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Administrative Manual - 208 Employee Performance and Conduct

208.11 Performance Appraisals


It is the policy of JSA to strive to attain the optimal development and utilization of its human resources through an ongoing process of performance review and appraisal. To achieve this objective, JSA requires that a written assessment of each staff member's performance and accomplishments be completed at least annually. In completing performance appraisals for all staff members, managers shall adhere to Jefferson Lab's policies and objectives with regard to equal employment opportunity.


The objectives of the JSA Performance Appraisal program are to encourage performance that contributes to the success of the Laboratory, and to provide meaningful feedback that promotes the professional development of employees. (See Policy 203.04 for Probationary Appraisal guidelines and form.) The Performance Appraisal program is designed to:

    1. Provide a framework for establishing and communicating individual job responsibilities and performance expectations;
    2. Assist in development of plans for professional growth and career development;
    3. Provide a documented record of overall performance and significant accomplishments;
    4. Provide the opportunity for documented self-assessment of overall performance; and
    5. Provide a basis for compensation decisions.

JSA seeks to provide positive reinforcement for high standards of performance on an individual and organizational level. Hence, a staff member's rate of merit salary increase is directly related to his/her level of performance as indicated on the annual appraisal.


JSA's performance rating standards are designed to provide a summary statement of the overall level of performance of the employee for the appraisal cycle. At a minimum, staff are expected to maintain a level of performance that meets objectives established for the appraisal cycle.
The following performance rating standards have been established to evaluate the overall performance of JSA/JLab employees:

5 = Exceeded All Job Expectations

Performance exceeded the goals and standards established for the position. Demonstrated performance is so exceptional that any knowledgeable observer would recognize the overall high quality of the results achieved by the employee.

4 = Exceeded Most Job Expectations

Performance exceeded most goals and standards and successfully achieved all other job requirements that contribute to the success of the Lab.

3 = Achieved Job Expectations

Performance consistently met and may have exceeded some of the goals established for the position. This rating reflects solid and reliable performance; characteristics of a fully qualified, experienced employee who is contributing to the success of the Lab.

2 = Marginally Met Job Expectations

Performance met some job goals, but many requirements of the position were not successfully achieved. Further effort, training, and/or counseling are needed before a higher level can be achieved.

1 = Did Not Meet Job Expectations

Performance failed to meet the goals and standards for the position. Employee requires frequent guidance in completing routine tasks. Immediate and specific development is necessary to bring the employee to a satisfactory performance level.

    1. Annual Appraisal
      1. The performance appraisal cycle for all annual reviews is October 1 to September 30. The performance of each employee shall be formally appraised at least annually consistent with this appraisal cycle.
      2. Supervisors shall prepare an annual appraisal for any employee hired before June 1st. 
    2. Appraisal Following a Performance Deficiency Rating

When the annual appraisal indicates an overall performance rating of "Marginally Met Job Expectations" or "Did Not Meet Job Expectations" a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) will be completed. The supervisor will review the PIP with the employee during the three months from the date of receipt. If performance continues to fail to meet PIP expectations, corrective action shall be initiated by the supervisor after consultation with Human Resources. (See the section of this manual entitled, Corrective Action.)

    1. Appraisal Related to Personnel Actions
      1. When there is a change of supervisor, the new supervisor logs onto the on-line performance appraisal system and determines if job expectations need to be modified. If the change occurred late in the performance review cycle, the new supervisor is expected to gather input on the employee's performance and incorporate it into the review.
      2. For employees whose job duties change significantly, the new supervisor must modify existing job expectations in the on-line performance appraisal system.
      3. For employees newly matrixed to a work unit supervisor, the home unit supervisor must complete a Matrixed/Service Provider Form in consultation with the work unit supervisor and enter it into the on-line performance appraisal system prior to the start date of the matrixed assignment.
    1. Documenting the Performance Appraisal
      1. Each employee shall receive documented evaluation of his/her performance at least annually. Appraisals shall be documented, dated, and signed by the employee and supervisor.  Employees may elect to receive a hard copy of the performance appraisal bearing appropriate management signatures.
      2. All annual performance appraisals, as well as original and closeout PIPs, shall be made part of the employee’s official personnel records which are maintained in Human Resources.  All current performance appraisals are maintained electronically and are accessible at any time.
      3. The entire performance appraisal document is classified as "personnel sensitive" and shall be reviewed only by those with a legitimate business "need to know" (e.g., members of the applicable supervisory chain, designated reviewers, and appropriate Human Resources staff).
      4. Annual appraisals shall be completed using the official JSA on-line appraisal form.
    2. Conducting the Performance Appraisal
      1. Supervisors are responsible for conducting the performance appraisal process in accordance with the guidelines established in this policy. It is incumbent upon supervisors to meet established deadlines for the annual appraisal cycle.
      2. The appraisal shall be completed by the immediate supervisor or the next level supervisor if the immediate supervisor is not available.  Employees supervised by different supervisors during the annual performance appraisal cycle shall be rated by the current supervisor with input from the past supervisor(s).
      3. Employees who work on projects outside their home unit for at least 10% of the appraisal period will have performance feedback, in the form of suggested ratings on expectations, from the supervisor(s) who managed them for the outside project. These expectations and ratings are entered either on a Matrixed/Service Provider Form  by the work unit supervisor if the outside work comprised at least 50% of the employee’s time, or on a Work for Others (WFO) form if it comprised less than 50%.
      4. All employees complete self-assessments of performance for the appraisal cycle which is incorporated as an integral part of the performance appraisal.
      5. The performance appraisal shall indicate the level of performance for the entire appraisal cycle. Supervisors shall incorporate evaluations of any significant work documented on one or more Matrixed/Service Provider Forms .
      6. Staff shall be given an opportunity to make written comments on the performance appraisal following discussion of its contents with the supervisor.
    1. Each year, the Laboratory Director establishes a time-table for steps in completion of annual appraisals for eligible employees. Supervisors are expected to adhere to this schedule.
    2. The following procedures shall apply for conduct of the annual performance appraisal program for JSA employees:
      1. The employee completes his/her self assessment of overall job performance for the appraisal period.
      2. The supervisor prepares an assessment of the employee’s performance during the appraisal period using both core and functional expectations.  The ratings for performance against these expectations produce an overall performance rating.  The appraisal should consider both the self assessment and assessments from work unit supervisors.
      3. The next-level supervisor reviews the appraisal package prepared by the immediate supervisor for content and compatibility with the overall objectives of the organization.   However, the immediate supervisor is ultimately accountable for the rating assigned for the review period.
      4. The Division convenes a Calibration Panel to ensure that objective measures of evaluation are employed and are compatible with the overall evaluation objectives of the Laboratory.
      5. Any issues with regard to change in performance ratings along the management review chain shall be resolved before the appraisal is presented to the staff member.
      6. The employee can view a copy of the appraisal and all related documents, with appropriate management signatures, as well as a copy of the performance expectations established for the upcoming appraisal period using the on-line system.

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