The Do's and Don’t of Self-Evaluation for Work

Your self-evaluation isn't something you scribble 10 minutes before meeting with your manager. Consider these tips to guide you

September 26, 2022
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Would you rather have your manager judge your work performance solely on information they gather, or would you like to have some input on how you are appraised?

Studies show that about 65% of employees think external performance reviews don't correlate with their jobs and tend to highlight different areas of improvement in self appraisal. 

This realization has opened up space for self-evaluation and performance reviews at the workplace. However, evaluating oneself (and other team members) without undercutting your achievements or over-inflating them is difficult. 

With some self-evaluation guidance and some tips, writing your employee self-evaluation will be a walk in the park for you and a great way to show off great written communication, problem solving skills and professional development.

This article will look at essential elements to include in your workplace self-evaluation, tips on exactly how to evaluate yourself at work and the things you need to toss.

What does self-evaluation mean?

As the name implies, self-evaluation is part of an employee performance review where the employee assess their own performance. It's a core part of the performance review that lets you analyze your outputs to the company, your growth, leadership skills (if you are a manager), success, and areas you need to focus on for improvement. 

Personal evaluation for performance reviews allows you to outline what you've been doing at the company before your manager takes a go at it.

It requires honesty, proper planning, positive attitude, and a lot of introspection. For an easier, seamless experience, try out Assembly's self-evaluation template.

What should I write in my self-assessment performance review?

As mentioned, own self assessment requires a lot of introspection. You need to think about the things you've achieved so far and your best skills, but you also need to consider your fault areas. 

Your performance feedback isn't something you scribble 10 minutes before meeting with your manager. It requires time and intentional record taking over some time. 

Here are a few performance review phrases on how to write a personal evaluation and what to include in your self-evaluation for work (or check out questions to ask your manager): 

  • Accomplishments

When did your teammates applaud you for your contribution? When did your boss send you a "Great job!" note? What project are you most proud of? You can include all these and similar ones in your self-evaluation form. 

For more credibility, practice the 'show, not tell' method by including evidence to back up the accomplishments you included.

  • Workplace Productivity

Employers like to know that their employees are doing the jobs they are paid to do most efficiently. Your workplace efficiency and productivity are directly tied to the things you have accomplished. 

Let your self-evaluation reflect your steps to operating at peak productivity and the results. If any, include plans to boost your productivity further and prevent a decline over time. 

  • Effective time management

Managers want to know that you can prioritize your tasks without constantly being told what to do and when to do it. 

Highlight how you meet your KPIs  in timely manner by prioritization and effective time management.

  • Great communication skills

Asides from having the hard skills for a job, soft skills like communication contribute significantly to hiring. It also matters in the workplace, so it should reflect in your self-evaluation. 

Outline scenarios where your communication skills have helped solve or diffuse a problem. It could be with a client, colleague, or boss. Give real-life scenarios and talk about the outcome, how you were able to actively listen and provide constructive feedback.

  • Teamwork

No employee in a company should work as a single unit. Collaboration, core values and teamwork keep the company together and helps it accomplish its goals. Talk about team player self assessment like this in your self-evaluation. 

Mention how the experience was, the circumstances, what your contributions were to the project, being a team member and the outcome. You can also include any challenges you encountered while working in a team and how you overcame them when writing self evaluations.

  • Your creativity

It matters to most organizations that employees contribute to creative problem-solving that helps the company grow. Include all the times you've made a contribution that improved a project or the company's overall output. 

Did you try a new way of doing something that yielded great results? Did your suggestion make a project better? No matter how small, include what value your creativity has brought to the company and with suitable examples. 

  • Working with tight deadlines

You won't always have the luxury of time to complete tasks at your own pace. Sometimes you (and your team) may find yourselves in a time crunch where you must complete a task within a short time. 

If this has happened to you, talk about it, and give the scenarios or self-evaluation examples. Employers and managers like to see the ability to work under pressure. It shouldn’t be the norm, but it's a handy skill to have. 

  • Result of Projects

Your self-evaluation is incomplete without a summation of the projects you've worked on and their outcomes. State the objectives of each project, the steps you followed, and the eventual outcome. This allows you to acknowledge your success and show how much of an asset you are to the company.

  • Areas of Improvement

So far, we've discussed the workplace strengths to include in your self-evaluation, but everyone has weaknesses. And that should be reflected when completing a performance evaluation for work.

Take time to self reflect and discuss the areas of your job you believe need improvement and why. You can also include the steps you plan to take to improve. 

If you have difficulty bringing all these things together in your self-evaluation, Assembly has different templates that'll make the process fast and easy.

What Should I Remove From My Self-Assessment Performance Review?

We’ve explored what should be included in your self-evaluation for workplace performance review. 

Now, let's consider what you should not include in your self-evaluation. 

  • Questions about a pay increase

There’s a place and time to ask about a pay raise, not during your self-evaluation. Self-evaluation is about reflecting on what you have done, how much you have achieved, and how to be better. 

