Managing for performance policy
Intent and objectives
RMIT is committed to supporting and developing staff so they can assist the University to meet its strategic goals and to achieve their individual performance and development objectives. This policy is closely linked to the professional development policy and procedure.
The objective of this policy is to improve individual and work group performance by:
- clarifying performance expectations through ongoing communication between managers and staff and to provide opportunities for constructive, two-way feedback
- aligning staff members’ performance with the strategic directions of their work unit, School or Group, College or Portfolio, and the University
- planning and providing appropriate development opportunities for staff including career development
- monitoring and appraising staff members’ performance to determine training and developmental needs
- providing support for encouraging and rewarding high performance
- providing mechanisms to help managers identify and address poor performance
This policy applies to all casual, fixed term and continuing staff members University-wide.
It is not necessary to document a Performance Workplan online with casual staff, agency staff or contractors. However, performance expectations should be documented as appropriate.
RMIT’s Performance Management framework
MyPerformance MyCareer (MPMC) defines, promotes and supports staff by:
- ensuring through MyPerformance that systems and processes are in place to promote constructive performance conversations and that staff are developed to be successful
- using MyCareer to build staff potential, recognise and reward achievement and provide opportunities for staff that foster a career within RMIT
Performance management at RMIT consists of the following three core elements:
- Performance Workplan
- Ongoing feedback and development
- Performance conversations at the midyear review and end of year appraisal
Staff members will jointly discuss, plan and review their performance with their manager using the Performance Workplan to record their discussions.
The Performance Workplan is the tool used to document performance activities throughout the performance cycle, including objectives and performance feedback.
Performance conversations and supporting documents should incorporate:
- the context of the work to local and strategic plans
- what work will be committed to (objectives)
- how work is to be done (e.g. behavioural expectations)
- the standard to which work should be done
- what good performance looks like
- support for skill, knowledge and career development
Together, the staff member and manager will identify what outcomes are to be achieved and how the work needs to be managed.
Staff members are responsible for:
- understanding, and seeking clarification of expected outcomes and priorities so they can manage workloads and competing priorities
- advising their manager of issues relevant to delivering outcomes
- planning and driving their work, career goals and professional development
- identifying appropriate sources of feedback
- behaving in a way that is consistent with the University’s values and expected behaviours as outlined in RMIT’s Behavioural Capability Framework and required of their role
- providing constructive feedback to their manager
- self appraising their performance
- acting on constructive feedback
Managers are responsible for
- creating an environment of open, ongoing, two-way communication and feedback
- determining clear objectives, priorities, directions and performance standards for staff members, informed by the relevant unit plans
- coaching staff to demonstrate expected behaviour as outlined in RMIT’s Behavioural Capability Framework
- negotiating outcomes, timeframes and sources of feedback
- ensuring their staff having adequate Performance Workplans which are completed within required timeframes
- providing leadership, direction and guidance to staff members
- providing appropriate professional development opportunities
- ensuring staff members have the resources required to complete their work and improve performance
- providing regular constructive feedback to their staff
- acting on constructive feedback
- objectively assessing and appraising staff performance based on evidence at the midyear review and end of year appraisal
Performance Workplans are mandatory for fixed term and continuing staff members.
Casual staff, contractors and agency staff engaged to undertake work with the University also require to have in place clear expectations of performance outcomes and expected behaviours They do not have access to a Performance Workplan via the ESS portal and should contact ‘MyPerformance MyCareer’ for alternative resources for documenting performance outcomes and expected behaviours.
Five key factors determine outcomes to be included in the staff member’s Performance Workplan:
(i) the work unit’s objectives
(ii) the work unit’s approach to workload allocation
(iii) the staff member’s work objectives
(iv) the staff member’s position description
(v) behavioural expectations as identified in the Behavioural Capability Framework
Within the requirements of the work unit’s objectives and the requirements of the position description, the staff member’s duties and development activities reflect their skills, interest and motivation. The work unit’s objectives will be informed by the business plan.
Managers and staff should regularly discuss progress against the Performance Workplan and review priorities. Open ongoing conversations about work to be completed and expected behaviour will be held between managers and staff members and will include a discussion of factors supporting or hindering achievement.
Conversations about performance are regular to ensure timely feedback and to allow issues to be addressed as they arise.
The Performance Workplan includes a formal midyear review and an end of year appraisal of
- Cascaded objectives
- Individual objectives
- Behavioural expectations
- Development objectives
Performance review and appraisal outcomes will be documented and used when making decisions about (1) continuation of employment during/following probation or contract renewal, (2) ongoing performance management, professional development and career progression and (3) incremental progression or other rewards for performance
The Code of Conduct and Behavioural Capability Framework define behavioural expectations for all staff depending on job role and level.
The Code of Conduct clarifies the standards of behaviour and actions expected of all staff members at RMIT.
The Behavioural Capability Framework identifies behavioural expecations for guiding individual and organisational behaviour. It differentiates proficiency levels of expected behavioural capabilities by providing clear and consistent expectations for all staff.
Staff will be asked to self appraise and seek feedback from their manager on their behavioural expectations as set out in the Performance Workplan.
It is important to give staff clear, objective and specific feedback, provide staff the opportunity to self-appraise and for the manager to formally assess and appraise performance.
At the end of year, staff and managers will be able to document an overall performance appraisal via the Performance Workplan online.
It is recommended that expectations around appraisals and understanding what ‘good’ looks like is clearly defined and understood at the objective setting stage.
Achieving all and exceeding all set objectives and expected behaviours
Achieving all and exceeding a number of set objectives and expected behaviours
Achieving all set objectives and expected behaviours
Achieving most set objectives and expected behaviours
Achieving none or only a few set objectives and expected behaviours
New employee under probation
Rewarding and recognising performance
Managers are responsible for encouraging staff to achieve and exceed their performance objectives. To recognise high performance effectively, the manager should ensure the reward and recognition provided to staff:
- is commensurate with the achievement, level of performance or impact on the University
- is relevant, equitable, fair and transparent
- is valued and meaningful to the particular staff member, recognising their preference for the things they find rewarding and how the recognition is given For example, some individuals enjoy public recognition and others prefer private recognition in person or with a thank you note
If the staff member is due for incremental progression and their performance is outstanding, the manager may recommend that:
- a professional staff member is awarded double increments
- an academic staff member is awarded double or multiple increments
For further information refer to the Incremental progression procedure.
Unsatisfactory work performance
Where a staff member’s work performance does not meet an acceptable standard, an appropriate process of investigation must be taken.
In the first instance, managers should support staff to improve their performance in accordance with the relevant legislation and principles of natural justice.
Support strategies may include professional guidance, counselling, staff development, role clarification, and revision of work allocation (refer to Unsatisfactory performance guideline).
If the staff member’s performance does not improve as a result of this support, the manager may initiate appropriate disciplinary procedures (in consultation with Human Resources).
Misconductmeans conduct, attitude or behaviour which is considered by the University to be unacceptable because it breaches the University’s Code of Conduct, policies or procedures.
Serious misconduct means serious misbehaviour or deliberate actions that may seriously impede the staff member or their colleagues from carrying out their duties.
The University will manage misconduct/serious misconduct of staff members in accordance with the provisions of relevant legislation, agreements and awards.[Next: Supporting documents and information ]