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With so many different performance appraisal software available, figuring out which is right for you is tough. You know you want software to help you track, analyze, and evaluate employee performance systematically, but you need to figure out which system is best. In this post, I'll help you make this choice easier by sharing my insights on the best performance appraisal software to create a fair and efficient performance management process based on my personal experience preparing over 1,000 performance reviews.

What is Performance Appraisal Software?

Performance appraisal software is a digital tool that helps HR specialists and managers evaluate their employees performance efficiently and fairly. It uses automations to make the appraisal process more efficient and less biased and more data-driven. It also offers the ability to set and track specific goals, and feedback mechanisms to offer structured and actionable recommendations.

Performance appraisal software helps HR specialists and business managers understand how efficient their teams are. These solutions help leaders assess the output of individuals and departments, allowing them to make objective, data-driven decisions regarding their employees that are free from unconscious bias. Ultimately, they help organizations build a stronger workforce by identifying areas for future growth and skill development.

Overviews Of The 10 Best Performance Appraisal Software

Here’s a brief description of each performance appraisal software to showcase each tool’s best use case, their noteworthy features, and pros & cons. I’ve also included screenshots to give a snapshot of their user interface too.

1

Trakstar

Best performance appraisal software for skill gap identification

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.3
188 reviews

Free demo available

Pricing upon request

Trakstar is an employee performance management software that helps managers identify skill gaps and recommend personalized training modules. 

Why I picked Trakstar: Trakstar helps you assess your employees and provide actionable advice on how they can reach their career goals. The platform helps you measure employee competency for over 100 distinct competencies, enabling team leaders to identify skill gaps. Team leaders can also build training modules and courses for employees to help them develop their skills. 

Trakstar enables managers and HR professionals to schedule regular check-ins, build improvement plans to increase the effectiveness of their team members, and collect data to make business decisions. The platform makes it easy to track the performance of all employees, and the automated reporting feature helps you understand how your strategies affect your workforce, so it’s ideal for medium and large organizations with a lot of employees. 

Trakstar Standout Features and Integrations

Features include automation, succession planning, goal tracking, engagement surveys, competency assessments, and employee coaching. 

Integrations are available natively with many tools, including ADP Workforce, Google Workspace, Paylocity, Salesforce, and Slack. 

Pros

  • Efficient learning management system
  • Great for employee development
  • Encourages instant feedback

Cons

  • Some automated emails may end up in the spam folder
  • Cannot sort training modules by category
2

PerformYard

Best performance appraisal software for self-assessments

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.7
807 reviews

Free demo available

From $5-$10/user/month

PerformYard is a cloud-based performance management system that helps businesses to identify top performers based on self-assessment metrics. 

Why I picked PerformYard: PerformYard allows employees to set their own goals and track their progress. The software makes it easy for team members to access and complete self-assessment forms, and it compiles the data into actionable progress reports. A user’s growth progress can be shared with co-workers, which is a great way for employees to motivate themselves and summarize their accomplishments for others. 

Managers and HR professionals who use PerformYard save time when running recurrent review cycles. The platform’s automation feature enables you to schedule recurring reviews ahead of time, and the solution’s notification system lets you know when you have to complete manual steps. 

PerformYard is a good HR solution for organizations that value employee growth. 

PerformYard Standout Features and Integrations

Features include goal management, continuous feedback, 360 degree reviews, one-on-one feedback, quarterly check-ins, and self-assessments. 

Integrations are available natively with multiple apps, including ADP, BambooHR, Gusto, Rippling, and Workday. 

Pros

  • Encourages employee coaching
  • Benchmarking tool allows managers to compare employee evaluations
  • Easy task and goal tracking

Cons

  • Every user creates their own goals without templates, which can lead to confusing results
  • Surveys cannot be edited after launch
3

Leapsome

Best performance appraisal software for automated engagement surveys

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.8
1472 reviews

14-day free trial

From $8/user/month

Leapsome is an HR platform that helps organizations assess employee engagement and make data-driven decisions to increase employee retention. 

Why I picked Leapsome: Leapsome is a customizable HR system that helps you simplify your performance evaluation processes with templates. The solution enables you to create templates for all your needs, such as weekly 1:1s, daily huddles, quarterly performance analyses, and so on. You can choose your to-do items, set your priorities, sync the platform with your calendar and mailing software, and rely on its notifications to perform time-sensitive tasks. 

Leapsome’s surveys are well structured, encouraging users to rate their colleagues and share feedback. The survey structure helps raters to express their thoughts without losing time, so the evaluation process is not intrusive. 

Thanks to its user-friendly pulse surveys, Leapsome is a great app for HR teams that want to improve their company culture. 

Leapsome Standout Features and Integrations

Features include automation, new hire onboarding tools, a skill framework, 1:1s, team meetings, and public and private recognition. 

