Performance Management

Performance management is a process used by employers when they believe that their employees need to improve on areas of their work performance.  However, performance management is sometimes improper, or the process might be unfair or unreasonable.

How will the performance management occur?

Performance management is most often handled internally, and each employer is likely have their own way of conducting the process.

If you are placed under performance management or have been placed on a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP), you should be advised as such in writing. You should be given a copy of any PIP.

You should also enquire whether:

  • Your workplace has any policy outlining how the performance management will take place; and
  • If there such a policy company policy, you should request a copy of the policy and review it.  
A performance management policy will likely outline the steps that the employer will follow during the process.

If you are covered by an Enterprise Bargaining Agreement (EBA), you should check the Agreement to find out whether it contains any information on how performance management may be undertaken.
PLEASE NOTE: Not all EBAs will contain such information but, if your EBA does, then it is important to be aware of the steps to follow in the process.

What should I expect if I am subject to performance management?
Performance management should be fair and reasonable to give the employee an opportunity to improve their work performance.
If an employee is expected to achieve targets/deliverables, these should be clearly outlined, and they should be reasonable and achievable. The performance management process should also allow sufficient time for the employee to complete the relevant tasks/deliverables.
The process may also allow for ongoing review during the period of performance management, or regular meetings with team leaders, or managers.

How can Professionals Australia help a member who is subject to performance management?
If you are subject to performance management, we can assist you, particularly if you believe that the process is unfair or unreasonable.

When you contact Workplace Advice and Support team, our team:

  • Will ask you whether your workplace has a policy or other procedure for performance management; ensuring that any policy, procedure or EBA is being followed;
  • If there is a breach, may assist you to challenge the matter.

PLEASE NOTE: Professionals Australia can neither assess your work performance nor are we in a position to determine whether your performance requires improvement.

I do not believe that my performance management is legitimate. Can Professionals Australia help me?
Employers often use performance management as a legitimate way to assist their employees to improve their work performance. 

However, an employee may feel unfairly targeted during this process or believe this to be a form of bullying.  

Performance management is not considered bullying if its reasonable management action carried out in a reasonable manner. If you believe you’re being bullied, read our guide: Dealing with bullying at work

Do you believe your performance management is improper, unfair or unreasonable? If so, lodge your issue via My workplace , and we will provide specific advice in relation to your matter.

This publication is considered general information only and is not intended to be relied upon as legal advice or as a substitute for legal advice.