Perception of fairness in performance appraisals : a two sample study
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
The purpose of this study was to determine what is perceived as fair in performance appraisals by two samples of workers; those in charge of personnel (superiors) and those without such responsibilities (subordinates).
87 Government Department employees from different departments responded to an open ended questionnaire in which they described the determinants of particularly fair or unfair performance appraisals. By Q - sort analysis, the responses were categorised into 15 distinct determinants of fairness in performance evaluations from which an importance weighting questionnaire was constructed. Another 280 subjects from government departments completed the questionnaire: 109 superiors and 171 subordinates. Ratings of the perceived importance of each determinant were factor analysed for the entire sample, yielding 5 factors: 'thoroughness of appraisal for each individual', 'contact with appraiser I appraiser feedback', 'consequences of appraisal due to input', 'qualification of assessor', and 'sources of bias'.
One factor 'Contact with the appraiser I appraisal feedback' found a significant difference between the two samples. The other four factors were perceived and rated the same over both samples. Also the recognition of both procedural and distributive factors was achieved by both superiors and subordinates.
Results are discussed in terms of theory on organisational justice and existing research.