How To Make Weekly Check-ins Productive

Tired of having unproductive weekly employee check-ins? This guide will help you have constructive & effective employee check-ins

September 29, 2022
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The workplace is changing, and so are the expectations of employees and employers.

As an employer, you want to oversee work output, boost employee engagement and create a productive environment for your employees. You also want to show them that their opinions matter and that they can be heard when giving feedback.

Productive weekly check-in meetings make it easier to achieve all these and more. 

So, how do you make your weekly check-in more productive? Let's dive in!

Why Are Weekly Check-ins Important?

Weekly Check-ins are essential for staying abreast with the progress made on tasks delegated to employees within your organization. They provide an avenue to interact with employees and discuss details about an ongoing project. 

Employees can highlight the milestones and difficulties in weekly check-in meetings, clearly showing the current work status and room for performance improvement

In the workplace, where remote work is gradually becoming a norm, weekly check-ins are necessary to prevent things from falling through the cracks. 

Here are five reasons why you need weekly check-ins:

  1. Provide Insights

Weekly check-in with managers allows managers and employees to get up-to-speed on urgent issues that require urgent attention. This clarity gives managers valuable information that helps build effective strategies. 

  1. Employee Motivation

Weekly check-in help to keep employees motivated and happy. It provides a platform for employees to share their wins, air their concerns and find solutions. 

  1. Accountability 

Accountability is a core value in every workplace and can be fostered and nurtured through weekly check-ins. Employees giving routine progress reports build a sense of commitment and responsibility. 

  1. Collaboration

They promote collaboration between departments and individuals within the organization. It gives teams the chance to provide updates on their projects concerning other groups, building trust and strengthening relationships.

  1. Fewer conflicts

When employees regularly update each other on their progress, they'll better understand themselves. This helps reduce misunderstandings on roles and what needs to be done at certain times.

Assembly's weekly check-in template prevents unproductive meetings and allows you optimize your efforts with minimal planning.

What Should I Cover In A Weekly Check-in?

The answers to your weekly check-in questions should provide a comprehensive overview of the progress made by employees. Therefore, having a weekly check-in meeting agenda is vital to make it worthwhile for everyone attending.

A productive check-in meeting should accomplish three things: 

1. Everyone to know what's expected of them. 

2. Everyone can visualize the next steps and how to get there. 

3. Everyone can discuss what they are doing and what can be improved, if anything.

In a weekly check-in, questions should be open-ended. This allows the manager to gain valuable insights. Here are some check-in constructive questions for employees to consider:

  1. What are you working on this week?
  2. Were there any challenges last week? What were they?
  3. What improvements can be made this week?
  4. Do you have any concerns or challenges you'd like to share?
  5. Are there areas you think I can be more helpful?

While drafting follow-up questions, asking questions relevant to employees' roles is essential. Managers should also include questions about their personal life while respecting boundaries.

A meeting checklist also allows managers to make the most of the check-ins. A checklist also ensures you cover all you sought to discuss and helps you focus, making the meeting more effective and worthwhile. 

How Often Should You Check-in With Your Employees?

The answer depends on your company's size and culture. But for most companies, weekly check-ins are a good starting point.

An article in Gallup Business Journal outlines how high-performance managers can balance team engagement and productivity by helping employees prioritize their projects and holding employees accountable for their performances.

And a frequent check-in team meeting helps managers of remote teams achieve these.

Additionally, 89 percent of HR leaders in a survey agree that regular meetings, peer feedback and check-ins positively impact their organizations.

The key is to find the sweet spot that works for your team. Here are some guidelines to consider while determining frequency:

  • Check-ins should be frequent enough to give employees feedback on their work and help them improve, but not so frequently that they become a burden.
  • Ensure the check-ins are frequent enough to help employees be always aware of what they need to accomplish for each task. This gives them a clear understanding of their strengths and weaknesses at every point.
  • Check-ins should also be long enough to allow employees to discuss their progress since the last meeting — ideally, at least 15 minutes per meeting. However, an engaging and productive five-minute check-in is better than a long one that feels like an interrogation.
  • Organize check-ins at a time that can benefit everyone. Include everyone who needs to be involved. This may include colleagues from different teams working on the same project.

The frequency of check-ins should fit into the company culture and the team member existing structure. If other meetings within the week would make weekly check-ins a burden, you can consider bi-weekly check-ins.

How Do You Check-in With Staff

The first step is selecting a date and time that is convenient for everyone to reduce absenteeism and rescheduling. 

For a good outcome and improved engagement, ensure you ask your employees about issues they would like to discuss at the meeting. And add it to the meeting agenda. 

A successful weekly check-in hinges on proper planning. Here are five tips to guide you in holding weekly check ins well:

  1. Create A Check-in Agenda

A well-structured meeting has an agenda that is duly followed. It includes questions for employees and highlights what the check-in aims to achieve. It also dictates the tone of the meeting.

  1. Conduct A Check-in

During the meeting, you inquire about what they are currently working on, the progress made, and the challenges. 

When conducting a check-in, give room for employees to express themselves. You can also use the check-in sessions as an avenue to prefer solutions and reinforce company goals (utilize an employee check-in template if you need help).

