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How to Request a Performance Review

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You have everything to gain and nothing to lose when you ask your supervisor to evaluate your job performance. Supervisors -- and many employees -- often dread the annual performance review, so at a minimum, your boss might delay giving you a review. But in the best of circumstances, your boss will view your request as a sincere interest in performing your job duties to the company's expectations. In addition to getting the performance review you request, you might also get high marks for your initiative and motivation.

Before Your First Day

Hiring managers often discuss performance reviews during the hiring process. Many of them realize that prospective employees want to know how and when they'll receive a job evaluation, and the raise that may go along with strong performance. If the hiring manager doesn't broach the subject during an interview, speak up when she asks whether you have any questions. For example, you may ask, "How will my performance be evaluated and when? I'm eager to demonstrate my job skills and work ethic, so I'm interested in learning the company process for reviewing employee performance."

Once You Get the Hang of It

Whether you casually walk into your boss' office to ask for a review or submit a formal request to the human resources department and your manager, don't let a year go by before you ask for an evaluation. If you're in a new role and want to ensure that you're properly performing your job tasks, request a review after three or six months. When you submit a formal request, address the memo or letter to your manager and the human resources department, so it becomes a part of your employment file. If you have a close relationship with your boss or if you're in a small-business environment, you may only need to mention to your supervisor that you would like his feedback on your performance.


Ruth Mayhew has been writing since the mid-1980s, and she has been an HR subject matter expert since 1995. Her work appears in "The Multi-Generational Workforce in the Health Care Industry," and she has been cited in numerous publications, including journals and textbooks that focus on human resources management practices. She holds a Master of Arts in sociology from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Ruth resides in the nation's capital, Washington, D.C.

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