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Peer review is an important factor in an effective multi-rater feedback. You would find many articles and blogs on the web about the pros and cons of peer reviews at 360 degree feedbacks. But we think peer review is an essential part of a successful multi-rater feedback survey at the workspace. Also, we think peer review at the workplace can only be fruitful if they are provided proper training before conducting the surveys.  Here we shall discuss peer review training at the workplace – the 3 things to look at.

You spend most of the time at the office with your co-workers. But, think about this! How often are you totally frank with your boss or subordinates? Probably you share most of your frank opinions with your peers, maybe someone of the same rank but from different vertical. And the person who is most eligible to put him/herself in your shoes is your peers!

But inviting peers for a multi-rater survey has to be few strings attached. They do not know each and everything about you, so asking them too many questions may not help. Thus we need proper Peer review training at the workplace. We have discussed the 3 things to look at Peer review training at the workplace.

#1. Provide training to peers:

Most of the organizations today provide the opportunity to employees to conduct self-assessment in multi-rater surveys. These organizations allow the employees to choose their own raters. But here of the manager has the prime responsibility. He/she should not only approve the raters but also at the same time notify the HR manager to train the selected and approved peers. The HR officer and manager should give proper time to peers on educating them to give fruitful feedback. He/she should also assure them that reviewers’ identity would not be divulged as the process is generally conducted by third party HR firms. In multi-rater feedback report, these feedback sources would remain anonymous.

#2. Choose the peer and choose the questions: 

This is one aspect where the Manager has greater responsibility. If you are a manager you must know where the shortcoming is an employee. But why there is this shortcoming in the employee’s job-related behaviour and competencies, maybe peers can only show you the blind spot at times. But there are probabilities they also are ignorant about this. So it is the prerogative of the Manger to oversee that peers are judiciously chosen at multi-rater feedback surveys.

Also choosing a proper number of questions is mandatory. Too less or too many questions would not serve the purpose. The survey process should focus on adding questions which are essential to align individual productivity with organization goals.

#3. Be flexible:

1 thing left at peer review training at the workplace, is, to teach the peers to be flexible at the survey. Most of the surveys provide options like “Don’t know” or “Not eligible” beside the rating scale. Also, there is a comment box under each rating scale. Peer reviewers should understand this importance. If they are unaware of any behavioural traits about their brother employees, they should use the “Don’t know” checkbox. Also, they should not keep the open-ended comment box vacant. Because, only, open-ended feedbacks can properly validate entire ratings and kill any ambiguity in the feedback process.

Thus peer review training at the workplace is an essential tool to make multi-rater feedback survey effective and enable proper training  need analysis. It’s time to align feedback survey with training effectiveness and ROI.