also find a list of the resources available to help you implement this performance management cycle. Whether you prefer to attend a workshop, read materials on the web, or both, the resource list will point you in the right direction. Of course, the specialists in Employee Relations are available to help you with every phase in the cycle.