Research Proposal: 7
Performance measurement takes different forms. It can be measuredthrough determining the talent and development needs of staff asalready discussed in the proposal. In addition, it can be achieved byreceiving different opinions from those internal and external to theorganization (Brett & Atwater, 2001). It is not easy to measurethe effectiveness of an organization. The 360-Degree feedbackassessment tool progresses to be appropriate when measuring UnitedWay of Oconee’s success. In specific needs assessment surveys areissued to leadership donors as well as all staff. Through feedbackfrom the needs assessment surveys, it becomes possible to understandthe strengths and weaknesses of the organization.
The donors are very important to the organization. Without donors itwould be impossible for United Way of Oconee County to get the neededfunds. Donors donate money to the organization to be used in fundingprojects. They need to be sure that their money is put into good use,and hence act as an important determiner in measuring theorganization’s effectiveness. The leadership donors are part of theorganization. However, they are not involved in the internaloperations of United Way of Oconee County. Nevertheless, they play avery important role and are the most suitable individuals inmeasuring the organization’s success. In order to measure thesuccess, needs assessment surveys are given to donors. A number ofsteps must be followed.
The first step to implementing the 360-degree feedback involvesinforming the participants about the assessment (Luthans &Peterson, 2003). Because donors are not within the organization, theyhave to be reached out to in advance, informed about the assessmentand how their feedback will be used. After the leadership donors havebeen informed about the needs assessment surveys. The next stepinvolves conducting the surveys. The objective is to get as muchfeedback as possible about the organization. The feedback will thenbe rated to identify the weaknesses and strong points of United Wayof Oconee County. Hence, questionnaires will be used as the360-degree feedback instrument. The questionnaires will be sent tothe leadership donors and they will be given ample time to fill them.Because many of the donors may be engaged in other activities, theywill be given a one month timeline to fill the questionnaires. It isanticipated that within this time, the donors will have effectivelyfilled all the questions.
The questionnaires will comprise of questions concerning how thedonors can rate the organization in terms of meeting its objectives,what they think the organization is doing perfectly and areas theythink need improvement among other questions. After issuing thedonors with the questionnaires, follow up will be conducted to ensurethat they understand what feedback is expected from them. Once thedonors have filled the questionnaires, they will be requested to sendthem back to the organization. Because the assessment surveys areconducted in paper format, it is important to ensure confidentialityof the reports. Once received, the organization should select anexternal rater to avoid any biases or elimination of importantinformation from the donor’s feedback.
External raters can be in the form of hiring a consulting firm thatreviews the feedback and tabulates the results to produce 360-degreefeedback (DeNisi & Griffin, 2001). The raters carefully reviewall the comments and suggestions that are made by the leadershipdonors. They then organize the information to ensure that it becomesmeaningful to the organization. For instance, they can organize theinformation to indicate if most of the donors view the organizationas being effective or not. That is, in terms of whether the donorssuppose the organization is successfully using the funds that theyreceive by meeting all organization goals.
There are advantages of measuring the success of United Way of OconeeCounty through needs assessment surveys on leadership donors. Theorganization is able to gather different perspectives from what theyalready know. The donors act as external raters of the organization.They are in a position to rate the organization depending on how itaddresses the issues and needs of the local community. Since thedonors are external to the environment, another advantage is thattheir feedback is not affected by issues such as job appraisal thatarise when assessing an organizations success based on needsassessment of staff. Donors are straightforward on what they thinkneeds to change. In addition, their assessment of the organizationassists in building the brand. For instance, supposing that thedonors, through the needs assessment survey, realize that theorganization effectively uses funds to meet community needs, thenthey are more compelled to continue making donations to United Way ofOconee County.
Measuring the success of an organization is also possible throughneeds assessment surveys on staff. Workers are internal to theorganization and are an important resource in ensuring its success.The needs of the workers make it possible to understand whether theorganization runs its operations successfully (Fleenor& Prince, 1997). The current work environment necessitatesthat workers are skilled in the performance of difficult tasks ineffective, safe and cost-efficient ways. Training, which is a toolfor improving performance, is required when personnel fail to meetperformance standards according to the anticipated level. Needsassessment surveys act as a crucial element of needs in organizationdevelopment as well as training. The surveys act as the mirror of theneeds in the organization and can be employed in measuring successbased on an array of issues that affect performance.
Similar to leadership donors, staff need to be informed about theneeds assessment surveys prior to their implementation. The surveystargets employees from different levels of the organization. Thus,they need to be briefed on why the assessments are being conducted.This ensures that they cooperate and are willing to provide theneeded feedback. Also, staff must be enlightened on how the surveyswill be conducted. Once the workers have been informed, the needsassessment surveys are implemented. The objective is to measureorganizational success. It is important to get accurate and correctinformation from all participants. Confidentiality will be animportant component all through when conducting the surveys. Workersare more likely to give feedback when they feel that the informationwill not have a negative impact on theirs or their peers bonus orpossibility for promotion.
Raters act in response to an array of standardized questionsassessing the performance of the organization. This is possiblethrough using computerized systems to input feedback or using paperformat to record feedback (Alexander, 2006). In this case, collectingfeedback from personnel is more effective when using computerizedsystems. This is because it eases the process of conductingassessment surveys. In addition, it enhances effectiveness ascompared to using questionnaires. A computerized system at mostrequires the staff to provide direct responses to questions. Forinstance, a question may be “Do you think that United Way of OconeeCounty is successful?” The employee is then expected to choose aresponse from given choices, like “yes, no”. Because workers arealso expected to complete their tasks in the organization, thecomputerized system acts as a fast way of providing feedback.
After feedback has been obtained from the employees, it is thenrated. The feedback from different sources is gathered and amassed ina report for the organization. The feedback is subdivided into asequence of ratings as well as scores using a numerical scale(Alexander, 2006). The scale depicts areas that require improvementand strengths in the organization. It is apparent that implementingthe needs assessment surveys on staff, makes it possible to gatherinformation that helps in determining organizational areas thatrequire development. As a result, United Way of Oconee County is ableto rate their success. For instance, if many employees feel that aspecific area of management needs to change, it means that managementhas not been effective. Therefore, it is not possible to state thatthe organization has been successful. Also, if many employees depicta need for more training in performing their tasks, it can only meanthat they have been ineffectively completing their tasks at UnitedWay of Oconee County, which in turn reduces its success.
The advantages of conducting needs assessment surveys on staff isthat it becomes possible for the organization to gain perspective onareas they have been performing well and on those they lag behind. Inconclusion, 360-degree feedback makes it possible for theorganization to get feedback on their success from a well-roundedgroup of people (Ward,1999).
Alexander, D. M. (2006). How do 360-degree performance reviews affectemployee attitudes, effectiveness and performance? Schmidt LaborResearch Center Seminar Research Series, 1-11.
Brett, J. F & Atwater, L. E. (2001). 360-feedback: Accuracyreactions, and perceptions of usefulness. Journal of AppliedPsychology, 86, 930-942.
DeNisi, S. A & Griffin, R. W. (2001). Human resourcemanagement. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
Fleenor, J. W & Prince, J. M.(1997). Using360-degree feedback in organizations: An annotatedbibliography.Greensboro, NC: Center for Creative Leadership.
Luthans, F & Peterson, S. (2003). 360-Degree feedback withsystematic coaching: Empirical analysis suggests a winningcombination. Human Resource Management, 42(3).
Ward, P., & Institute ofPersonnel and Development. (1999). 360-degreefeedback. London: Instituteof Personnel and Development.