If your business wants to succeed in this day and age, it's not enough to hire people and simply tell them to do work until it's time to go home. In order to be fully engaged in their day-to-day, employees need motivation, guidance and continuous feedback on how they're performing.
In other words, they need solid goals.
This is easier said than done, of course. Managers and HR personnel need to ensure everyone's goals are calibrated correctly—not so out of reach that they're impossible to achieve, but not so easily attainable that workers can accomplish them with little effort. Then there's the issue of how progress toward these goals is actually going to be tracked when management has a million other priorities that need their attention. Multiply by hundreds or even thousands of employees, and things start to get really messy, really quickly.
Which is why, if your company is having problems staying on top of employee goal management, you should consider investing in dedicated employee goal setting software: platforms designed specifically to automate processes related to employee goal creation, tracking and analysis.
In this Buyer's Guide, we'll go over everything you need to know before purchasing employee goal setting software to help you choose the best product to fit your needs.
Here's what we'll cover:
What Is Employee Goal Setting Software?
Common Employee Goal Setting Software Functionality
Employee Goal Setting Software Pricing
Key Considerations for Employee Goal Setting Software
Final Tips for First-Time Buyers
Employee goal setting software is a type of performance management software focused on helping companies set and track goals for every worker in their organization, from the fresh-faced intern to the CEO. These systems can also be referred to as “goal management software" or “goal tracking software."
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Goal setting software can be purchased stand-alone (i.e., “best-of-breed") or as part of a more comprehensive talent management suite. It helps facilitate more transparency for workers and managers about goal progression and better alignment of individual goals with overall company strategy.
The look and feel of different employee goal setting software systems can vary greatly, but a lot of products share similar functionality. Here are some common features to look out for:
|Goal creation||Create goals, detail desired outcomes and set deadlines for accomplishing them.|
|Goal tracking||Similar to project tracking systems, workers can update their progress toward their assigned goals.|
|OKR implementation||Objectives & Key Results (OKR) is a popular leadership strategy for setting and communicating company goals.|
|Goal dashboards||Get a high-level visual overview of team member goal progression and areas that need manager attention.|
|Continuous feedback||Coworkers, managers and otherwise can write comments on goals, giving praise or explaining why a goal was not hit.|
|Performance review integration||Integrate goal accomplishments into employee evaluation during performance reviews.|
|Goal analytics and reporting||Analyze goal performance trends over time and generate standardized reports for different purposes.|
Another important feature to consider, but one that will vary more between offerings, is whether your goal setting software integrates with your company's favorite collaboration tool, be it Slack, Google Hangouts or otherwise. This integration can help bring important goal setting and management functionality to a system your workers already use every day.
Perhaps the biggest factor with any new software purchase is the cost. Fortunately, many employee goal setting software systems are very affordable in order to cater to even the smallest businesses. Still, sticker shock can happen if buyers don't know what to expect with their purchase.
Because most employee goal setting systems are cloud-based, the software is often sold on a subscription basis. That means you'll be paying on a monthly or annual basis, based on either how many users are accessing the software or how many employees you have at your company. Pricing can also fluctuate based on how advanced the functionality of the product you purchase.
When evaluating different employee goal setting platforms and talking to software vendors, here are a few things you should keep in mind:
Here are some final tips if you're purchasing employee goal setting software for the first time:
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