Integrations are available natively with dozens of solutions, including HiBob, Microsoft Active Directory, Rippling, Slack and Workday. 

Pros

  • Efficient employee coaching tool
  • Searchable assessment database
  • Good goal tracking features

Cons

  • Colleague feedback is auto-set as private, so managers may miss it unless the default setting is changed
  • Notes can be carried from one meeting to another, so separating them at the end of the day can be confusing
4

Lattice

Best performance appraisal software for one-on-one feedback

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.7
3717 reviews

Free demo available

From $11/user/month

Lattice is a performance appraisal solution that helps businesses schedule, run, and manage 1:1 feedback. 

Why I picked Lattice: Lattice is a lightweight performance management tool that integrates with dozens of solutions. The software enables your team members to provide feedback in real-time from wherever they work, and makes it easy for them to share a few words about a co-worker or manager. The solution also enables employees to request feedback, set goals, and take ownership of their performance development. 

Lattice enables HR professionals and managers to schedule and run pulse surveys, objectives and key results (OKR) reviews, and one-on-one interviews. The platform’s 1:1s are easy to manage by both team leaders and employees, and you can connect your other surveys and reviews to the 1:1 meeting agenda so they can serve as talking points or reminders. 

Thanks to its variety of helpful features, Lattice is a great HR software for businesses of all sizes. 

Lattice Standout Features and Integrations

Features include 360-degree feedback, one-on-one interviews, goal setting, public recognition, continuous feedback, and analytics. 

Integrations are available natively with hundreds of solutions, including BambooHR, Jira, Microsoft Teams, Okta, Slack, and Zenefits. 

Pros

  • Great one-on-one review feature
  • You can add comments and action items to reviews
  • Enables employees to provide discreet feedback directly to managers

Cons

  • Using pulse, weekly, 1:1s, and OKR reminders can disrupt your employees
  • Interface can be a little cumbersome at times, nesting some features under multiple menus and submenus
5

ClearCompany

Best performance appraisal software for pre-built and customizable employee evaluations

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.6
247 reviews

Free demo available

Pricing upon request

ClearCompany is a configurable HR management system that helps companies identify top performers using their own evaluation processes and criteria. 

Why I picked ClearCompany: ClearCompany is a great performance management solution for organizations that want to build their own reviews and evaluations. Besides offering pre-built review templates, the software also gives you the ability to build assessments from scratch and create your own templates. 

ClearCompany enables you to build your own forms with different sections, questions, measurement scales, and multi-stage evaluation processes. You can add timed stages, approval breaks, and track your team’s evaluation progress. 

Thanks to the customizable assessments it helps you create, the system is a great option for organizations that have a highly-trained workforce and need specific evaluations. ClearCompany is best for companies based in the U.S. and Canada.

ClearCompany Standout Features and Integrations

Features include new hire reviews, performance reviews, competency and role-based reviews, 360-degree reviews, and time-based reviews. 

Integrations are available natively with dozens of tools, including AccuTrace, BambooHR, Checkr, Glassdoor, and Indeed. 

Pros

  • Highly customizable evaluations
  • Helpful goal-tracking and alignment tools
  • Real-time feedback

Cons

  • The interface looks somewhat dated
  • No boolean search
6

Paylocity

Best for encouraging employees to be active in their growth

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.5
1933 reviews

Free demo available

Pricing upon request

Paylocity is a cloud-based human capital management (HCM) platform that combines HR, payroll, talent management, benefits administration, employee experience, and workforce management functionalities into an all-in-one solution.

Why I picked Paylocity: The performance management features of this software are designed to encourage employees to take a more active role in their development and growth. Employee self-evaluation is facilitated through the platform and employees can track their progress with the journal feature, adding text or video to keep a record of their accomplishments and milestones.

Performance assessment templates give a clear outline of what's being evaluated and help managers spot opportunities for promotions and upskilling. Managers and employees can set performance goals together in the software, and come back to them regularly to maintain alignment. 360 feedback helps create a clearer, more well-rounded assessment of employee performance.

Paylocity Standout Features & Integrations

Features include 360 feedback, performance appraisal templates, employee journal, video and text notes, self-evaluations, goal setting and tracking, employee recognition, and peer recognition.

Integrations include Azure, Clover, Concur, Expensify, Microsoft Dynamics 365, Oracle NetSuite, QuickBooks, Sage Intacct, Square, Xero, 24HourFlex, and 4MyBenefits. An API can also be used to configure additional integrations.

Pros

  • Robust, all-in-one platform for HR
  • Employees are encouraged to take action on their goals
  • Peer recognition and feedback are facilitated

Cons

  • Steep learning curve, complex system
  • Limited customization options
7

Kallidus Perform

Best performance appraisal software for self-development

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.5
60 reviews

Free demo available

Pricing upon request

Kallidus Perform is an employee performance review software that helps organizations build a culture of self-development. 

