Annual Appraisals

The aim of the Staff Performance – Annual Appraisal is to provide you with the opportunity to review your progress over the previous year, agree objectives for the forthcoming year and identify learning and Development (L&D) requirements with your manager.

The annual appraisal will now be recorded online using the Ceri system. You can complete your pages via self-service. This way, information relating to employment, training, skills etc. will be automatically populated and saved.


Completing the Appraisal

The employee is responsible for preparing for the appraisal meeting by ensuring they are familiar with the objectives identified in the previous appraisal period, and have given through consideration to potential objectives for the coming period and any necessary training and development which may be relevant.

The appraisal form will be completed by the employee’s line-manager during the appraisal meeting.  In preparing for the meeting employees should familiarise themselves with their full Learning & Development profile on their Ceri self-service account, which includes details of the objectives from the previous appraisal period. This is also an important opportunity for employees to check all aspects of the information held of their self-service account to ensure the information is both accurate and up-to-date.

Note: If you are new to the organisation, or if you are completing the appraisal review via Ceri for the first time the section relating to the previous year’s objectives will be empty.

For a step by step guide on how to complete the form on Self Service, please find more information on the Knowledge Base.


Time Line

The appraisal period will run from 1 April to 31 March each year, and should be submitted by 31 May. You will be reminded to complete the appraisal process each year.

If you are a new starter, the appraisal process will commence on 1 April following the successful completion of the corporate induction process and probationary period.


The Meeting

Your manager will schedule a meeting, allowing adequate time, through an appropriate medium  that is accessible and without interruption. This is a one to one meeting; however, you may request a translator or British Sign Language interpreter to be present to support the process. Please discuss this with your line manager in advance of the meeting, if required.

During your appraisal meeting, the line manager will review your progress, discuss your performance, and consider objectives for the forthcoming year, taking into consideration any recommendations made by you. Please note, however, that the manager has the final say with regards to the objectives set. You will also have an opportunity to discuss any health and well-being concerns that you may have, which could impact on your ability to achieve your objectives. Please note that if you do have any concerns regarding your health and wellbeing, you should speak to your line-manager immediately, and not wait for the annual review meeting. Confidential information regarding your health and wellbeing will not be recorded on the Ceri appraisal form.

Once your manager has completed the appraisal form during your meeting, you will be able to review the completed form through Ceri self-service.


Objective progress

There is no formal mid-year review scheduled within this procedure, however, line-managers are required to ensure that they are familiar with the progress of their employees towards the objectives to ensure any obstacles or barriers are addressed in a timely fashion. Additional meetings as part of the process can be scheduled at the request of the line-manager or the employee to discuss performance, especially if there are any concerns, or any additional support required.

The employee can also access their review at any time, providing additional comments e.g. objective completed early.


Learning and Development Needs

Learning and development can include work experience, shadowing colleagues, accessing webinars, participating in professional networks, teamwork and group activity and self-development as well as formal training activities, and should be relevant to the employee’s current position. For agreed learning and development objectives, the employee and the line manager should work together to identify both internal and external opportunities.

Details of L&D events can be found on Ceri Self Service, select Learning & Development, and click “Search Courses”. You can refine your search by either name, date or availability. If a course is unavailable, you can add yourself onto the waiting list, and you’ll be notified when the next course becomes available.

Please note that each individual Service is responsible for their training budget, therefore line-managers should ensure that they have Corporate Lead Officer approval.

The line-manager should review the training courses available on a regular basis, as identified training needs may be added to future training schedules. HR will review the appraisal review data annually to identify generic corporate training needs for the following year.


Additional Information

Learning and Development

What do I do if the employee didn’t attend the training identified at the beginning of the previous year?
This should be discussed with the employee. There may be a reasonable explanation for this and you may wish to consider transferring the training to the forthcoming year. If a reasonable explanation is not forthcoming the importance of the training should be explained and the requirement to engage in the training should be emphasised as a mandatory requirement of the role.

