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How to implement 360 in your organisation

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23rd Apr 2014
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In keeping with our theme of the month, Sophie Eagan simplifies the 360 process and its benefits for us.

Most of us recognise that in order for our business to get ahead we need to listen to and act on feedback. Whether this is feedback given by our customers or the feedback that we give to the people who work around us, it is all vital and needs to be worked towards. The 360 method - based around providing a 360 degree of feedback - is a feedback method that works for many people. This means looking at everything, how it can be worked towards, the impact it has on your business and much more. If this sounds like something that you would like to implement into your business then it stands to reason you are going to want this to be as smooth as possible. Here's how you can make that happen.

Questions are important

When you are asking questions for people that are providing the feedback make sure that they are tailor made to their needs. For example you would probably ask someone in Level 1 management for very different feedback than you would of a customer. You cannot just ask the same questions across the board because the feedback will not be as accurate as you need it to be. Make sure you research what sort of questions work well so that you can get the most effective answers.

Don't rush

Implementing any new system to your workplace will take time and incorporating 360 degree reviews will be no different. Whatever type of performance management system you have you need to recognise that 360 will change the way this works and that this will take time to get right. The best thing you can do is implement this new system slowly - that way you can monitor how it works and your employees are not put off by being bombarded with too much new and complicated information at once.

Look at how to collect data

You need to look at how you are going to collect data, especially from people that operate outside of your organisation - for example your customers. Most of the time the easiest route is to take on a third party survey company and to get them to handle a survey service for you online. That way you get to handle large amounts of data quickly and easily and your customers don't have to spend too much time filling out questions, because you have made their life as easy as possible for them.

Make things confidential

The 360 degrees of feedback works because people feel that they can be open and honest in the feedback that they are given. You need to make sure that you reassure people that their responses and feedback will be anonymous and that you follow through on this. You don't want employees afraid to give honest feedback for fear of the repercussions, which will often happen if you don't give enough reassurance. Instead you need to make sure that the feedback they give is anonymous and stays that way - honest feedback is always the best way to get feedback that you can act on.

Mostly the implementation of 360 into your organisation isn't very different to other new systems you could introduce to your organisation. A big part of it is making sure that you take your time and do things correctly. If you rush this then it simply will not work. The good news is that once the 360 system is in place your business will benefit massively, so taking steps to do this correctly is well with the time you'll invest.

Sophie Eagan is a writer for Appraisal360. She believes that not only will 360 help improve the company but also improve personal targets of people and get them to reach their goals a lot easier. For more information you can see Appraisal360.co.uk

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