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Getting the most from appraisals

Appraisals have long been recognised as an important process which helps both organisations and individuals achieve their goals.  Here are some benefits of having appraisals and some tips on what to do before, during and after your appraisal.

Why have appraisals?

This process of looking back, seeing what can be learnt and then planning what to do next has many benefits, including:

  • A clear idea of what is expected of you
  • Helpful feedback which gives you a chance to develop and perform to your best
  • An understanding of how your objectives fit in with the organisation as a whole
  • An opportunity to give feedback to your manager
  • Improved communication

What do I need to do?


  • Make sure you understand your appraisal system
  • Review your last appraisal record
  • If your organisation has pre-appraisal questionnaire/ checklist, work through it  

If not, think about: 

  • How can you show that you have been doing a good job over the last year?  It might seem like stating the obvious but your manager might not be aware of all of your achievements
  • What hasn't gone so well and how have you learnt from these experiences?
  • What would you like to achieve over the next 12 months and how does this fit in with your organisation’s business plan
  • What help and resources will you need to achieve these objectives?
  • What new skills would you like to develop and how can you learn these?


  • Participate! Remember this is your opportunity to talk about  your career and achievements
  • Listen to feedback. If the feedback seems unfair, or not a true reflection of your performance, ask for examples to clarify things
  • Try not to be defensive about feedback, but respond in a constructive way – nobody gets everything right all the time
  • Don’t feel embarrassed to talk about yourself in a positive way.  It’s part of the appraisal process
  • When discussing things which haven’t gone so well, focus on how you will use what you’ve learnt to improve things next time


  • Incorporate your objectives into work/project plans
  • Follow-up training opportunities
  • Do what you've agreed
  • Remind your manager to do what they’ve agreed!
  • Review your progress against objectives every 3 months
  • Change objectives when necessary, for example when there is a change in budget or other resources
  • Use any new skills you learn as soon as possible to make best use of training

How can we help?

Alpha Training offers courses to help both appraisers and appraisees.  We can help you to develop the skills you need to get the most from the appraisal process.  Our appraisal training is tailor-made; using your organisations appraisal system.  

To discuss your appraisal training needs call us now on 020 8658 6994 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.