The nature of the role requires that the employee achieves a qualification or skill within a certain period of time, however, this has not been achieved. What should I do?
If the employee has failed to meet a contractual learning or skill requirement, please discuss the reason for this. There may be an underlying issue or reasonable explanation for this. If a reasonable explanation is not forthcoming please contact the HR team for further advice on next steps.

Multiple Posts and Matrix Management

An Employee has multiple posts, will they need more than one appraisal?
Where employees are employed on more than one contract, with different roles, or separate teams, an appraisal will be required for each post with relevant objectives agreed for each.

An Employee has more than one Manager, who conducts the appraisal?
Where staff are matrix managed, the nominated line-manager will conduct the appraisal review. However, the line-manager may discuss objectives, and request feedback from another relevant manager to be included in the appraisal record

Agreeing the Objectives

What happens if the line manager and employee cannot agree on the objectives?
If objectives or monitoring procedures cannot be jointly agreed, the line manager has the final decision. The employee can add comments to the record at the end of the process. All attempts should be made to resolve any differences informally during the meeting. HR can provided further support if needed to find an acceptable way forward however more formal paths are available to the employee through the Grievance Policy in the event that the individual continues to feel aggrieved.

Who can see my Appraisal, and how will it be used?
The appraisal form can be viewed by the employee, their line manager, and the immediate line manager above that.

Human Resources will receive reports which will assist in identifying:
• Service-wide training needs;
• Service areas where the percentage number of appraisals completed are low;
• Service areas or identifiable groups where there may be concern that the objective completions are low.

What if I want to record additional information?
Employees may wish to include comments relating to exceptional achievements which were not included within the initial objectives set for the year. This should be noted in the final comment section at the end of the appraisal document.

Can I amend the start or the end date for an objective?
The employee or the line-manager can record that an objective has been completed earlier than the original set date by noting this in the objective progress comments box.

How do I record progress throughout the year?
Both employees and line-managers will be able to view the document at any time during the year and add progress comments which will be visible when reviewing objectives at the end of the year.

What if the employee can’t access the Appraisal via Self Service?
In exceptional circumstances, the employee may request a paper version of the form. In such circumstances, the line-manager should access Ceri Self-Service to ensure that all relevant information is taken into consideration and to update the information accordingly. The system allows the manager to print the form upon completion, to provide to any employee.

Where can I access the job descriptions for my employees?
If the position has been advertised via Ceri since June 2016, and if you uploaded the job description via ‘Attach Business Case’, you will be able to access this via Ceri People Manager. Alternatively, if the job description was sent to HR for Job Evaluation Team, we may be able to provide you with a copy.

If an employee is issued with a temporary contract, or is new to the Council, should they be included in the annual appraisal?
All appointees will be issued with a 6-month Corporate Induction Programme on the first day of employment. At the end of this programme, the employee will receive a review by their line manager, and objectives will be set which normally extends to the beginning of their first annual appraisal on 1 April. If the temporary contract does not extend to this date, this should be reflected in the period noted against the objectives. However, if it is anticipated that the contract will be extended beyond this date, this should be taken into consideration and processed accordingly.

If an employee is on maternity leave or some other form of extended leave,  should they be included in the annual appraisal?

If the individual is absent for the duration of the appraisal period they should not be required to participate in the process. Please contact HR who can make the necessary adjustments in the individual’s record to ensure this does not appear as an outstanding requirement. If the individual is present for a portion of the appraisal period the objectives and timeline should be adjusted to reflect this.

If an employee is on secondment from their substantive role should they be included in the annual appraisal?

The individual will still be required to participate in the appraisal process but it will be the responsibility of the new line-manager to complete the appraisal process with that individual.

Please contact HR to make the necessary adjustments in the individual’s record to ensure the appraisal requirement is logged against the correct post.

If the individual is present in both their seconded and their substantive post for a portion of the appraisal period the objectives and timeline should be adjusted to reflect this by the respective line-managers.