The Increase in Development and Performance Management in the COVID Era

Research shows that leaders are more frequently engaging in performance management and people development.

Setting out to understand how changes to the way we work have affected performance management as well as learning and development (L&D), performance management software firm Engagedly published results of their survey of 267 company leaders (directors and above) who manage organizations with more than 50 employees across 20 different industries. It found that leaders are more frequently engaging in performance management as well as people development, and overwhelmingly expect to continue.

Performance Management Increased during the COVID Era

According to the survey, over 50% of leaders reported that they were more frequently participating in ongoing check-ins with managers, reviews assessments, and management processes. Additionally, 64.8% of respondents reported increased frequency of engagement in ongoing check-ins with managers during the COVID era, while 73.8% of leaders anticipate these changes to continue post COVID, correlating to the 70.7% of respondents who reported satisfaction with these changes.

As the COVID-19 pandemic was fully underway in the summer of 2020, Gallup reported that most performance management systems were too rigid for uncertain times, with leaders facing the imperative to find newer, more agile ways to track and encourage high performance, while providing ongoing feedback and metrics along the way.

And with the pandemic not nearly over in many parts of the world, the need to adapt performance management to uncertain times remains crucial. Harvard Business Review recommends that leaders define effective criteria before making critical decisions about employees, align all decision makers, and engage others in being consistent and equitable to ensure that performance management is realistic, agile, and unbiased in the new normal.

Learning and Development Increased During COVID

Not only is skill development a crucial component to business development, it’s what employees want. As a result of the pandemic, certain skills gaps have emerged while COVID-19 continues to shape in-demand skills. According to Engagedly’s survey, “people development,” which includes online training and development assessments, has increased during the pandemic. The results found that over 50% of leaders were more frequently participating in people development processes, with 69.1% of leaders reporting that online training from internal content providers is occurring more frequently.

Further, a large majority (78.7%) of leaders anticipate these changes to continue post-COVID, quite likely due to the 71.9% of leaders reporting their satisfaction with these changes to development. With many of us remaining remote for the foreseeable future, now is the time to create a comprehensive learning and development strategy and as well as provide access to skill development platforms for employees to enjoy from the comfort of their own home.

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