Using Employee Performance Data & Analytics for Strategic Planning

by Mike Tannian on July 19, 2022

Public sector agencies that ignore employee performance analytics are missing out on a chance to support organizational growth and work more strategically.

Article Highlights

Organizations are full of data – and not just about the products you produce, the services you provide, or the budgets you use. Your employees create mountains of data about themselves, too. It’s called employee performance data, and it relates to how well they manage deliverables and accomplish their goals. 

Understanding this data can help organizations become more efficient and effective by understanding employment trends, hiring and onboarding costs, and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) figures. This type of valuable data allows agencies to make improvements in order to function at their peak.

The problem is that many organizations, especially those in the public sector, don't understand the need for employee performance data or have an effective performance management process to help leverage these insights.

This article will explain the importance of data reporting and analytics, and discuss how performance appraisal software like NEOGOV's Perform can give public sector organizations all the tools you need to analyze their employee performance data and plan more strategically for success.

The Problem: Lack of Data Reporting and Analytics

What hiring trends do you see in your workplace? Are your employee performance standards slipping or improving? Are you meeting your DEI goals? How long is it taking to fill a position? What are your onboarding costs?

If you can’t answer these questions about your organization, it probably means you're not tracking your performance and hiring data. Without this information, you have no way of knowing how your public sector organization is progressing towards your goals. You can't monitor employee performance trends across the agency, and you don't know if your policies are effective or if there are gaps in your training. 

Without the right kind of data reporting and employee performance management analytics, it's hard to make strategic plans for the future. Whether it's hiring and recruitment, performance evaluations, or training measurement, you must examine your performance data to make data-driven decisions that produce a higher-performing workforce.

What employee work performance reports do you need?

The Perform module helps you track and measure performance with employee performance evaluation reports that monitor progress, goals, trends, and more. Let’s review some of the most important reports you should use to support your goals. 

Status report

Status reports show the current state and development of a project, whether it will meet deadlines, areas of improvement, and any goals and objectives it has met on the way. With the status report, managers can understand the project's scope, time, quality, and cost.

Progress report

A progress report shows all the work completed on a project since the last report — tasks completed, goals met, changes made, etc. With it, you can compare current and previous progress reports to see how initiatives are advancing.

Trend report

With a trend report, you can compare the current project performance to the last performance, such as month-to-month or year-over-year comparisons. For example, how many new hires were made by Q3 2022 vs. Q3 2021?

Forecasting report

What do you expect to happen during a project? A forecasting report predicts future outcomes and expectations. It includes deadlines, expected costs, and project quality, which helps you determine resource and budget allocation. 

Variance report

Use a variance report to compare your forecasting report to status and progress reports and ensure everything is staying within the expected parameters. You can also identify the KPIs for a project – as specified in the original project plan – and see whether they're being met.

Earned value report

An earned value report determines your monetary costs based on the variances found within the performance report, such as time spent, cost of materials, and cost of labor versus the amount of work completed. This report is often combined with the status report to give organizations an overall picture of a project's status and financial performance.

What are the best employee performance metrics to track?

Your organization should also measure several important employee performance metrics to understand how well your workforce is progressing business objectives and identify opportunities to improve productivity. Below, we describe some of the best metrics to measure employee performance and the insights they can provide.

Commitment and contribution to goals

An ideal employee should be dedicated to your organization’s goals. Do their individual goals align with your agency's goals? Do they work to progress your overall mission and meet the professional standards needed to be successful? Do they require additional training? 

Performance consistency

How consistently is the employee meeting their KPIs? Do they provide steady, ongoing service throughout the evaluation period, or do they have high and low points? Are there reasons for low periods of consistency? How can those be overcome or improved?

Quality of work

The quality of the employee's work is important to help the agency meet its goals. Is the employee's quality of work meeting their individual goals and organizational goals? Do they require regular oversight or do they reliably produce excellent work? Do they meet deadlines or do they often need to redo tasks to meet minimal standards? 

Employee behavior 

Behavior is another useful indicator of employee motivation, commitment, and success. Do they arrive on time? Are they often absent or frequently late to work? Do they abide by your acceptable rules and regulations and display appropriate workplace behavior?

Training and improvement

Continuous professional development shows that an employee wants to grow their contributions and their impact within your agency. Do employees participate in regular training and performance improvement? Do they seek new opportunities to learn, or rely on past experience alone? How do they react when given new projects, information, or responsibilities? You can measure an employee's performance skills or knowledge before and after training to see if they improve.

