When And Why Employees Need Genuine Performance Improvement Plans

Performance improvement plans
Performance improvement plans

Performance improvement plans (PIPs) are formal plans created to help employees improve their performance when they are not meeting desired standards or expectations.

The previous blog, a better understanding of employee performance appraisals, discussed eight key aspects to help you understand employee performance appraisals. PIPs is one of them.

Here are key points to understand about performance improvement plans.

1. Identification of Performance Gaps

2. Clear Objectives and Targets

3. Actionable Steps and Strategies

4. Timelines and Monitoring

5. Support and Resources

6. Ongoing Feedback and Communication

7. Follow-up and Evaluation

Identification of Performance Gaps

Performance improvement plans are typically initiated when there are clear gaps between an employee’s current performance and expected performance standards. These gaps may be identified through regular performance evaluations, feedback discussions, or other performance monitoring processes. It is essential to have specific and measurable criteria to determine when a PIP is needed.

Clear Objectives and Targets

Performance improvement plans outline specific objectives and targets that the employee needs to achieve within a defined timeframe. These objectives are designed to address identified performance gaps and bring employee performance up to expected levels. Clear and well-defined objectives provide clarity and focus for employee improvement efforts.

Actionable Steps and Strategies

A performance improvement plan details the steps and strategies the employee and their manager will undertake to address performance gaps. These can include additional training, coaching, mentoring, skill development activities, or changes to work processes. The plan should outline the resources and support available to employees to aid their improvement efforts.

Timelines and Monitoring

Performance improvement plans have specific timelines or milestones. There is a timeframe for achieving each objective or target. To assess employee progress, provide guidance, and track improvement, it is essential to schedule regular monitoring and feedback sessions. The manager plays a crucial role in monitoring employee performance, providing support, and addressing obstacles or challenges.

Support and Resources

It is important to provide employees with the necessary support and resources to succeed in their performance improvement plans. This can include access to training programs, mentoring, job aids, or additional supervision. The employee should feel supported and empowered to make the necessary improvements.

Ongoing Feedback and Communication

Performance improvement plans should include regular feedback and communication between the employee and their manager. This ensures that the employee receives timely guidance, understands expectations, and remains aware of their progress. Ongoing feedback helps employees stay on track, make adjustments when needed, and feel engaged in their improvement journey.

Follow-up and Evaluation

At the end of the performance improvement plan period, a comprehensive evaluation should take place to assess the employee’s progress. The evaluation should determine whether the employee has successfully addressed performance gaps or needs further action. Based on the evaluation, make decisions regarding continued support, termination of the plan, or other appropriate actions.


Make Performance improvement plans with a positive and supportive mindset, focusing on helping employees succeed rather than punitive measures. They offer employees the opportunity to enhance their performance, develop new skills, and align their work with organizational expectations. Successful completion of a performance improvement plan can lead to improved job performance, increased job satisfaction, and continued growth within the organization.

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  • Ram

    Ram, the author of "Business Development: Perspectives" on Amazon Kindle, has a wealth of experience in business development across multiple industries. He has over 30 years of experience in commodities, FMCG, and software industries, and has held various leadership positions in these sectors. In the commodities and FMCG industries, Ram served as GM of Business Development for southern India, where he successfully established new businesses and expanded existing ones. In the software industry, he was Regional Director of Business Development for Asia, where he was responsible for expanding the company's presence in the region. Ram has a proven track record of turning around loss-making ventures and establishing successful businesses. Ram has also served as the Director of Industry Partnerships and IT Blog editor at a software company, showcasing his expertise in technology and industry partnerships.

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