Performance Appraisal Instructions for Supervisors

I. Overview

These instructions are designed to assist supervisors with completing their performance appraisal forms.

UCSC utilizes standardized performance appraisal forms for use by all Managers and Supervisors who supervise staff employees.

There are four form options that are to be used for the annual performance appraisal review and the probationary evaluation, along with an employee self-appraisal form.

  • The four appraisal form options differ in content.
  • It is important to read the description of each form to know what type of evaluation system each option provides.
  • Principal Officers may decide which form option will be used within their units. Please check with your Division or Unit Head to ensure you are using the correct form.

Each of the form options includes a section for assessing the performance of managers and supervisors in the areas of:

  • principles of community
  • diversity
  • health and safety
  • leadership
  • performance management


II. Employee Self-Appraisal

Completing the Performance Appraisal Sections

  • The performance appraisal process begins with a dialogue between the supervisor and the employee in preparation for the written performance appraisal and to provide direction to the employee on completing an employee self-appraisal. 
  • The self-appraisal provides an opportunity for the employee to reflect upon their actual work and accomplishments over the previous year.
  • This section may be used in conjunction with all four form options and may be completed in either bulleted or narrative style.

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III. Completing the Performance Appraisal

A.    Cover Sheet

  • The cover sheet contains the overall appraisal rating, an appraisal summary and signature lines.
  • The employee, immediate supervisor, next level of supervision and department head or designee must sign this page. The employee’s signature indicates neither agreement nor disagreement with the appraisal, but is an indication that they have discussed the appraisal with their supervisor.



B.    Performance Appraisal Content
The four appraisal form options differ in content:

  • Option One is structured in a check-box format.
  • Option Two reflects key functions from the job description, and previously set goals and objectives.
  • Option Three is entirely narrative.
  • Option Four allows for a review of essential functions and projects, significant performance dimensions, and goals accomplishment.
  • Self-Appraisal shall be used in conjunction with all four performance appraisal form options listed above. Each employee can print this form separately and complete it upon request from their supervisor.


C.    The Rating System
The five rating categories are the same in all four performance appraisal form options and the categories are aligned with the campus merit rating system.

The five categories are:

  • O = Outstanding: Performance that exceeds expectations and is consistently outstanding.
  • M = More than Satisfactory: Performance that consistently fulfills the job requirements and exceeds expectations.
  • S = Satisfactory: Performance that consistently fulfills the job requirements.
  • I = Improvement Needed: Performance that does not consistently meet the job requirements.
  • U = Unsatisfactory: Performance that consistently fails to meet the job requirements.

D. Knowledge of Job Safety Procedures
This section is used to rate employees on their knowledge of job safety procedures based on the following criteria:

  • The employee knows and follows job safety procedures.
  • The employee attends required health and safety training.
  • The employee proactively promotes safety at work.
  • The employee promptly reports accidents, injuries, close calls, unsafe practices, unsafe conditions, threatening behaviors, and emergencies to supervisor or appropriate university office(s).

E. UCSC Standards for Managers and Supervisors

  • This section is used to assess the performance of managers and supervisors in the areas of principles of community, diversity, health and safety, leadership and performance management.


F. Goals and Expectations for Upcoming Year (Development Plan)

  • This section is used to identify development that sustains, improves and builds performance, and enables the employee to contribute to strategic organizational objectives and foster employee growth.
  • This section should be used to identify goals, objectives, and career development activities and should be completed in collaboration with the employee. 

G. Employee Comments (Optional)

  • At the completion of the final appraisal discussion between the supervisor and the employee, this section may be used by the employee to provide comments on aspects of the appraisal.

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V. Performance Appraisal Rating Definitions

The Rating System and Definitions

The five rating categories are the same in all four performance appraisal options and are aligned with the campus merit rating system. The definition and criteria for each of the ratings are listed below:


O=Outstanding: Performance that exceeds expectations and is consistently outstanding

Employee may meet the following criteria:

  • Significantly and consistently exceeds expectation(s) by producing a high quality and quantity of work.
  • Undertakes additional job functions/duties, through their own initiative, that further the goals of and make significant contributions to the department, division, and organization.
  • Is dependable, highly reliable and follows through on all provided or otherwise undertaken assignments and is effective in a variety of settings including one on one communications, writing skills, correspondence, and public situations.
  • Demonstrates exceptional in-depth knowledge of their job functions/duties and is highly recognized by others within the University community or within their area of expertise as an authority in their area of work.
  • Exhibits model behavior that exemplifies the values and qualities of the organization and that is worthy of emulation by supervisors/staff members.
  • Skillfully and in a highly reliable manner handles multiple and varied types of tasks with competing priorities.
  • Skillfully resolves conflict in the midst of differing opinions by creatively developing a compromise within competing interests.
  • Exhibits teamwork or is a team player in varied settings and influence others to work collaboratively to bring about a positive impact while furthering the goals of the department, division and organization.


M=More than Satisfactory: Performance that consistently fulfills the job requirements and exceeds expectations

Employee may meet the following criteria:

  • Routinely meets and exceeds expectations and role requirements by producing a high quality of work on a consistent basis.
  • Possesses full knowledge of their job functions/duties, as well as, other related aspects of the department, division, and organization, with the ability to explain and articulate such aspects clearly to others.
  • Is dependable, highly reliable and follows through on all assignments.
  • Is recognized by peers, managers, students and other customers/personnel as collaborative, skilled, and reliable.
  • In representing the department, division or organization, effectively interacts with peers, managers, colleagues, other University staff, students, parents, and the public.
  • Consistently exhibits model behavior that exemplifies the values and qualities of the organization.
  • Exhibits teamwork or is a team player in varied settings without prompting and works collaboratively with others.
  • Demonstrates the ability to take on progressive responsibility with a high level of success.

S=Satisfactory: Performance that consistently fulfills the job requirements

Employee may meet the following criteria:

  • Competently performs job functions/duties on a day to day basis and regularly meets expectations and job description requirements with some tasks performed beyond expectations.
  • Consistently demonstrates full knowledge of their job functions/duties.
  • Is recognized by peers, managers, students and other customers/personnel as collaborative, skilled, and reliable.
  • Regularly interacts effectively with peers, managers, colleagues, other University staff, students, parents, and the public.
  • Exhibits teamwork or is a team player in varied settings and works collaborates with others.

I=Improvement Needed: Performance that does not consistently meet the job requirements

Employee may meet the following criteria:

  • Assignments/tasks are not consistently completed timely and accurately even when provided additional training and/or time extensions.
  • Inconsistently demonstrates the skills and abilities to perform job functions/duties or responsibilities satisfactorily.
  • Demonstrates minimal initiative to improve performance on a consistent basis.
  • Requires frequent supervision on routine activities due to low performance or skill level even when provided additional coaching and training opportunities.
  • Engages in less effective or less than positive interactions with peers, colleagues, management, students or members of the University community.

U=Unsatisfactory: Performance that consistently fails to meet the job requirements

Employee may meet the following criteria:

  • Consistently fails to competently complete their assignments/tasks and consistently fails to produce quality work product even when provided additional training and/or time extensions.
  • Consistently fails to meet expectations and job description requirements.
  • Works at a level of minimum standards, with inconsistent productivity.
  • Fails to possess full knowledge of their job functions/duties.
  • Is perceived by peers and managers as non-collaborative and not being a team player.
  • Ineffectively interacts with peers, managers, other University staff, students, parents, or the public.
  • Takes little or no initiative, even with prompting to improve their performance.


VII. Forms/ Resources

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Revised May 2013: C.23