HR Glossary for HR Professionals

Glossary of the most common HR terms and acronyms to assist professionals navigating the ever-growing and ever-changing world of HR terminology.

Performance Review

What is a Performance Review?

A performance review is a formal assessment in which managers evaluate a direct reports work performance, identify strengths and weaknesses together, offer mutual feedback, and set goals for future performance. 


Employee performance reviews tend to focus on the employee expectations of merit increase and bonuses, as well as clarifying expectations, setting objectives, identifying goals, providing feedback, and reviewing areas for performance improvement.


Employers need to note that these employee reviews have a huge impact on how satisfied, motivated, and productive their employees are. If avoided, you are risking the potential for decreased employee morale, the credibility of management, decreased retention, and your organization’s overall effectiveness.

Performance Review Goals

Goals of a performance review can vary by employer, but generally performance reviews accomplish:

  1. Increased employee engagement: Conducting frequent performance reviews can influence employees to give their best each day, commit to your organization’s goals and values, and motivate them to contribute to your success. 
  2. Team building: Teams with good internal communication perform better and have a better understanding of company culture. They are more aware of the organization’s goals and objectives. 
  3. Reduce conflict: Everyone sees the world in their own way and everyone has different perceptions. Recognize this and allow each employee the opportunity to share issues with you in one-on-ones can help to resolve conflicts before they occur. 
  4. Improved HR: Performance reviews can help you understand what your employees want and provides you with the opportunities to build policies around items that would address their concerns and needs. 
  5. Enhanced transparency: Active communication channels help to create rumor free work environments and help you earn trust across your entire organization. 

Performance Review Examples

Some examples of topics for a performance review can include: 

  1. Short and long-term priorities
  2. Feedback on assignments
  3. Check-in on goals 
  4. Identify and resolve roadblocks
  5. Celebrate successes 
  6. Identify what worked well (and didn’t) on recent projects
  7. Career goals
  8. Learning opportunities
  9. Ask for feedback from a manager perspective
  10. Schedule your next meeting
« Back to Glossary Index