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Home > News > July 2006 > 03 July 2006

Construction company uses online 360 feedback tool

Construction and project management company Mace is using a web-based 360 degree feedback assessment tool to measure the behaviour and performance of its senior managers and project leaders and to help them identify their personal development needs.

Using the new tool - which was developed by Balance Learning - individuals self assess their knowledge, skills and behaviour in key areas and they invite their manager, peers and subordinates - and external contacts such as clients, architects and suppliers - to rate their performance online.

"360 degree feedback gives individuals a clear understanding of their development priorities," said Alex Michael, learning & development manager at Mace.

"In the past, we've used a paper-based questionnaire to generate this feedback but it was so time-consuming and tedious, we had to be selective about who could use it.

"This new online assessment is a rapid and reliable alternative which significantly reduces the time investment.

"We're using it to extend the use of 360 degree feedback to other members of staff, who have not had the chance to benefit from it before."

Mace has incorporated the tool into a leadership development programme which it runs for around 45 senior managers each year. The managers will use the tool to help them identify their learning needs and skills gaps, prior to attending the programme. Six months later, they will undertake the online 360 degree feedback process again, so that Mace can monitor their performance improvement.

"Accurate, constructive feedback can be particularly effective when it is used before and after a training event," said Alex Michael. "We're using it before our leadership programme to highlight the areas that individuals need to focus on. Afterwards, it will show them how much they've improved and what they still need to work on. This will help us to evaluate our training, which is a real benefit."

In addition, 26 project leaders have so far used the online tool to help assess their strengths and weaknesses, for their own career management purposes.

"In our business, it can be difficult for project leaders to gain feedback on their job performance because they work with external contacts and they're always moving on to different sites," said Alex Michael.

"This tool enables them to collect that feedback. As such, it opens up the lines of communication around career development and it also helps us to enhance the motivation and effectiveness of our project teams."

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