Case Study: Performance & Development Process Design

Our Client is an information technology recruitment and labour hire organisation based in Sydney with national and international presence.


The organisation is made up of several acquired businesses as well as the parent company and is embarking on a strategy to ignite the potential of their internal expertise to maximise their reach of the recruitment market. They realised their need to clarify expectations and drive performance in a way that recognised that they had people with good qualities who had developed poor habits over time. They therefore, wanted an enabling process that focused on the conversations around performance rather than simply an annual checking process that appeared punitive.

Our Approach

Working with agreed design principles, we developed the Continuous Conversations framework which included:

  • A Capability Framework
  • A conversation process
  • Supporting guides and tools
  • Capability uplift program

The Tools

Smart Conversations – A range of mandatory and non-mandatory conversations that focusses attention on performance goals, actions and results in a way that is motivational and easily driven.  A way of engaging and connecting team members and leaders through an annual conversation calendar.

Capabilities Worth Conquering Framework – A structured tool used to identify and develop the skills, attributes and behaviours that are most critical to success across the organisation. The focus is on capabilities that will drive excellence, now and into the future. A suite of 12 capabilities have been identified but between 6-8 capabilities will be most relevant to each role.

A series of Conversation Planner Templates – Templates provide questions and conversation starters that enable some structure and consistency for each conversation as well as clarity for both managers and team members on the expected outcomes and flow for the conversation. They also provide a written record for both parties to follow through with commitments and ideas.

The Outcome

The client has taken this content to add to their HR information system. Being a technology based company, they will utilise their current platforms to enable easy access and use for Managers and Team Members.

Capability uplift training will proceed the rollout of the next conversation cycle, mid 2016.  This training will include instruction on how to use the system as well as skills training around areas like handling difficult conversations, continuous coaching and feedback, goal setting etc.  The program will be further supported by the Continuous Conversation Framework Support Guide.

While our client is still in the midst of broader roll out and implementation, early feedback indicates that people are keen to use the new processes and systems and were pleased to have involvement in the design and development.

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