Performance Improvement and Performance Management

Allegations of underperformance are not only stressful but can be unfair and unjustified.

If your employer has proposed a performance improvement plan, a performance management plan,
or has initiated a process in relation to your work performance it needs to be justified.

There are several things to look out for to determine if your employer is being fair and reasonable.


Firstly, some employers have policies or guidelines for how they contact such matters. They should
bring this to the employee’s attention right away and carry out the process in accordance with the
policy or guidelines. If they do not, this may constitute a breach of your employment agreement.


The employer should have an objective way to measure your performance and compare it to others.
This usually comes in the form of key performance indicators (KPIs).


The targets for performance should be realistic and achievable. For example, it would be
unreasonable for an employer to expect an employee to make no mistakes ever.


The setting of targets could be based on previous employees in the position. However, the
employer must consider external factors that the employee has no control over, and must not blame
the employee for such things. For example: if customers are spending less money due to the current
pandemic, it would be unreasonable to attribute a decline in revenue solely to the employee’s
performance.


If an employer does have valid concerns, then both the employer and the employee must work
together, in good faith, to address the concerns. This means that the employer should propose a
plan and provide all relevant information to the employee. The employer should also answer any
questions that the employee has and should consider the employee’s suggestions. If the employer
simply tells the employee that a plan has been decided without the person’s input, that is likely to
amount to a breach of good faith.


If you have any questions about performance management or performance issues, do not hesitate
to call The Worker’s Advocate for a free consultation.