Vice Chancellor for Finance and Business
SPA Employee Performance Appraisal Program
Policies, Regulations and Rules Performance Management and Review
Assistant Director for Employment Relations
History: November 1, 2002. Last Revised: December 3, 2007. Effective: July 1, 2006. Additional
NCSU REG05.25.1 SPA Employee Performance Pay Dispute Resolution
Human Resources: Employment, Types of Appointments
NCSU SPA Work Plan and Performance Appraisal Form
North Carolina State University (NC State) maintains a system by which every university SPA
employee participates in a work planning and performance appraisal program. Supervisors and
managers direct this program while promoting active employee involvement in the process. This
program ensures that SPA employees:
1.1. Are aware of what is expected of them;
1.2. Receive timely feedback about their performance;
1.3. Receive opportunities for education, training and development; and
1.4. Receive rewards in a fair and equitable manner
2. Covered Employees
All SPA employees are covered.
It is the responsibility of all supervisors, managers, department heads, directors, deans, and vice
chancellors to assure that the policies and procedures of the SPA Employee Performance Appraisal
Program are administered equitably and consistently. The process is administered using the NC State
SPA Work Plan and Performance Appraisal Form.
3.1. Supervisor Duties
It is the supervisor's duty to implement each stage of the SPA performance appraisal process and
communicate it to employees so that they understand job expectations and the importance of his/her role
in the department.
3.2. Employee Duties
It is the employee's duty to perform job expectations articulated in the work plan. Employees are also
expected to seek clarification from supervisors on any portion of the work plan or performance appraisal
process that is unclear or in question. Employees may seek additional information on the performance
appraisal process from Human Resources as needed.
4. SPA Performance Cycle
The annual performance cycle begins each June 1 and ends the following May 31.
The SPA performance appraisal process consists of three stages:
Planning occurs at the beginning of the performance cycle when the SPA employee and supervisor meet
to discuss the employee's work plan, performance expectations, development plans and performance
tracking methods. It is the supervisor's responsibility to develop the work plan and effectively
communicate it to the employee.
Managing consists of the day-to-day tracking of SPA employees' progress toward achieving
performance expectations outlined in the work plan, and an Interim Review midway through the
performance cycle. It includes providing on-going feedback to employees through coaching and
reinforcing discussions throughout the performance cycle. Such discussions should be held regularly
throughout the performance cycle as well as in response to changes in performance. Managing includes
conducting the Interim Review, which should be completed midway through the performance cycle.
Appraising is the evaluation of SPA employees' work over the entire performance cycle as it compares
to the expectations documented on the work plan. Appraising occurs at the end of the performance
cycle. Any permanent SPA employee who has worked at least six months during the performance cycle
under an approved work plan will be considered as having completed the performance cycle for
performance pay purposes. The results of this stage of the process are the performance appraisal and
6. SPA Probationary Employees
6.1. SPA Probationary Employees
Probationary employees must receive a performance appraisal rating at the end of the six-month
probationary period (twelve months for law enforcement officers) in order to move into a permanent
appointment. 6.2. Probation Extension
For non-law enforcement officers, probation may be extended to a maximum of nine months if
documented performance concerns exist. Probation extensions must be communicated to the employee
in writing and submitted to Human Resources prior to the last day of the six-month appraisal period. No
extension of the probationary period is available for law enforcement officers, except for extensions
provided for under NC General Statute 17.
7.1. Establishing Work Plans
Supervisors are required to provide employees with detailed work plans as follows:
7.1.1. Probationary employees must have an established work plan within 30 working days of
7.1.2. Employees in training progressions must have work plans within 30 days of employment
7.1.3. Employees whose responsibilities and duties change must have new work plans within 30 days of
7.1.4. All SPA employees are provided with work plans at least once a year at the beginning of the
annual performance cycle.
7.2.1. Work plans should consist of primary job responsibilities, as well as responsibilities for upcoming
projects or programs. These responsibilities should be listed in priority order. Any improvement or
development plans that result from information from a previous appraisal or evaluation of job
performance during the current performance cycle should be included in Part II: Development Plans, of
the work plan.
7.2.2. The expected level of performance (describing quality, quantity, timeliness, etc.) must be included
for each responsibility and should be written at the “Good” level (See NC State SPA Work Plan and
Performance Appraisal form - Rating Scale). Supervisors should also discuss the criteria for other
performance ratings with the employee during the work planning session.
7.2.3. Expected levels of performance for other factors such as attendance, communication skills,
working relationships, etc., should be established by supervisors and discussed with the employee.
