Employee performance data provides valuable insight into how an employee is doing in their role at any given time. However, the phrase itself is an umbrella term. Various metrics provide different insight into how an employee is performing in their position, such as views in quality, quantity, and efficiency.

Collecting and analyzing this data with an employee helps ensure they work and operate in the way the company expects. This allows a company to give feedback and constructive criticism about an employee’s performance that is backed by data. Having this information on file also allows a company to look back at past months or years and determine if their employees are making the positive progress they should be at the company.

Each company tracks and provides feedback for an employee’s individual performance in a different way, based on what works best with their structure. Companies can choose between providing monthly, quarterly, or annual reviews, and also determine whether these performance reviews are completed by a direct manager, a human resources team, or another party. Regardless of these decisions, the following information will provide guidance and clarity on which employee metrics to track.

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Why is employee performance data important?

As mentioned above, employee performance data is important to track because it provides a measurable way to see how employees are working in their current position at a given time. With this data, companies can further support employee growth and development by providing data-driven feedback and encouragement.

Feedback loop

Giving feedback guarantees that employees are routinely in contact with their managers. This setup supports regular communication and also acts as an opportunity for managers to check on employees, specifically for signs of burnout. Additionally, when the employees perform to the best of their ability and in line with expectations, it helps ensure they are working to meet company goals.

Employee performance tracking helps both the employee and the company in this sense. However, there are even more benefits of employee performance tracking that we’ll get into next.


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Benefits of tracking employee performance metrics

The biggest benefit of tracking employee performance is that employees know exactly what is expected of them. With a clearer understanding of what to do, employees know when they cannot meet expectations and can vocalize any concerns to their managers comfortably. Ultimately, tracking the performance of employees cultivates a sense of accountability.

Additionally, analyzing this data can highlight areas of strength and weakness among an employee’s abilities. With this information, managers or HR teams can assist the employee with relevant resources or classes or intentionally assign future tasks around their strengths. This approach elevates the employee experience because employees can work on projects they know they can excel at and feel supported in the areas they want to grow. It also helps increase employee retention because they are more confident in and excited for their day-to-day work.

By having a measurable value of performance, employees will work harder to surpass their previous performance statistics intentionally. Performance statistics allow employees to compete with themselves in the journey for improved output. This also increases employee engagement because each worker is not concerned with outperforming their co-workers, but instead is striving to better their own outcomes.

How do you measure employee performance?

The three main types of metrics companies typically track are quality, quantity, and efficiency.

Quality can be tracked with client or customer surveys that provide feedback on areas like the likelihood of a customer to recommend this company to others. Quantity can be calculated by using a daily log sheet or task management platform. Efficiency can be monitored digitally or manually by combining the metrics gathered in the quality and quantity areas. Measuring employee performance has also become easier due to a range of task management softwares and online communication platforms that serve to store and analyze this data for companies.

Measuring employee performance

When is the best time to measure employee performance?

All companies should track employees’ performance metrics year-round to ensure adequate and consistent data for their employees. However, there are some crucial moments during which managers will want to look closely at performance data.

It’s up to the company to determine whether they will conduct annual performance reviews or opt for monthly or even weekly check-ins. Regardless, it is important to examine and critique the data frequently so managers and employees have a good idea of their capabilities and progress.

The performance appraisal process begins during employee onboarding. Managers must make the performance goals and company standards clear from the start so employees are prepared and in-the-loop. Since the expectations are set early on, employees know who and how to ask for help if they feel unsure. Additionally, knowing what’s expected of them prevents anyone from being blindsided when it comes time for the employee performance reviews.

In addition to these formal and scheduled reviews, it’s also essential to maintain frequent check-ins between employees and their managers. These unofficial chats help measure job satisfaction and allow managers to assist employees in reaching their goals. They also present a good time for small performance reviews instead of waiting for the next formal review.


