Employee Ranking System (ERS) – Products and Technology
 

What is an employee ranking?

It’s an ordered list of employees from “most valuable” to “least valuable” derived out of the ERS (Employee-Ranking System)

What’s the purpose of an employee ranking?

It provides a logical and consistent framework for employee advancement, recognition, and rewards.  It can unearth and expose significant inequities.  If used on an on-going basis, it can provide valuable insight into employee performance and development trends.

How is “value” defined?

Different definitions make sense in different organizations.  We will consider three major dimensions – competence, the level of contribution, and value to the business.  In other words, how skilled the employees at what they do, how productive are they at what they do, and how irreplaceable are their specific skills or knowledge.  For each dimension, we will consider both “performance to date” as well as the “potential for the future”.  Since performance to date is less ambiguous than future potential, we will give it greater weight. Potentially this would help you to identify core members of your

What process will we use?

We’ll list all employees in a spreadsheet with some basic demographic information, their previous ladder evaluations, and the staff member they report to.  For each of your employees, you will rate them from 1-4 (4 being highest) in the three dimensions described above. You will leverage the details mentioned in this word document below in order to identify rating 1 to 4.  You’ll do that once for past performance and once for future potential for these three areas.  We will then total the numbers and ladder all engineering employees together, assigning a 70% weighting to demonstrated performance and a 30% weighting to future potential. You can download the spreadsheet by clicking on below link

ERS – Products and Technology Ladder

How should I calibrate my evaluations?

Keep in mind that the evaluations are independent of job level and experience.  The idea is to identify “most valuable” to “least valuable” That is, it is perfectly reasonable and generally expected for junior employees to get lower scores than more senior employees.  In fact, when that doesn’t happen, that’s a sign of either a high flying junior employee or an under-performing senior employee.  In addition, you can look at previous years’ rankings to get a sense of overall calibration.  Then, use the supplementary guidance in the sections below.

How precise will all this be?

Don’t worry too much about the precision of the numbers.  Our goal is to get relative ranking right.  The numbers give us a big head start in aligning our reference points and in creating a single merged list for the whole organization.  Once we have a consolidated list, the leadership team can ensure right people are in the right place.

Any other helpful instructions?

  • Please be careful not to break any of the formulas in the spreadsheet.
  • If you see errors in any cell, please highlight the cell and make the appropriate correction.
  • For the Rating column, enter your best estimate of the numeric performance rating (from 1-5) that the employee will receive this year or whatever your rating system is.
  • For the Promotion and the Performance Improvement Plan columns, enter a “Y” if you believe the employee should be on one of these tracks for the current year. Otherwise, you can leave the column blank.

The ranking would be derived from three core factors

  1. 1. Competence
  2. 2. Contribution
  3. 3. Value to business

Competence

Areas to consider:

  • – Breadth and depth of knowledge and skills
  • – Leadership and innovation, applied to people, processes, and projects
  • – Problem-solving ability
  • – Technical, business, communication, interpersonal skills

Rating 4:
Has mastered all required skills. Demonstrates strong leadership in one or more areas (e.g., technical, project management, process, etc.).  Consistently works to leverage skills for team and larger organization success.

Rating 3:    
Often operates above the norm, with advanced skills in some areas. Often expends extra effort to help meet goals. Has demonstrated leadership in one or more areas.

Rating 2:   
Has all basic skills for job category and uses them effectively to meet project goals.

Rating 1:   
Needs additional skills development to meet job requirements and to attain project goals. May demonstrate inconsistent achievement of task objectives and project goals.

Contribution

Areas to consider:

  • -Ability to meet commitments
  • – Overall productivity and volume of output
  • – Early communication of problems and contribution to workarounds that meets business goals
  • – Versatility – willingness and ability to adapt to new tasks
  • – Teamwork – willingness and ability to help others
  • – Leadership skills such as architecture, project management, change management, communication, and mentoring
  • – Ability to motivate others, manage self, and demonstrate initiative.

