Self-assessment is usually part of an employee’s 180 or 360-degree feedback. Also, employees can carry it out on their own when they believe their professional development is not going according to expectations. It makes a great tool for career planning. It is worthwhile to construct a sheet with questions and try to give objective answers. A descriptive self-assessment helps to point out our strengths and weaknesses and will indicate our career aspirations and plans.

Employee self-assessment – table of contents:

  1. Self-assessment as part of employee evaluation
  2. Purpose and evaluation criteria
  3. Elements of self-assessment
  4. Advantages and disadvantages of self-assessment
  5. Summary
  6. Check out Firmbee to stay up to date with your employees’ responsibilities

Self-assessment as part of employee evaluation

Employee self-assessment is usually part of a descriptive employee evaluation implemented by the employer. Employee performance appraisal is a tool for control, helps to develop competencies, achieve better work results and is an invaluable resource for supervisors and HR. In employee evaluations conducted by the 180-degree method, the source of information is the feedback from the supervisor and self-assessment. In contrast, in 360-degree evaluation, feedback comes from four different sources: superiors, colleagues, subordinates and self-assessment.

The performance appraisal is usually systematic and periodic. It features as a diagnostic tool to measure whether a person meets the requirements to hold a certain position and correctly performs their duties. Based on the assessment, it is possible to diagnose areas that need correction and create a plan for further development. Periodic evaluation of an employee is also a great opportunity to check whether a person can stay objective in self-assessment and handle constructive criticism.

Purpose and evaluation criteria

The primary purpose of an employee evaluation is to determine the extent to which the employee meets his or her responsibilities and whether his or her professional needs are aligned with the company’s most important goals. If a mismatch is found between the evaluated employee and their position, corrective measures are taken in this regard. On the other hand, if the employee self-assessment comes out positive then the employee’s knowledge and skills can prove handy in training and adapting newly hired personnel. A positive evaluation is also the basis for bonuses, raises as well as promotions.

The type and nature of the position determine the selection of particular criteria that become the basis for evaluation. The most common areas to evaluate are:

  • Expertise, competencies and skills,
  • Timeliness of tasks performed,
  • Time management, ability to plan and anticipate future events,
  • Organization, self-discipline and their impact on productivity and efficiency at work,
  • Communication and cooperation skills, establishing interpersonal relationships,
  • Knowledge of procedures and applicable regulations and how to comply with them,
  • Professional development and skill enhancement.

Elements of self-assessment

A descriptive employee self-assessment enables the analysis of an employee’s strengths and weaknesses. By pointing out past successes and professional failures, it is easier to see new career paths and directions. A properly drafted self-assessment will be a complement during the periodic evaluation interview. The feedback received from the supervisor will chart the current position and professional situation of the employee. When conducting a self-assessment, it is crucial to focus on one’s performance by indicating whether it has improved or deteriorated. It is also necessary to identify advantages and disadvantages at work.

In the case of a self-assessment that is part of a periodic employee evaluation, the employee is given a ready-made sheet with questions. The key elements of the self-assessment are:

  • Professional achievements and failures: What professional achievements are you most proud of? What was your biggest failure?
  • Strengths and weaknesses: Do you have qualities that distinguish you positively from other employees? What qualities might prevent you from pursuing a career?
  • Cooperation and interpersonal relations: What behavior bothers you the most at work? What good and bad things would your co-workers say about you?
  • Employee’s career goals in the short and long term: What is your career goal in the coming months? In what position do you see yourself in five years?
  • A summary of your career so far: Is the position you currently hold satisfactory to you?

Advantages and disadvantages of self-assessment

Objective self-assessment of an employee’s competence comes about as a troublesome task, mainly because of the need to maintain neutrality when assessing oneself. As with any method of evaluation, one can point to its benefits and drawbacks. The strengths of employee self-assessment are the ability to improve productivity and efficiency at work, the diagnosis of the employee’s development potential, the possibility of bridging the competency gap between individuals in the same positions, getting a picture of the personality traits of a given employee and learning about the employee’s approach to self-evaluation. In addition, self-assessment streamlines the communication process and shapes pro-development attitudes by confronting the results of the self-assessment with those of the supervisor.

In contrast, the weaknesses of self-esteem are primarily related to the difficulty of evaluating ourselves. We usually perceive ourselves and our performance much more positively than our superiors and colleagues. In addition, it is difficult for us to admit when we have made a mistake. It is human nature that we always want to be perceived positively. In case of failure, we will blame other people or situations. Another negative aspect of self-evaluation is that some employees treat it mainly as a tool of control, as something that can limit them and deprive them of their rights.


Loyal and competent employees are the most valuable resource of any organization. Self-assessment, which is part of employee evaluation, makes it possible to select the best employees and guide them to an adequate career path. In this way, the employer can obtain efficient and effective personnel who will become satisfied with the conditions of employment and will bind themselves to the company for many years.

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Author: Nicole Mankin

HR manager with an excellent ability to build a positive atmosphere and create a valuable environment for employees. She loves to see the potential of talented people and mobilize them to develop.