8-Step 360 Degree Feedback Process Timeline

Written by Gil Gruber, Explorance.

The 360 degree feedback process may vary slightly from company to company, however, each follow a similar schedule. Below we identify the 360 review timeline and give you an idea of how long each step might take within your organization. From communicating the 360 process to re-evaluating participants, you can use this schedule to develop your implementation plan.

  1. Communicating 360:

    As we have mentioned previously, it is crucial that you communicate the process to all stakeholders. You will want to communicate the purpose of the 360, explain the process and how feedback will be gathered and utilized.

    Time: It could take 1-3 weeks to communicate the process if in-person meetings are used with employees, supervisors, managers and raters.

  2. Selecting raters:

    Selecting raters is one of the most important steps of the 360 feedback process. Participants will need to choose enough feedback providers to ensure that the data is comprehensive and relevant. The number of raters included will depend on the employee’s job function and working relationships.

    Time: It may take 1-2 weeks to choose raters including supervisors, direct reports, peers and perhaps external clients.

  3. Distributing surveys:

    Using an online 360 feedback system will allow you to distribute the questionnaires quickly. Participants will receive email notifications with instructions on how to start and complete the 360 feedback process. At this stage, participants will assign questionnaires to their selected raters.

    Time: It may take up to 1 week to distribute the survey.

  4. Completing questionnaires:

    Having participants fill out and complete the review is the longest stage in the process. The length of this step can depend on the number of raters involved, the employee’s job role and on the organization. It is highly recommended that you establish deadlines at the outset of the process, to ensure all raters have completed their survey in a timely manner.

    Time: It may take 2-4 weeks before all of the feedback is completed.

  5. Producing reports:

    Once all of the feedback providers have completed their questionnaires a confidential report is produced. Depending on your company’s feedback delivery plan, the reports may be sent directly to participants or results given in a one-on-one feedback session.

    Time: Using an online system will allow for the quick production of detailed 360 feedback reports, 1-2 days.

  6. Facilitating feedback:

    It is recommended that confidential feedback meetings be arranged for each participant undergoing the 360 review. Feedback may be given in these sessions by the employee’s manager or by a coach. These meetings allow for greater understanding of the feedback report and an opportunity to discuss strengths and areas for improvement.

    Time: Depending on how in-depth you’d like the feedback sessions to be, each meeting could take 1-2 hours per participant.

  7. Completing development plan:

    Creating the development plan for each participant in the review is the essence of the process. The feedback obtained from the 360 evaluation becomes the basis for an actionable development plan. Reviewing the areas for improvement will identify key areas for development for the employee. This gives the employee the chance to improve their skills by using opportunities such as training, workshops, conferences, coaching, mentoring, etc.

    Time: The completion of the development plan could take 1-2 weeks.

  8. Re-evaluating:

    It is important to establish 360 degree feedback in your organization as a process and not a one-off event. To do so, you should clearly communicate at the start of the process that subsequent reviews will happen each year. Since specific goals and opportunities were outlined in the development plan, it makes sense to check in on the progress of these items. Re-evaluating participants enables you to see if any changes have occurred and also provides the chance for new feedback.

    Time: Re-evaluations should occur 8-12 months after the first 360 review.

Does the above timeline accurately reflect how the 360 process works in your organization? Let us know!

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