Implementing performance appraisal: Exploring the employee experience

Elaine Farndale, Clare Kelliher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Line managers play an important role as implementers of performance appraisal, enacting procedures designed by the HR function. However, the actual employee experience of these procedures (which may differ from how they were intended or enacted) in terms of perceptions of justice in the process is likely to have consequences for levels of organizational commitment. Furthermore, based on signaling theory, the broader organizational climate, measured here in terms of the level of trust employees have in the senior management, sets the context in which this experience takes shape. Presenting multilevel analysis of 4,422 employees across 22 business units, we show that organizational units with high trust in senior management have both higher levels of commitment, and show a stronger link between employee perceptions of fair treatment by their line manager during performance appraisal, and organizational commitment. This provides initial evidence that the impact of line manager actions is important for employee-level outcomes but is also constrained by the organizational climate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)879-897
Number of pages19
JournalHuman Resource Management
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Applied Psychology
  • Strategy and Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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