Business Category Business: career motivation and tips to move ahead

How to fill out my employee appraisal

The annual employee appraisal is not typically met with much enthusiasm. Most employees fear they will omit key information, or their achievements may be considered insufficient.

Approach the task of filling out your employee appraisal without trepidation. The University of Pittsburgh's "Guide For Employees Completing the Self-Appraisal", suggests that the process itself encourages you to be proud of your accomplishments and candid about your weaknesses

Review your current job description, it contains information that will help you fill out your appraisal. Gather relevant documents such as correspondence from satisfied clients and e-mail from managers and coworkers. These documents will remind you of your contributions to the company. Past appraisals offer valuable insight into your strengths and weaknesses; you will also find the commentary from previous managers beneficial.

Consult the human resources department if you need clarification. Most appraisal forms are not perfect and can be difficult to understand. Confirm the date the appraisal is due, and to whom it should be given. Ask who will have access to the information once your employee appraisal is completed, since this may determine what you write.

Describe your day-to-day activities; they should mirror your job description. Do not assume that management is aware of every change that takes place; be sure to include all significant workload increases or decreases.

List your strengths and achievements using measurable examples, such as "implemented automated system which increased productivity by 25 per cent and revenue by 12 per cent". Refrain from using vague examples like, "improved morale in the work place", which may be construed as your opinion.

Identify your short comings and take this opportunity to ask for the assistance you need. Self-appraisals require that you address areas of weakness; but tread lightly, keep the focus on your strengths.

Complete the evaluation honestly. You will be asked to rate yourself as an employee. If you give yourself an "excellent" rating, make sure you have achievements to back it up. If you are a less than stellar employee, be truthful. State why your rating is low and how you plan to turn things around.

Separate grievances with others from your self appraisal.Throwing coworkers under the bus, no matter how tempting it may be, is inappropriate. Employers appreciate employees who can resolve conflict with little or no fanfare. Do not compare your performance with that of another employee. Instead, compare your performance to the expectations, standards and goals set when you were hired.

Speak up. According to Peggy Klaus, author of "Brag! The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn Without Blowing It", it is your responsibility to make management aware of your finer qualities. Your performance should speak for itself, but it may not. This is the time to toot your own horn. Use this evaluation as a selling tool--employers are looking for the best talent to promote and, in some cases, retain. Remember, you are the authority on you.


  • Keep a positive attitude while you write your appraisal; it will be reflected in the words you choose. When you have completed the appraisal, sleep on it and review it after 24 hours. Don't wait until the last minute to complete your appraisal, which will cause unnecessary stress.


  • Your appraisal is confidential, do not share it with coworkers. Don't shoot yourself in the foot when you address your weaknesses. If the evaluation asks for three weaknesses, don't give them five. Speak to someone in the human resources department If you are dissatisfied with the appraisal process--not your coworkers.

Things Needed

  • Current job description
  • Previous evaluation
  • Training certifications
  • Client correspondence
  • Work-related awards