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Annual review

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Question: It's "annual review" time in our office.  Each year, my supervisor asks me to write my own review and then we discuss it before he writes the final version.  Since I know my job so well, I work independently and require no supervision.  One of the questions on the evaluation form asks for "outstanding accomplishment(s) since the last review."  I've been working at the same job for 27 years and am running out of adjectives to describe how great a job I do.  There's nothing "new" to report and I'm concerned that I won't get the raise I think I deserve.  How do you handle your annual evaluation without repeating the same things year after year?  -- Anonymous


I would ask your supervisor for objectives for you to meet, then at year end show him/her how well you met those objectives. It is up to the supervisor to direct the employees, and if they are not doing that with clearly defined objectives, then the supervisor is not doing their job.

If you are in a clerical position where your job is consistient during the year, the I would understand the same adjectives being used year after year.

Your consistency, loyalty, and reliability are your outstanding accomplishments. Employers are eager to have employees with just ONE of those traits. You exhibit all three values and should be commended on that basis.

Are you certain that you haven't had any "accomplishments" in the past year? Perhaps, you have overlooked something. It may be a good idea to keep a weekly/monthly log of the things that you do so you have something to refer to during review time. Have you been brushing up on your skills by taking classes? You could note that or take that into account in the future.

One thing that I had once done was to get my own salary report online. It actually compares shows what you should make based on your experience, education, years of service, size of the company and so forth. I used that information as well as some salary info I found in the classifieds and the dept of labor. That way you have a benchmark about where you should be - and it shows your employer your value. Hope that this helps! Good luck.

While I agree with all the other comments, the one I found most helpful was the log I keep each month. If I handled a particular project extremely well or finished well ahead of schedule, negotiated a better contract or price for a meeting or materials, made a good catch and avoided a potential problem or just went the extra mile in a crunch, I note it in a log. It's amazing how you forget these little milestones throughtout the year and the log comes in handy at review time and I have concrete examples of my "accomplishments" for the year. Think back and remember something you were particularly proud of!

I would suggest a response that says something like: I continue to try and excel in all my areas of responsibility as I believe I have over many years. This past year has been no different than other past years in terms of my commitment to maintain excellence in the work place and sincerely hope it is recognized in my annual review.

I, too, would suggest you keep your own file that reminds you of things you have accomplished throughout the year and then when you do your own self-evaluation, you will be able to site specifics rather than being so general, henceforth, leading to trying to make up new adjectives for language purposes only. I worked at the same job for 26 years and this helped me alot. It might not help this year, but I am sure it will for next year.

I have a simple matrix that I update on a regular basis. It includes my responsibilites to each manager/department, leadership roles I have taken on, accomplishments to date, Goals/Continued Deveopment (Leadership Goals, Personal/Professional Development Goals, Administrative Support Goals), Future State (ideas for improvement in my position/company), and Selected Reading Materials. Since I keep this updated on a regular basis, it helps me to remember my accomplishments come review time. I can provide a copy to you if you're interested.

I agree with keeping a log. Also, if you've taken any classes or seminars that shows how committed you are to professional development. Are you involved in any professional organizations? Have you volunteered to assist someone on a project? Have you read a book geared to your profession. I had a book I was reading "How to Partner with Your Boss", as an executive assistant to a VP he was impressed that I would take time to read a book that would ultimately help me at work. These are all things that can help you at your evaluation. If you haven't done any of these things, then I think this is an excellent time to make some suggestions. If there's a seminar or class you want to take you should mention it.

I too am asked to rate my own performance each year. In the past couple years I have kept a hard copy and electronic folder that includes any complimentary emails I receive throughtout the year, copies of any documents/projects I completed outside my normal responsibilities, as well as documentation of any errors/mistakes I've made throughout the year, along with anything else that relates to my performance. When it's review time, I pull my folder and have easy access to everything I've worked on for the year. It makes it simple and easy to document outstanding performance, as well as set goals for the coming year to identify areas of needed improvement. This process has assisted me in getting much more fair reviews, since my boss has many others she has to rate at the same time, and my documentation helps her "remember" the above and beyond items I've worked on.

I also find it helpful to note various statistics for the year. For example, the number of expense reports I reviewed for receipts and adherence to company policy, the total amount of department expenses I was able to identify as incorrect and in need of rebilling, the number of employee transfers into our department (retirements, transfers out, interoffice moves), etc.

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