Hike story: It’s all pre-decided

April 12th, 2012

It is that time of the year again when employees are handed over sheets of paper to fill in and appraise themselves.

While this exercise reminds many to update their CVs, others decide flaunt their job offers at this opportune moment.

My HR executive friends tell me that the entire appraisal exercise is nothing but humbug. For largely, appraisals are pre-decided.

“Actually, it is always decided in advance, who will get a promotion and how much increment will come  your way. If you are the boss’ blue-eyed boy, even if you have worked less than your neighbour, you have your way,” says an HR executive in a media company.

In her organisation, she says candidly, a person’s increment is largely decided in the smoking zone. “As and when my boss goes for a smoke, rest of my colleagues follow. Smoking zone is a good area to network with the reticent bosses. In fact, many who don’t smoke also go to register their names in his good books,” she says.

But if you question the HR heads on this, they rubbish it. Though off the record, some do agree.

“Who will get what kind of an increment is not what I decide. I just execute what I get from the respective department heads. Of course keeping in mind the budget,” says an HR friend at a pharma company.

Many companies will give you a big raise when you join them and then, every appraisal season, you will be given a token increment. The patent line is: performance was below expectation or not up to the mark.

I remember, in one of my previous organisations, employees had even been dished out an annual raise of Rs 100!

And at another media organisation, though the employees have been informed of a possible slowdown and thus no increment this year, a list has already been drawn of who will get how much.

But this is not the case with every company. At many organisations, appraisals are a very transparent affair and have made people stick to their jobs.

So when your appraisals this time round would not be as per your expectation, and your HR head will give you all possible gyan– on how fair and employee-friendly the  organisation is…you know if to take it with a pinch or a truckload of salt.

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