360 Degree Survey – What is a 360 Degree Survey

Traditional performance appraisals are inherently biased. Usually one or two managers come together and rate an employee based on their subjective views of the employee or their belief of what a “good score” is.

One employee may receive rave reviews because their supervisor believes in providing the highest ratings unless proven otherwise, while an equally good employee may receive only average marks because their supervisor either doesn’t like them or doesn’t believe in providing high scores for reasons such as “there’s always room for improvement.”

Performance evaluations are supposed to be objective assessments, but research has shown that they are not objective. This means that they’re not necessarily the ideal way to analyze an employee’s value or performance. Instead, many look towards 360-degree surveys.

Introduction to 360 Degree Surveys

360-degree surveys are surveys that poll anyone that has worked with the employee, rather than a single individual. This includes coworkers, subordinates, supervisors, and even contractors, clients and anyone else that the individual has been connected to. A 360-degree survey is a more objective assessment of performance, because they look at how performance is perceived by a larger sample and connect that performance to the people that have the most contact and are in the best position to judge it. While bias still plays a bit of a role in the individual assessment, it is unlikely to affect the larger data as a whole, thus providing greater insight into:

  • Strengths and weaknesses of the employee
  • Performance and productivity of the employee
  • Training and knowledge of the employee and more

Everything can be incorporated into these types of surveys, including feedback from anyone connected to the individual, and the data can be weighted and collected in order to provide a more accurate picture of the actual employee’s abilities, personality, leadership potential and much more. Here are a few tips to make the most out of your 360 degree analysis.

Creating a Professional 360 Degree Survey With SurveyMethods

SurveyMethods was specifically created for companies that want a better approach to run their business. That’s why we provide sample 360-degree surveys for free in our survey library, and tools to help you customize the templates in order to get the answers you need. Our survey software is the perfect tool for collecting data on your employees and your business, and the 360-degree survey is just one example of the many tools we have available for a very low monthly cost. If you’re interested in learning more about our system or starting your own 360 survey, sign up with SurveyMethods today.


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