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Performance Reviews Performance Management

The Top 8 Benefits of Implementing 360 Review Software

April 23, 2024
7 min read

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This post about the benefits of 360 review software was first published in February 2022 and updated in April 2024.

In the U.S. labor market, the Great Resignation has given way to the “Big Stay” — just three million workers quit their jobs in January 2024, compared to 4.3 million in January 2022. We know that employees are less likely to quit when they’re engaged at work. But, experts say high job satisfaction is probably not the top reason why so many employees are staying.

"People are staying in their jobs for lack of alternatives, not because their current job is such a wonderfully satisfying fit," said Glassdoor Chief Economist Aaron Terrazas.

If your employees are less likely to quit, but your engagement rates aren’t trending up, they may be feeling the same way. That can lead to a decrease in performance and productivity, which harms your business no matter how high your retention rate. Not to mention, lack of engagement means they’re far more likely to seek out a new role in the near future.

Luckily, we know how to engage employees, and a period of low turnover gives you the perfect time to invest in those engagement strategies. A few things that are essential? Constructive feedback on their performance, learning opportunities, and relationships.

With 360 review software, you can combine all of these elements for the ultimate retention and engagement-driving strategy. Keep reading to explore the benefits of using employee feedback software to execute 360 reviews.

Enhance employee retention and engagement through meaningful feedback 🌟 Find out how 360 review software makes a difference:

Use 360 Reviews for Employee Development

You may be wondering, what is a 360 review? Also known as 360-degree reviews, they’re a performance management tool that utilizes peer feedback to help improve performance. 360 reviews collect employee performance feedback from multiple sources — colleagues they work with closely including managers, direct reports, and coworkers from other departments. Some companies even ask for feedback from customers who interact with employees regularly.

360 reviews are meant to give employees a more holistic view of their performance compared to traditional performance reviews. 360 reviews are typically part of a company’s larger employee review system and are not the only reviews given throughout the year.

360 Degree Feedback Reviews Graphic360-degree feedback is unique because it incorporates the perspectives of so many people. A typical feedback tool like an annual review usually involves only one person’s thoughts and opinions — the direct supervisor. Managers may sometimes receive upward feedback from their direct reports in addition to their own supervisors, but it’s rare for colleagues and customers to join in on a performance appraisal.

While those types of reviews have their own merit, 360 reviews serve a purpose, too. They’re engaging and motivating because instead of just the manager’s feedback, they include a variety of perspectives from an employee’s colleagues. With 360 reviews, employees hear from anywhere from four to eight individuals. They can compare feedback from many sources, which makes the review more credible and areas for improvement more apparent.

For example, if a manager hears from one direct report that their meetings tend to be unorganized, they may not take the feedback as seriously since it’s coming from just one person. On the other hand, if a colleague in another department, a customer, and a direct report all make similar comments in their reviews, it becomes clear that they need to address the issue.

In the same vein, a compliment about the manager’s ability to quickly problem-solve for disgruntled clients can be taken more seriously when it comes from several parts of the business. Insights like these enable you to best support every employee’s growth. This manager’s development plan might include leading the creation of employee training programs for client-facing roles.

As with all types of performance reviews, the ultimate goal of 360 reviews is to improve employee performance. The difference is that 360 reviews are most effective not when used to rate employees’ past performance but to hone their strengths and bolster their weaknesses.

How 360 Reviews Benefit Employees

  • Get feedback from more than just their direct supervisor
  • Helps employees gain awareness of their strengths and weaknesses
  • Fosters relationships and trust between colleagues
  • Grows bonds with customers
  • Contributes to an open, transparent work culture
  • Examines how tasks are accomplished, not just what was accomplished
  • Reduces the likelihood of biased feedback
  • Enables employees to grow their skills with a better understanding of how they need to improve

Top Benefits of Using a 360 Review Platform

Conducting 360 reviews is more complex than traditional reviews involving only one or two supervisors and one employee. Since they involve many team members and lots of feedback, enlisting a software solution has many benefits.

