How to Master Performance Management in Manufacturing

Morgane Lança
October 17 2022

Efficient employee performance management is a must for all companies, but challenges differ depending on the industry. Manufacturing organizations face specific issues which might lead them to rank performance management at the bottom of their list of priorities. However, good performance management practices are highly beneficial to all organizations.

Read on to learn more about the performance strategies you need to implement in your manufacturing company!

1) Challenges of Performance Management in Manufacturing

Performance management is a whole world, made all the more complex by several factors specific to the manufacturing industry:

  • Fast-paced operations;
  • Routine-oriented tasks;
  • Factories spread across various locations and countries;
  • Lack of time to build performance reports;
  • Limited visibility on individual performance and outcomes.

If you’re feeling discouraged at the mere idea of overcoming these challenges in your own company, you still have to consider the time/benefits ratio. Indeed, efficient performance management is necessary for your business strategy and organizational success! Here’s why.

2) Benefits of Efficient Performance Management in Your Company

Now that we have identified the challenges specific to performance management in the manufacturing industry, it is time to talk about the pros for your company. They are numerous and crucial to your organizational success!

Productivity and Business Performance

The first benefit and probably the most sought-after is business performance. Streamlining performance management in the manufacturing industry consistently increases productivity and product quality.

The math is simple: regular performance reviews help you identify individual and organizational performance issues before they get out of hand. By identifying strengths and weaknesses and building strategic action plans accordingly, you will be less likely to face slowdowns in productivity.

If you want to master performance reviews and increase business productivity, check out our ultimate guide on performance management

Safety in the Workplace

Another crucial challenge faced by manufacturing companies can be solved with efficient employee performance management. Indeed, performance issues often lead to accidents and mishaps, and regularly assessing employees’ knowledge about safety helps avoid these issues. In addition, a safe work environment decreases absenteeism rates!

Team Growth and Development

Performance reviews and regular one-on-one conversations with employees support team and individual growth. In addition, by discussing development expectations and identifying potential shortcomings, you will be able to set up relevant ongoing training strategies, increasing employee engagement in the process!

Valuing Skilled Workers

Identifying skilled employees supports your future recruiting efforts and helps you express much-deserved employee recognition. At the same time, you will be able to identify low-performing employees and understand where performance issues stem from.

All in all, efficient performance management supports recognition and adequate follow-up for all employees, thereby increasing engagement and productivity.

Higher Employee Engagement and Retention Rates

Speaking of engagement: don’t we all want to have motivated employees on our side? The benefits of high employee engagement are numerous: better work atmosphere and mental health, fewer professional accidents, increased productivity and happiness, and effective teamwork… Above all else, motivated workers are less likely to leave your organization. Considering the costs associated with high turnover rates, employee retention is a crucial challenge for your company. And you have guessed it: an efficient performance strategy will significantly support your retention efforts!

3) Performance Strategies You Need to Implement

I am guessing that you are now convinced of the value of good performance management in your company! Here comes the best part: you can implement performance management strategies in your organization to reach business objectives.

Individual Meetings and Communication

You can evaluate performance in many ways, the most obvious being performance appraisals. If you have not already set up a frequency for these evaluations, now is the time! Modern performance management tends to favor regular performance evaluations rather than annual reviews. However, you can also assess employee performance during less formal individual meetings and through consistent communication.  Our advice is to listen to your workers and regularly ask them how they feel about their jobs. More often than not, with good communication, you will be able to notice shifts in performance and motivation. Furthermore, open conversations will allow you to identify and solve problems before they get out of hand.

Defining Clear Objectives

Measuring employee performance requires a clear understanding of objectives on both parts. Managers and employees need to know their goals for the month or quarter to improve. Setting up written goals ensures that your performance evaluation is objective and measurable. Employees also feel more motivated to reach their monthly target with a clear plan.

Ongoing Training

Performance issues often come from a lack of training! Your teams rely on your company’s development opportunities to grow professionally. If they feel like they lack knowledge or are stagnating in their jobs, they might lose motivation, and their performance will suffer.

If we said it once, we said it a hundred times: efficient training is the backbone of manufacturing companies. Plus, employees that grow by your side often stay by your side!

Key Performance Indicators

Now that you have set up a comprehensive performance management strategy, it is time to measure performance. Of course, performance appraisals are essential, but sometimes clear numbers are needed, especially when you are getting back on the right track.

That is where key performance indicators come in handy! Ranging from retention rates to productivity indicators, they provide reliable data on what worked and what needs improvement in your strategy. In addition, you can analyze a chosen period for further visibility of your organizational health. In short, KPIs ensure that you never fall behind on your performance strategy!

Performance Management Tools

KPIs are an essential feature of performance management systems such as HR software, which offers other tools to support your strategy. For example, Human Resources Information Systems (HRIS) allow you to manage performance reviews from start to finish: you just need to choose your desired frequency and enter objectives and comments directly on your platform! Performance features will also let you track individual performance quickly and easily.

Dedicated performance management software solutions are also particularly handy when it comes to saving time, and time is of the essence in manufacturing companies. By dematerializing your processes, you will avoid information losses, double data entries and repetitive tasks! HR tech is your best ally in overcoming performance management challenges and reaching business success.

Want to see how HR tech can support your performance management?

Discover Folks HR, our affordable and powerful HRIS!


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