Why I picked Kallidus Perform: Kallidus Perform offers a variety of features that help managers improve their company culture. The software makes the self-development process fun and accessible with gamification features that encourage employees to complete courses and training modules. Managers can identify skill gaps through surveys, assessments, and one-on-ones, and set specific objectives for their employees, helping them progress toward their career goals. Employees can also browse the content library and enroll in courses on their own. 

Kallidus Perform allows your team members to manage their goal progression and development. Those who complete courses receive awards and can share their achievements with their colleagues for a motivation boost. 

Kallidus Perform is great at motivating your teammates to learn more, so it’s a good choice for organizations of all sizes that value self-development. 

Kallidus Perform Standout Features and Integrations

Features include continuous feedback, goal tracking, goal alignment, flexible reviews, and interactive learning. 

Integrations are available natively with multiple solutions, including Meta for Business, Microsoft Outlook, Natural HR, Reward Gateway, and Tazio.

Pros

  • Good learning hub
  • Mobile-friendly UI
  • Easy to create review templates

Cons

  • Lack short-term action items you can track and offer feedback on, such as day-to-day tasks
  • Notification system can be buggy at times
8

Ceridian Dayforce

Best for performance management and employee learning in one

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.2
784 reviews

60-day free trial

Pricing upon request

Ceridian Dayforce is a cloud-based human capital management (HCM) solution designed to unify multiple functionalities, including human resources (HR), workforce management, and talent management in one place.

Why I picked Ceridian Dayforce: In addition to payroll and benefits tools, you can also find talent management features to support ongoing employee development and performance appraisal in the software. Employees can set goals in the system that align with team, cross-functional, and organizational objectives. Performance reviews can be completed by employees, their peers, and their manager for a holistic perspective, and personalized development plans can be built collaboratively by employees and managers.

What's unique about the software is its learning and development tools. Online learning, webinars, and training can be facilitated through the platform to develop key skill sets and maintain regulations. Employees can also engage in peer-to-peer coaching and development, adding content and exchanging information with one another for learning purposes. All of these features contribute to a culture of growth, encouraging improved performance and ongoing development among staff.

Ceridian Dayforce Standout Features & Integrations

Features include self-evaluations, peer evaluations, and manager evaluations; cascading goals; customized development plans; online learning, webinars, and in-person learning tools; peer-to-peer knowledge exchange; and dedicated learning channels.

Integrations include Beekeeper, Brainier, Databasics, DocuSign, Emburse, Equifax, First Advantage, Oracle NetSuite, Salary.com, Talent Plus, Truework, and Verified First.

9

Cornerstone OnDemand

Best for employee skill mapping and creating growth plans

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.2
6 reviews

Free demo available

Pricing upon request

Cornerstone OnDemand is an all-in-one platform dedicated to employee growth and development.

Why I picked Cornerstone OnDemand: This software enables you to design and develop a performance management process that's customized to your organization. It allows you to automate the basic review process and integrate it with your company or team goals and competency assessments. Employees and managers can build development plans that align growth goals with the company trajectory, and the software facilitates feedback and check-ins on progress.

A unique feature the software offers is its skills graph. The tool is designed to help leaders spot employee potential and uncover skills gaps within their workforce through 180-degree and 360-degree feedback, self-evaluations, and custom-built competency models. It helps managers notice future potential leaders and opportunities for lateral and upward mobility at the organization. This helps employees see a future with your company, thereby reducing turnover and attrition.

Cornerstone OnDemand Standout Features & Integrations

Features include company-wide goal alignment, performance reviews and competency assessments, skills mapping, compensation management, observation checklists, feedback exchange, check-ins, job descriptions, employee engagement surveys, and individual development plans.

Integrations are not currently listed by the company.

Pros

  • Intuitive and friendly user interface
  • Robust, feature-rich tool
  • Active community for support and ideas

Cons

  • Observation checklists are not easily customizable
  • Requires training to onboard staff
10

Engagedly

Best for streamlining the employee review process

This is an aggregated rating for this tool including ratings from Crozdesk users and ratings from other sites.
4.2
261 reviews

Free demo available

Pricing available upon request

Engagedly is a cloud-based performance appraisal software that helps HR professionals oversee employee performance, growth, and progress in real time. Users can track talent information, provide ongoing feedback, identify areas of skill development, and create organizational goals. It allows managers to design development plans and career paths for employees to continue to grow, learn, and succeed within the organization.

The software offers a real-time feedback mechanism that enables businesses to file, access, and view performance feedback data from managers and employees. The software provides a clear analysis of an employee's strengths and weaknesses based on performance overviews, which helps them map their individual development goals. The feature allows employees to identify lacking skills, enhancing their growth potential and increasing productivity. Engagedly also provides personalized learning paths to help employees develop skills and close competency gaps.

