Performance Review Process

Managers and employees often meet throughout the year to review work expectations and discuss performance. At Suffolk, a formal evaluation is conducted once a year.

All staff (salaried and hourly) are reviewed at the end of the academic/fiscal year, and all completed performance reviews must be completed by August 31.

Your formal performance review recognizes both the outcomes you achieve and the way you approach your work, your colleagues, students, etc.   It is designed to be an interactive process for managers and employees to discuss job responsibilities, goals and objectives for the year, achievements, obstacles or areas for improvement. The review is developmental in nature, so it will identify positive performance that meets all objectives and standards for the position, as well as opportunities to improve performance and gain new skills.

The Performance Review Form [PDF] is just one tool for assessing performance.  The University requires documentation of every performance review, however, you and your manager may use an alternative that works better for you, provided it covers both outcomes and behavior.

Below is information to guide managers in initiating the formal evaluation process and to help those being evaluated know what to expect.

Getting started

  • Review the job description and list the key responsibilities on the performance review (Note: if the job description is not current, this is a great time to work with your HR Partner to revise it) The Performance Review Form [PDF] has space for 7 key responsibilities.  It is recommended that there are no less than 3 or no more than 7 major responsibilities. Each should take a minimum of 10% of the staff member’s time over the course of the year.
  • Review prior year’s Performance review, specifically Goals & Objectives to evaluate achievement and completion.
  • Rate and comment on each job responsibility. The majority of performance ratings are likely to be Proficient.   It is important to communicate to employees that proficient means they are demonstrating consistent performance and doing the job well.


  • Send your completed draft review to the staff member to review and  prepare for your in-person meeting
  • In the meeting with your staff member, discuss job responsibilities and other performance measures and how your assessment of progress over the past year.
  • Engage the staff member in the conversation by asking for feedback on their own performance and any accomplishments not already included in your assessment.
  • Review and celebrate accomplishments.  Agree on learning/developmental plans that may be required during the next year in order to achieve greater level of proficiency.  Document plans in the Goals & Objectives section of the review.

Put it together

  • Based on the discussion, complete the review. The review may be informed by the discussion with the employee, but it remains your evaluation of performance.
  • Forward the completed review to the staff member to add his/her comments in the “staff member’s comments” section of the template and schedule a follow up meeting, if necessary.


  • Sign the review after your staff member has signed it.
  • Scan the review and forward to your HR partner.  Be sure to send a copy to the staff member, too.

Please contact your Human Resources Partner if you have any questions regarding the performance review process. If you do not know your Human Resources Partner's name or contact information, please contact Human Resources at 617-573-8415.