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5 most important types of employee performance metrics

The five most useful key performance indicators, or KPIs, for tracking work performance center on goal-based metrics, efficiency & effectiveness metrics, quality of work metrics, personal growth metrics, and an employee’s training & continuing education. These five metrics provide a cohesive set of employee performance measurements that addresses all the essential areas. As stated above, these performance indicators must be collected year-round for a complete overview of employee work abilities.

Goal-based metrics

A goal-based metric clearly defines how a company achieves goals. This metric also translates whole company goals into specific goals tailored to an employee’s role, as goal-based metrics vary drastically based on an employee’s responsibilities. Goal-based metrics also follow the management technique of management by objective, where companies or employees set clear goals for a constrained time frame and meticulously monitor their progress in meeting them.

An example of a goal-based metric for a salesperson role is to close 20 sales per month. The salesperson can then figure out roughly how many customers they need to speak to to hit this goal. If about 1 in 5 customers purchase a product, they know they need to speak to about 100 people each month to reach their goal of 20 items sold. Managers must help employees properly set relevant goals for each team member.

One technique for goal-setting is to ensure each goal can be directly tied back to a business need, which allows employees to see how their work contributes to the success of the company. Another strategy is to develop SMART goals, that are specific, measurable, realistic, and time-bound for optimal results.

Efficiency & effectiveness metrics

Time management and task completion tracking can help measure efficiency and effectiveness. Time management would include task completion times and your employees’ ability to complete all their work. Managers can create different metrics for specific roles, but some measurable examples would be on-time attendance and on-time task performance. On the other hand, on-time task completions would look at if employees finish their responsibilities on or before due dates, and could be measured by evaluating the frequency of late projects.

Metrics pertaining to quality of work

Another important metric includes looking at the quality of work. One strategy for ensuring quality among employees’ work is having an assigned quality assurance (QA) team member oversee the work itself and spot errors. Another strategy is through a client/customer survey, like a net promoter score, that evaluates the satisfaction of key stakeholders.

A net promoter score is used to gauge customer experience and is calculated simply through a one-question market research survey. For example, businesses might prompt retail store or restaurant customers to complete a survey asking how likely they are to recommend the service or product to a friend. This measure of satisfaction reflects the quality of work an employee delivers because their role directly impacts the customer experience.

Having a long-term running log of an employee’s quality performance can be beneficial during performance evaluations to highlight employee-specific strengths and weaknesses. Managers can then use this information to highlight where a team member might need more assistance, guidance, or training.

Personal growth goals

Personal growth goals

In addition to having goals set by the company, it is instrumental that employees are encouraged to set their own goals. Having individual goals catered to personally identified areas of improvement creates initiative and shows employees that the company cares about their growth. Setting their own achievable goals and tracking them independently also shows the company an employee’s eagerness to learn and advance their career. Companies can also encourage the development of individual goal-setting by having company employee performance metrics that gauge it, such as the number of individual goals completed or time spent on personal goals.

Training & continuing education metrics

In addition to their typical work functions, many companies also offer training or continuing education opportunities.

Some examples of related metrics a company could evaluate include the number of training programs attended, how much content was retained from the training and how well the employee integrates the content into their work processes. This may require individual employees to take assessments before and after the training, and assess their process before and after to properly capture the full impact. Taking the extra time to do so is worth it for the company to help highlight the employees who are eager to better themselves and the organization.

Evaluating employee performance data

Each of the metrics discussed above helps evaluate employee performance. The five metrics listed all capture and measure a different aspect of an employee’s work ability and provide a cumulative and holistic view of their overall performance. However, this data must be collected throughout the year and reviewed by both the manager and employee during designated performance review times to provide consistent and actionable feedback.

Employee productivity software can assist in this metric collection process by automatically tracking, storing, and sorting performance data including activity rates, late or missed shifts, and more. Some tools even offer a way to compare productivity rates amongst similar roles or industries to give you clearer benchmarks. Employee productivity software can help automatically capture measurable data needed to properly assess and judge an employee’s performance.