The Solution: Performance Appraisal Software

NEOGOV's employee performance appraisal software, Perform, gives public sector organizations the tools to solve the problems associated with non-standard and manual employee reviews. Let’s go over some key features of Perform that can help your organization leverage important employee performance analytics to improve efficiency and inform strategic planning.

Dashboards

This analytics software solution includes an employee performance dashboard to compare your employees' performance on different metrics, like goal setting, deliverables, training, and other invaluable business insights. You can customize each employee performance management dashboard around the metrics you want to measure and see actionable insights on your workforce. This lets you quickly identify areas that need attention, course correction, or additional training.

Data analytics and reporting

Perform offers in-depth data analytics and reporting, identifying trends in the organization as a whole and within departments. The reporting function generates operational reports and strategic reports to share with your managers and executives. 

Perform reports let you gather evaluation metrics in real-time. Each report is able to be exported and saved as a CSV, Excel, or PDF files for additional analysis:

    • Approval Status: Show active, archived, or specific evaluations by the due date or a particular date range.
    • Current vs. Historical Overall Performance: Compare overall performance ratings from the current year with previous years.
    • Employee Goals: Allows users to generate reports for goals and associated information. Users can enter the name of any goal they have access to and report specifically on that goal, as well as the goals aligned with it.
    • Evaluation Status by Department: An aggregated status of all active evaluations summarized by department.
    • Evaluation Status Detail: Detailed status of all active evaluations.
    • Goal Status: Sort status of performance goals by department
    • Goal Status by Employee: Sort status of goals by employee, including links to appropriate employee development strategies.
    • Item Ratings: Individual ratings used to identify employee strengths and weaknesses documented in the system.
    • Performance Rating: Overall performance ratings for selected evaluations like key performance indicators (KPIs) and goals.
    • Task Status: Summary of tasks and their current status.

With these insights, you can set goals, measure scores across the organization, and create a benchmark of employee performance data. Then see how your organization compares to the benchmark performance and how the employees compare to each other. You can identify your top performers and determine which employees may need further training or a performance improvement plan.

Data trends

You can view current versus historical performance data trends in Perform, showcasing the year's overall output versus what the agency has done in the past. This can help you make future hiring and staffing decisions, evaluate training results, plan future training, and fill gaps in your strategic plan.

Review automation

Perform also lets you automate employee performance review reports, which saves time and lets you increase the frequency of employee performance reviews to provide valuable employee feedback.

360-degree feedback

NEOGOV's employee performance analytics solution lets managers engage in ongoing communication with employees. Managers can give regular feedback and track goals through email, mobile or desktop journals, and recurring check-ins. This allows for more frequent course corrections, stopping small mistakes from becoming large problems.

The Benefits of Performance Appraisal Software

Perform helps organizations save time, money, and resources by providing a roadmap to improve employee performance that helps you plan strategically. The system’s data insights and employee performance management dashboards provide a framework for defining strategic goals and creating alignment throughout the organization.

Progress your organizational goals

With the ability to quickly identify key employee performance metrics, track employee goals, and view progress towards KPIs, you can ensure your workforce is driving your organizational goals forward. Employee performance evaluation reports also show senior leadership if the organization is meeting its goals.

Improve employee performance

The employee performance management dashboard helps you spot larger trends within the organization over time. These can even uncover productivity issues, misalignments, or knowledge gaps in individual employees or departments that require corrective action, additional training, and oversight.

Save time and money

In Perform, automated processes reduce the time and hassle of managing performance reviews and make it easier to conduct them more frequently. This regular feedback gives employees direction for their work and reinforces the impact of their efforts, keeping them satisfied and engaged with their job. Without this, you risk leaving employees disoriented and detached from your organization, and can face an increase in employee turnover – which means increased hiring and onboarding costs. 

Reporting and analytics can help your organization be more strategic and efficient with the strong workforce you have. Plus, it helps you recognize your top performers for promotional opportunities and hire future employees to those standards. That will help you improve your organization’s overall efficiency, performance, and success.

Final Thoughts

Employee performance metrics identify performance progress and trends within your organization and allow you to keep KPIs towards goal achievement on track.

With employee performance dashboards to drive productivity and automation to streamline employee appraisals, public sector organizations can strengthen their workforce performance and better plan – and achieve – future strategies.

Learn why NEOGOV's Perform module is a leader in employee performance analytics and reporting by signing up for a free demo today.

Mike Tannian

Mike Tannian is the Director of Content Marketing at NEOGOV. With a talented team of writers by his side, he aims to produce content that delivers real value to public sector HR professionals at every stage in the buying journey.