  1. Provide Feedback

Check-ins are a form of bidirectional communication. So it is ideal that you provide appropriate feedback when the need arises.

Feedback should be concise, specific, polite, and genuine. Strive to achieve a balance between criticism and commendation.

  1. Set Up An Action Plan For The Following Week

An action plan moves things further in the right direction. It's essential to have a 'next-steps' list to ensure that inputs received during the check-in are followed. 

It ensures that everyone judiciously follows it up, knowing tasks and timelines. This ensures accountability.

  1. Use a template

Assembly's weekly check-in template allows you to work smarter towards having productive meetings. A template allows you to save time and reduce surprises. It provides the structure and consistency needed to have successful check-ins. 

Finding the balance with weekly employee check-ins

It can be tough to balance the need to give your employees regular feedback and comments on their work with the need to not overly micro-manage them. But figuring out that balance with weekly or bi-weekly check-in definitely pays off.

Regular contact with your employees is vital. It not only provides an avenue to align workers with the goals and objectives of the company, but the employees feel and know there's a time and place for feedback. And that way, no one feels either micromanaged or totally unseen.

Book a Demo today to learn the best ways to have constructive and productive weekly check-ins.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is Assembly SOC 2 compliant?

Yes, at Assembly, security is a top priority. Each quarter, we have ongoing security work that is everyone’s responsibility. While we maintain a strong security posture, it was important for us to prove to our customers that we do everything we claim to do. This led us to pursue a SOC 2 Type II report that would provide evidence of our compliance with industry gold-standard security practice.

What's the ROI for employee recognition?

There is study after study showing that employee recognition leads to increased engagement. This in return creates an environment where employees are happier and more motivated which increase productivity and reduces voluntary turnover significantly. In order to filled critical roles, companies tend to spend nearly twice the value of an annual salary. Assembly is an investment in your employees that supports your bottom line.

Does Assembly offer longer-term contracts?

Yes, we will offer contracts for companies with longer-term agreements to help larger customers have more certainty around future costs.

The minimum agreement term is a 12-month subscription.

Does Assembly offer onboarding support?

We do and for FREE! Any new customer needing further support to get started with Assembly to ensure you're set up for success can request custom onboarding support. Improving your employee experience is about much more than just using our amazing software; it’s about transforming your business to create a workplace that people love. That’s much easier to do with the personal support and advice from our passionate people experts.

Is there a free version of Assembly?

Yes. We offer a completely free plan for up to 50 team members. This plan is intended for teams or organizations that are looking to get started with an employee engagement tool. Keep in mind, this plan is limited in features.

All customers can open an Assembly account for free and get started without a credit card. Then you can change plans as necessary.

How much do rewards cost?

At the time of redemption (when your employees exchange their points for a paid reward) you'll pay face value. If a reward is a $10 Amazon gift card, your cost will be $10. All paid rewards are billed for on a monthly basis.

The good news is that you don't have to pay for rewards upfront because we only charge you when points are redeemed, not when they're earned.

Does Assembly offer discounts?

We offer discounts or educational or charitable organizations. In order to secure a discount, you'll first need to book a demo with a customer support specialist.

For all other organizations, we are willing to consider longer-term agreements in exchange for discounts. To set up annual plans or longer, you will need to book a demo with a customer support specialist.

How do I cancel my plan if needed?

If you're on a month to month plan, you can go here and cancel anytime. If you're having concerns or need help setting up your account for success, you can always book a demo with a customer support specialist.

If you're on a longer-term custom plan, you'll need to reach out to your customer support specialist to cancel your account or email us at

What customizations are available?

Great question! You can customize your core values to match your organization's to boost and track alignment. You can change your currency from the 🏆 emoji (our default) to any emoji of your choice. You can swap our logo for your own. You can also set up company culture rewards such as, "Lunch with the CEO," "Buy a book on us," and so much more!

Who can give or receive recognition?

While we recommend a peer to peer set up where anyone in your organization can give or receive recognition, you can set up Assembly however you want. If you need to limit the people who can give or receive recognition, that's perfectly fine and can be done from your Admin, here.

What integrations are available?

Assembly connects to the tools your employees use every day to offer an easy, seamless experience with minimal change management.  

Assembly has integrations with HCM/HRIS systems like ADP, Google, Office 365, and Slack. We also integrate with communication tools like Slack and Teams so you and your employees can access Assembly wherever they work now.

What's your average adoption rate?

That depends on the company's permissions set up. That said, over 90% of the employees on Assembly's platform are recognized on a monthly basis. That means nearly every employee across all of our customers are receiving regular recognition from their peers, managers, or leadership. We're extremely proud of this.

Must rewards be set up to use Assembly?

They are not required. You can use Assembly without having rewards set up. However, we don't recommend it if you intend to have a high adoption and usage rate. You can always keep the costs down by offering internal culture rewards that are fulfilled by you internally.

Are points required to use Assembly?

No, you can remove allowances from anyone or everyone. It's up to you but we do recommend using points whether they're worth a real dollar value or not. Companies that use points have a much higher engagement rate even if those points don't exchange for real dollars.

Could find the answer you are looking for?

Please schedule time with an expert and we will help you to get all your questions answered