Engagedly allows businesses to view insights from various perspectives—direct managers, customers, peers, and direct staff. This feature ensures the feedback process gets a more thorough outlook and enables businesses to identify hidden talent or skills that may lead to promotion opportunities. The software lets companies generate individual goals for each employee based on their skill gaps and track progress regularly with updated reports. Tracking progress helps compare employee performance against business goals leading to performance improvement.

The platform provides a framework for managers to conduct employee performance reviews quickly and efficiently and offers customizable templates and automated workflows to streamline the review process. Its recognition and rewards feature allows managers and peers to publicly recognize an employee's excellent work, boosting employee morale and motivation to perform even better.


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Other Options

Here are a few more options that didn’t make the best performance appraisal software list:

  1. Workday

    Best performance appraisal software for guided career development paths

  2. Namely

    Best performance management in an all-in-one HR tool

  3. bob

    Best performance appraisal software for 360-degree performance reviews

  4. Betterworks

    Best for increasing the frequency of performance conversations

  5. Eden

    Best performance appraisal software for peer reviews

  6. BambooHR

    Best performance appraisal software for automated review cycles

  7. IntelliHR

    Best performance appraisal software for actionable performance insights

  8. eloomi

    Best performance appraisal software for continuous performance improvement

  9. Primalogik

    Best performance appraisal software for real-time feedback

  10. Zoho People

    Best performance appraisal software for competency tracking

Selection Criteria

Wondering how I selected the best performance appraisal software for this article? Here’s a summary of my selection and evaluation criteria: 

  1. User Interface (UI): Performance appraisal tools should help your team perform their tasks without wasting time. I selected solutions that offer clean, intuitive interfaces, so your team members can find the right functionalities and share feedback, rate their co-workers, and review each others’ performance. 
  2. Usability: Performance appraisal solutions should be easy to use because they should enable all your team members to share continuous feedback, no matter their tech skills. I chose software solutions that simplify the performance review process and encourage your team to share their opinions at regular intervals. 
  3. Software Integrations: Performance appraisal shouldn’t be siloed. It should be an integral part of your review process. As a result, I chose performance appraisal tools that integrate with the rest of your human resources tools, such as your human capital management (HCM) tool, human resource information system (HRIS), talent management solution, and so on. 
  4. Value for Price: Most performance appraisal tools offer a wide variety of features and functionalities. I selected solutions that help you achieve multiple goals so you can get a nice return on your investment. 

Performance Appraisal Software: Frequently Asked Questions

What is a performance appraisal?

A performance appraisal is a review of an individual’s work performance and productivity. It involves assessing their skills, achievements, personal growth, and progress towards predefined goals and objectives.

Are there different types of performance appraisals?

Performance appraisals can be divided in:

  • Self-appraisals
  • Peer appraisals
  • 360-degree appraisals
  • Culture-fit appraisals
  • Trait-based appraisals
  • Role-based appraisals

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using performance appraisal software?

The main advantage of using performance appraisal software is that it ultimately leads to an improvement in your team’s performance. By identifying your team’s strengths, weaknesses, and potential, you can take corrective actions and create workflows that improve your team’s efficiency and output.

The main disadvantage of using performance appraisal software is that it can lead to unconscious bias. Raters can unconsciously rank employees based on their historical performance rather than actual results, so they can end up favoring some team members and underrating others.

Other Resources

Feedback helps you boost your team’s performance and improve your company culture. And performance appraisal software can help you keep track of your team’s evolution and respond to it proactively. As Lindsay Gainor from Kent Power said

The more frequent the feedback, the less heavy and daunting the formal performance conversations become. The greatest tool for this is having a 1:1 with each person on your team on a regular, frequent basis. This allows you to connect deeper than the day-to-day conversations in passing. It is a time to check in personally, talk about performance wins and challenges, and discuss development plans.

Not sure which one of these solutions is right for your needs? We have an article on How To Choose The Right Performance Management System For You that can help. 

Also, to help you get the most out of your performance appraisal software, I recommend reading these guides too:

Lastly, if you want to receive expert advice on how to motivate your employees directly in your inbox, subscribe to the People Managing People newsletter

By Kim Behnke

Kim Behnke is an HR Tool Expert & Writer for People Managing People. She draws on her 9 years of human resources experience and her keen eye for systematic processes to support her analyses of the top HR tools on the market. She is passionate about maximizing efficiencies and streamlining workflows to ensure internal systems run smoothly. Kim's HR experience includes recruitment, onboarding, performance management, training and development, policy development and enforcement, and HR analytics. She also has degrees in psychology, writing, publishing, and technical communication, and recently completed a Certified Digital HR Specialist program through the Academy to Innovate HR. When away from her desk, she can usually be found outside tending to her ever-expanding garden.