Multi-source, or 360-degree, reviews are quickly becoming one of the most frequently utilized forms of assessments in companies. It’s surprising then that so few businesses truly understand the two most important things about them.
Despite the manner in which many companies use it, individual improvement is not the primary advantage of 360-degree feedback. While such feedback does extend a number of benefits directly to employees, including improved communication with co-workers and clearer objectives for career development, those benefits pale in comparison to what that feedback can do for the company as a whole – if used correctly.
The best method for using the feedback obtained through the 360-review process is to compare the data gathered among employees, groups, and departments. Such comparisons enable companies to create benchmarks for success and to analyze the data in such a way that they gain a greater understanding of their broad-scale strengths and weaknesses. This understanding then enables businesses to devote learning resources directly to problem areas, thus saving time and money. Using 360-feedback data in this way also contributes to the development of a well-rounded and exceptional team. When every person in a group or department possesses the necessary skills and qualities to excel within that group or department, the team’s productivity and customer service scores soar.
To make the most of 360-degree feedback, then, businesses should view it as an aggregated picture of overall company performance. In this way, they can better allocate resources, set improved standards for high-performance based on real-world examples, and quickly fill open positions with the best possible candidates.