The process known as performance review, also called performance appraisal and performance measurement, can refer to two different but related evaluative processes that occur within a business organization: at a process or organizational level and at the individual employee level.


At both the individual and organizational levels, the review process typically involves a combination of intangible (qualitative) measures and tangible (quantitative) measures. Using tangible measurements in a performance review first requires defining the nature of such measurements.


At the organizational level, for example, reducing the costs of operating the business has a tangible impact on the organization’s overall bottom line, as does an overall increase in employee productivity, as indicated at the Decision Sciences website. A performance review at the organizational level may, then, try to determine the productivity savings of implementing a new technology, such as a handheld scanner system in a retail store.


In performance reviews of individual employees, the organization uses criteria with clearly measurable characteristics, such as typing or data entry work that is quantifiable in terms of words or characters per minute. Tardiness and absence rates also qualify as tangible measures because clear documentation of these incidents exists.