Click here to skip navigation
An official website of the United States Government.

Frequently Asked Questions Performance Management

  • No. The regulations require that agency officials evaluate employee performance periodically against agency-assigned elements and standards. Since agencies cannot assign union work, this work cannot be included as elements and standards and is not subject to appraisal. As a result, employees who spend 100 percent of their time as employee representatives cannot receive a rating of record. Subsequently, since a rating of record is the basis for a performance or rating-based award, these employees are not eligible for performance awards.
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
  • Yes. Regulations allow agencies to grant non-GS employees rating-based awards if the employees are covered by the awards regulations and not otherwise covered by a separate statute that authorizes rating-based awards (e.g., members of the Senior Executive Service).
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
  • Yes. An agency can design procedures for deriving a rating of record that assign greater weight to non-critical elements (which may be used to measure team performance and may affect the rating of record) than to critical elements.  If desired, in summarizing overall performance at or above the "Fully Successful" level, agencies can make distinctions on the basis of team performance alone.
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
  • Whenever an agency proposes to change its performance appraisal system to modify a provision that is subject to a regulatory requirement, the agency must submit the changes to OPM for review and approval prior to implementation.
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
  • Yes. OPM believes it is possible to develop a critical element and standard that holds a supervisor, manager, or team leader responsible for group performance. The element and standard would have to be crafted carefully so that it identifies measurable achievements that would be expected to result when the individual supervisor, manager, or team leader properly exercises his or her leadership responsibilities.
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
  • Yes.  The individual critical element must describe performance that is reasonably measured and controlled at the individual employee's level.  Such performance includes individual contributions to the team, but does not include team performance.
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
  • Non-critical elements are not required but, if used, they must be expressed as elemenst and standards, be included in the employee's performance plan, and be used in assigning a summary level for the rating of record. However, non-critical elements cannot be used as a basis for taking a performance-based action. Other features of non-critical elements:

    • they cannot be used in two-level appraisal programs (i.e., pass/fail)
    • they can be given more weight than critical elements when assigning a summary level above "Unacceptable" (Level 1)
    • they must have a performance standard written for at least one level, the written standard need not describe the "Fully Successful" or equivalent level
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
  • Yes. There are some award restrictions regarding political appointees depending on the nature of their appointment. Non-career SES members are not eligible for performance awards or Presidential Rank Awards. In addition, non-career SES and employees in confidential or policy-determining Schedule C positions may not receive awards during a Presidential election period (June 1 of a Presidential election year through January 20 of the following year). Meanwhile, PAS appointees (employees appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate) may not receive awards at any time.
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
  • No. The level designators (Level 1, Level 2, Level 3, Level 4, Level 5) described in Governmentwide regulations address summary levels only. An agency appraisal program can be designed to appraise elements using a mix of rating levels. For example, critical elements might be appraised at five levels and non-critical elements appraised as pass/fail. A methodology for deriving a summary rating must be in place, however. Agencies have flexibility to determine how their elements are appraised and their particular program design choices that agencies and their subcomponents make should reflect their own situations and needs.
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
  • Honorary awards represent symbolic formal recognition. Items presented as honorary awards must meet all of the following criteria:

    The item must be something that the recipient could reasonably be expected to value, but not something that conveys a sense of monetary value.
    The item must have a lasting trophy value.
    The item must clearly symbolize the employer-employee relationship in some fashion.
    The item must take an appropriate form to be used in the public sector and to be purchased with public funds.
    How well did this answer your question? Submit
    Submitting rating...
    Thank you for your feedback!
    An error occurred while trying to submit your feedback.
    Please try again later.
Control Panel

Unexpected Error

There was an unexpected error when performing your action.

Your error has been logged and the appropriate people notified. You may close this message and try your command again, perhaps after refreshing the page. If you continue to experience issues, please notify the site administrator.

Working...