Rating 4:  
Someone who has a lot of initiative, is a  leader across the organization, and has outstanding productivity.

Rating 3:   
Someone who excels in 1 or 2 of these dimensions but not all 3.

Rating 2:   
Someone who delivers what is expected (i.e. does not take much initiative to do more), is a team player but not a leader, and has productivity as expected.

Rating 1:    
Someone who is below expectations in one or more of these dimensions.

Value to the Business

Areas to consider:

  • – Knowledge and skills as mapped to needs of the business
  • – Extra points here for unique skills we need

Rating 4:    
A critical person on a high profile project, creating a vision or blueprint for the project or accomplishing critical business objectives.  Without this person, current and future objectives would not be accomplished.

Rating 3:  
A core person on a high profile project.  Without this person, current and future objectives would be impaired.

Rating 2: 
Could be replaced without significant negative impact to the business.

Rating 1:     
The negative impact to the business. Drains resources and causes objectives not to be accomplished.

 

SMART Goals – You really have to be smart in setting your goals
 

“Know what you want to do, hold the thought firmly, and do every day what should be done, and every sunset will see you that much nearer to your goal.”
Elbert Hubbard

GOAL – A goal is a description of a condition one wishes to achieve. It is the desired result or possible outcome that a person or a system envisions and commits to achieve.

If there is no goal, there is no direction. “Being happy” is not a goal because it does not describe the specific condition.  Instead, “I would travel to Europe this year” is a goal.

The GOAL should be SMART. This acronym extends to Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. This is indeed very powerful tool while hardly used.

S – Specific
If you don’t express your goal in specific terms, it is very difficult to achieve. Moreover, you will never know whether you have achieved your goal or not.

Examples
Ambiguous/Vague  – I want to lose weight.
Specific – I want to lose 5 kg in next 90 days.

M – Measurable/Meaningful
You must have concrete criteria to achieve your goals.  You should be able to measure your result or outcome to ensure you are on track. The goal will be really meaningful when you attach motivation to it.

A – Achievable/Attainable
Goals should be motivating and challenging while do ensure that it’s not virtually impossible.  The moment you define your goals and start working on them, it starts coming closer. Things get easier.  Attainable doesn’t mean choosing very simple goals.  The tough goals stimulate you to do more and expand your comfort zone.

R – Realistic/Relevant
The goals which are not realistic, you are highly unlikely to achieve them. Although nothing is impossible but the exceptions are rare.  For instance, if you decide to go for ACP certification with little agile knowledge, assuming you will read 5 books in 5 days, the chances are fat that you will have a success.

T – Timely/Timebound
It is critical to specify a timeline for achieving your goals. If the goal is for the long term, break them down into smaller multiple goals to hit your ultimate goal. This would keep you motivated throughout the journey. For instance, you want to rank number one blogging site for Agile in 24 months, you can target to get into first 1000 in 6 months, 100 in a year, 10 in 1.5 years and eventually number one in 2 years.

Guidelines

  1. Give a deep thought, identify your goals, discuss if needed.
  2. Write them down clearly.
  3. Review them regularly.
  4. Track your progress.
  5. Update your goals as required.
  6. Take the complete ownership of your goals.
  7. Short term goals need to be more realistic. The long term should be broken down into multiple short term goals.

The “Law of Attraction” principle works very well with your goals. If you constantly keep looking at your goals every day, then the chances of achieving them become very high. According to “Law of attraction”, if you can convince yourself of something, the whole world support you to achieve that.  The self-motivation/self-realization/self-acceptance of accomplishing a goal is more important than putting an effort has been proven many times.

The people will treat you the way you treat yourself.  If you think, you would get promoted and you convince yourself that it would happen, it is very likely that it will happen. In order to convince yourself, you should set SMART goals. This will be one of the inputs for “Law of Attraction” to work. You must have noticed that if you want something desperately and constantly focusing on that, you will just get it. In the process of desperation, you actually work on convincing yourself.