DUBAI, 15 December 2015 – Despite the recent spotlight on performance management, the latest research from global professional services company Towers Watson shows that only 45% of companies in the Middle East consider their performance management process to be effective. Furthermore, only three in ten managers (37%) and employees (34%) reported to be generally satisfied with their performance management process.

According to Towers Watson’s research, almost half of the employees acknowledged that the performance feedback and review process is done twice a year while only 13% of the respondents confirmed to have a continuous feedback approach in place. In addition, the study observed that 78% of companies reported the alignment to strategic business priorities as the main purpose of performance management, followed by driving high performance across the workforce (77%).

Towers Watson’s performance management survey has also revealed that when inquired about their willingness to change their performance management process, most of the companies (70%) have indicated that they intend to revisit their performance management process. However, when inquired about the use of performance ratings, 81% of the respondents expressed no intention of eliminating their use any time soon.

Elie Georgiou-Botaris, Middle East Practice Lead for Talent Management and Organization Alignment at Towers Watson Middle East, said: “Our latest performance management research suggests that it is essential for the organisations to embrace a new approach in their performance management, as it will have a great impact on their employees’ performance and engagement levels and will lead to sustainable business growth”. 

Towers Watson’s survey also shows that most of the respondents (72%) strongly agree that performance management’s influence on base pay, in particular, has increased, and as well, on short term incentive awards, in general. In contrast, according to half of the respondents, performance management has less impact on mobility decisions.

The research also shows that most of the organisations (40%) don’t know about the levels of satisfaction of their managers and employees regarding the performance management process.

Elie Georgiou-Botaris highlighted that“: There is the need to educate companies about the importance of this process to retain talent and thus achieve business competitiveness”.

Marjola Rintjema, Middle East Lead Consultant for Communication and Change Management at Towers Watson, added that: “Companies need to embrace new approaches that result in higher effectiveness of the process; they need to support their managers by developing the right skills and deploy tools for better performance management so they can involve people and promote a continuous performance management process and a culture that will, more likely, deliver the desired successful results”.