These should be documented in Section II, Performance Characteristics. Management should insure that
the expectations for similar jobs are consistent and equitable. The methods to be used to evaluate
performance should be documented by the supervisor and communicated to the employee.
7.2.4. Managers must sign the “approved by” section of the work plan prior to the supervisor delivering
it to the employee. The supervisor and employee must then sign the work plan and the supervisor must
provide the employee a copy of the completed and signed work plan.
7.2.5. The employee's signature does not imply agreement with the work plan; rather it acknowledges
receipt of the work plan from supervisor. In the event that an employee refuses to sign the Work Plan
form, the supervisor should document the employee's refusal on the form and have it initialed by a
7.3.1. On-going Coaching and Feedback
Supervisors are encouraged to provide on-going feedback and coaching throughout the performance
7.3.2. SPA Interim Reviews
Supervisors are required to conduct and document an interim appraisal meeting with employees at least
once during the performance cycle, usually at midyear.
7.3.2a. The supervisor reviews the employee's progress toward the expectations and development goals
documented on the work plan, and discusses the current overall rating. This review is intended to be
informal; however, the supervisor must document any performance that falls below the “Good” level
(i.e. document problems or deficiencies), establish an improvement plan for the employee to overcome
the deficiencies, and document the date of the discussion.
7.3.2b. The plan for correcting existing performance problems or deficiencies is to be discussed at the
Interim Review meeting and documented in the space provided for in Part II: Development Plans. The
employee and supervisor must sign the form acknowledging that an interim review meeting took place.
If any comments were added to the form as a result of the interim meeting, the employee must be
provided with a copy of the amended work plan.
7.3.2c. The employee's signature does not imply agreement with the Interim Review; rather it
acknowledges that the review took place and that the employee was given the opportunity to discuss it
with the supervisor. In the event that an employee refuses to sign the Interim Review, the supervisor
should document the employee's refusal on the form and have it initialed by a witness.
7.4.1. SPA Performance Appraisals
7.4.1a. The job performance of each university SPA employee is to be appraised:
(i) Prior to completion of six months of service for new probationary employees
(ii) Once a year for continuing employees, usually at the end of the work cycle
(iii) Prior to transferring to another university department or state agency (Complete and forward to the
hiring department/agency, an NC State University SPA Transfer Appraisal form.)
7.4.1b. Before conducting the appraisal with the employee, the supervisor must obtain management
approval regarding the ratings for each expectation and the overall rating.
7.4.1c. In a private meeting with the employee, the supervisor should discuss each expectation in the
work plan, the actual performance over the course of the performance cycle, the rating for each
expectation, and any needed improvement or area for development for the upcoming performance cycle.
The supervisor must include written comments that support the overall rating. The employee must be
given the opportunity and should be encouraged to write any comments on the SPA Work Plan and
Performance Appraisal form. The employee and supervisor then sign this form.
7.4.1d. The employee must be given a copy of the finalized appraisal form with all comments,
attachments, and signatures. Information may not be added to the completed summary without the
employee's knowledge. Added information must be initialed and dated by the employee, supervisor, and
7.4.1e. The employee's signature does not imply agreement with the performance appraisal; rather it
acknowledges that the appraisal took place and that the employee was given the opportunity to discuss it
with the supervisor. In the event that an employee refuses to sign the Performance Appraisal form, the
supervisor should document the employee's refusal on the form and have it initialed by a witness.
7.4.2. Transfer appraisals
An SPA employee transferring to another university department or state agency must receive a transfer
appraisal from his/her current supervisor to be forwarded to the gaining unit. Likewise, supervisors must
document employees' progress on current work plans in conjunction with the next level manager prior to
leaving a supervisory position. The appraisal should be documented on an NC State SPA Transfer
Appraisal form, with a copy provided to the employee.
7.5. Record Keeping
7.5.1. Personnel Files
A copy of the SPA Work Plan and Appraisal form with all attachments should be kept in the
departmental personnel files. Performance appraisal forms are confidential documents and are subject to
Article 7of Chapter 126 of the General Statutes. The employee must be informed that the forms will be
maintained in employee's departmental personnel file for at least three years and then disposed of in
accordance with General statute 121.5 b and c.
7.5.2. Submission of Annual Appraisal ratings
Annual appraisal ratings will be forwarded to Human Resources at the close of the annual performance
cycle to be included in the Office of State Personnel database.
7.6. Disagreement with Appraisal Ratings
SPA employees have the right to formally dispute annual performance ratings. Disputes must be filed
with the Division of Human Resources within 15 workdays of receipt of the written appraisal and will
be handled in accordance with the SPA Performance Pay Dispute Resolution procedure.