Here’s a closer look at eight of the top benefits of 360 review software.

1. Simplify tasks and save time for HR.

A huge benefit of using software in human resources is its ability to alleviate your team’s workload. This point is especially relevant with 360 reviews — they take longer than traditional reviews due to the number of participants.

A 360 review platform also simplifies coordinating the complicated review process. Software can handle it all, from selecting reviewers, generating reviews, sending reviews, and collecting responses to sending reminders about review completion, sharing the results, and analyzing collective data.

2. Set a standard and increase fairness.

360 review software helps increase fairness by ensuring that employees who are in similar or the same roles are being evaluated by the same standards. With software, your HR team won’t need to recreate reviews year after year or one by one. They can access standardized 360 reviews stored in the platform and be sure employees receive the correct review. This also makes it far easier to analyze review data and compare results.

3. Stay organized and on track.

It’s imperative to stay on track with performance reviews in order to give timely feedback. If feedback is given too late, you lose opportunities to aid employees’ development and address issues. Not to mention, the employee has been working without any corrective action, repeating mistakes that should have been addressed earlier.

Timely, continuous feedback is also beneficial to employee engagement: in fact, 43% of highly engaged employees receive feedback once a week.

Automate your feedback process, save time, and help your employees grow with 360 review software 📊💡See the top 8 benefits of using software for 360 reviews:

4. Easily reference past reviews.

It can be all too easy to underestimate employee progress when past reviews were done on paper or otherwise hard to access. On the other hand, 360 review software effortlessly stores complete records of every review sent through the system. After each review cycle, managers and their reports can compare previous years’ reviews to the most recent review — no guessing games required.

This comprehensive access to review history is hugely beneficial to employee development. They can more clearly see where their skills need refinement and gain confidence in their growth trajectory.

5. Develop employees with confidence.

Employees want opportunities to improve their performance and develop new skills. Without those, they’re willing to quit —a lack of career development consistently ranks among the most common reasons employees leave their jobs. What if you could give your people learning opportunities tailored to their strengths?

360-degree review software provides evidence of what employees are best at and how they’ve grown in their careers. With that evidence, they can feel confident about the next steps they take, and managers can provide the right support.

Maybe an employee received positive feedback about their leadership skills from many of their colleagues. Looking back over prior 360 reviews revealed similar praise. That tells both the employee and their manager that investing in leadership development opportunities will very likely be successful and help the employee grow into a leadership role.

Better employee reviews start with ClearCompany’s Performance Review Resources Megabundle. Get your bundle here.

6. Empower, engage, and retain employees.

Employees want feedback, and more of it helps to keep them engaged. 360 review software makes it easy to ensure that all employees receive 360 reviews and that they have a chance to provide feedback for another employee’s review. Asking employees for their feedback makes them feel empowered and increasing participation helps to keep employees engaged with the review process.

7. Increase review completion with mobile accessibility.

With a 360 review platform, reviews are easily accessible via mobile devices. Review participants can complete the review at their convenience. If it slips their mind, the software sends a quick reminder automatically. Mobile accessibility combined with auto-reminders makes it easier to complete 360 reviews on time.

8. Leverage 360 review data.

It’s the last on the list, but access to data insights may be one of the most important benefits of 360 review software. A robust software platform can generate insightful reports from responses, which, in turn, helps HR teams make data-informed decisions.

For example, maybe one employee tends to score another employee quite low consistently, while others submit higher scores for the employee. That’s an opportunity to improve the relationship between colleagues or address a performance issue that may have otherwise gone unnoticed.

You can make your next performance review cycle the best one yet with ClearCompany Performance Management. Help employees hone their skills and gain deep insight into how they’re doing for targeted performance improvement and career development. Conduct regular reviews, simplify review cycle management, check in often, and support their growth to build trust, engage, and retain your employees.

Ready to help your employees realize their full potential? Try out a 360 review platform like ClearCompany. Get started today with a demo of ClearCompany’s Performance Management platform, including 360 Reviews, with our experts.

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