Performance Management System, PMS in short, implemented largely amongst elite workforce has been and would remain a potent area of interest, research, debate, confusion, a necessary evil and Management tool for “carrot & stick” towards its intended need.
Most of you would argue that above line is too radical & a lot more is being delivered today. True, advancements have been made to keep pace with successful marriage between increasing complexities of business and emotional satisfaction of modern workforce. Nevertheless, PMS retains its big question mark of having “delivered its expected and unexpected outcome”. This brief article is intended to highlight certain aspects of PMS where a clear gap exists in its successful implementation. The reference focus for PMS discussions has been taken as Industrial Infrastructure Sector because of its priority in Indian economy and being a large employer. Also, PMS requires different approach for key sectors due to its dynamics and expected benefits.
This brief article is intended to highlight certain aspects of PMS where a clear gap exists in its successful implementation. The reference focus for PMS discussions has been taken as Industrial Infrastructure Sector because of its priority in Indian economy and being a large employer. Also, PMS requires different approach for key sectors due to its dynamics and expected benefits.
Most companies in Infrastructure Sector operate with a model of centralized head office controlling funds flow, capex, commercials, contracts, legal, hr policies, project monitoring etc and project sites are mandated for essentially execution and client management. Bulk of workforce exists (both on-rolls, contract & outsourced) at project sites whose needs effective solution. An integrated HR-IT solution offers a “panacea” and a sales pitch that implementation of PMS will lead to achieving dramatic business results, as if giving “amrit” to Management to drive workforce with minimal economic investments. Nevertheless, the following areas need proper consideration;
- Interdepency of functions & roles: PMS schemes are often individual or team target driven but the success in most projects are largely dependent upon critical interdependencies amongst various functions and roles which are not truly captured in PMS design.
- Target Enablers: Often the targets one is expected to achieve at project sites are majorly dependent on head office support for timely delivery of supplies, funds, trained manpower, and work contractors. PMS design does not capture these enablers and is majorly a target versus achievement calculations.
- Budgets from Government affecting Payouts: Large number of projects get affected due to lack of budgets and / or delayed release of funds from Central & State Governments affecting project performance and in turn the employee output. These, exceptions are rarely captured in PMS systems.
- Time duration and functionality: Most of these projects are of multiple years’ duration and have different cash flow models. Evaluation of employee performance on a half-yearly / yearly basis does not truly reflect project performance and profitability. Also, some functions deliver their outputs much earlier than others and employees are moved to other projects, so their evaluation for their own performance gets a mixed treatment due to multiple project dynamics and profitability.
These challenges are being faced by many Organizations and HR leaders are addressing them in their own ways, but the fact remains that after PMS cycle there remains a sizeable section of workforce who are not satisfied with the evaluation of their performance and its impact on their future career.
By – Sanjay Jain, Vice President – Corporate HR at SPML Infra Limited