  • Complaints

While this may feel like a pressing issue, it’s irrelevant to your self-evaluation for work. If there are complaints to make, raise them with HR and follow the proper process. 

  • Leave Request

Leave requests or any other kind of request should not be done in your self-evaluation. The goal of self-evaluation is clear, don't try to use it as a stone to kill multiple birds. 

What is a good performance review self assessment sample?

We'll be looking at these two own self-evaluation examples to give you a better picture of how to fill out self evaluation for work.

Example 1: Discussing your creativity

I do a lot of research and look at what our competitors are doing to develop fresh ideas to help my team. Before every stand-up or brainstorming session, I find out what the agenda is and come up with a list of ideas that could be helpful. 

Doing this keeps me on my toes and helps me devise creative ways to carry out tasks and improve the company's overall output. 

The area I need to work on:

I consider myself a very creative person with many great ideas. However, I battle with impostor syndrome and don't share my thoughts as much as I'd like, especially this past year. I'm working on my confidence and overcoming impostor syndrome.

Example 2: Discussing your communication skills

I'm intentional about communicating with my team members and line manager. I promptly send all my updates and feedback using the company's assigned communication channels. On such occasions when I cannot meet a deadline in time, I ensure that I inform all affected parties ahead of time and let them know what difficulties I'm having and the new timeline for delivery.

The area I need to work on:

I sometimes find it challenging to ask for help from my colleagues on a group task because I don't want to burden them. However, I’m learning that part of effective communication is asking for help, especially on a collaborative project.

How do I evaluate my work performance?

Compare your job performance and output to your job description using KPIs. If you are hitting all your targets and executing your tasks timely and effectively, you can say that you are doing your job well. However, if you are not meeting any of your KPIs or falling short on your job responsibilities, you can tell that your job performance is poor.

In addition, feedback from colleagues can be a good indicator of your work performance.

Start doing your self-evaluation the easier way

With Assembly, self-assessment has been made easier. The self-evaluation template simplifies the process and gives you a guide on how to fill out a self evaluation.

Check out this video for a complete guide on how to use the self-evaluation template.  

1. How can managers effectively integrate employee self-evaluations into the overall performance review process?

To effectively integrate self-evaluations into the performance review process, managers can adopt the following strategies:

  • Preparation and Guidance: Provide employees with clear guidelines and criteria for self-evaluation. This includes defining objectives, key performance indicators (KPIs), and expectations. Providing examples or templates can also help employees understand what to focus on.
  • Alignment with Organizational Goals: Ensure that the self-evaluation form asks questions that align with the broader organizational goals and values. This helps in assessing how individual contributions are supporting the company's objectives.
  • Discussion and Feedback: Use the self-evaluation as a starting point for the performance review discussion. This encourages open dialogue where both parties can share perspectives. It's crucial for managers to listen actively and acknowledge the employee's self-assessment before offering their own insights.
  • Consensus on Objectives: After discussing the self-evaluation and manager's assessment, jointly set goals and objectives for the next review period. This collaborative approach ensures alignment and mutual understanding of expectations.
  • Continuous Check-ins: Integrate the outcomes of the self-evaluation into regular check-ins with the employee. This helps in tracking progress on agreed-upon objectives and adjusting them as necessary.

2. What are the best practices for addressing discrepancies between an employee's self-evaluation and a manager's assessment?

When discrepancies arise between an employee's self-evaluation and their manager's assessment, the following practices can help:

  • Open and Honest Dialogue: Initiate a conversation focused on understanding the reasons behind the differing assessments. Encourage employees to explain their perspective and share evidence supporting their self-evaluation.
  • Fact-Based Discussion: Base the discussion on specific examples, data, and facts rather than general perceptions. This helps in objectively analyzing the discrepancies.
  • Focus on Development: Frame the conversation around growth and development. Discuss areas of improvement in a constructive manner and acknowledge achievements highlighted in the self-evaluation.
  • Agree on a Way Forward: Identify actionable steps that the employee can take to address areas of discrepancy. This might include training, mentorship, or setting specific goals.
  • Regular Feedback: Encourage ongoing communication and feedback outside of formal review cycles. This helps in minimizing discrepancies in future evaluations by ensuring both parties have a shared understanding of performance expectations.

3. How can employees and managers ensure that self-evaluations lead to actionable development plans?

To ensure self-evaluations lead to actionable development plans, consider the following approaches:

  • Specific Goals: Use the insights from the self-evaluation to set specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals. These goals should address both strengths to be leveraged and areas for improvement.
  • Personal Development Plan: Create a personalized development plan for each employee that outlines the steps needed to achieve their goals. This might include training programs, new projects, or mentorship opportunities.
  • Resources and Support: Ensure employees have access to the resources and support they need to pursue their development goals. This could include budget for training, time allocation for learning, or access to internal or external mentors.
  • Tracking Progress: Regularly review the development plan and track progress towards the goals. Adjust the plan as needed based on feedback and changing circumstances.
  • Encourage Self-Reflection: Foster a culture of continuous improvement and self-reflection. Encourage employees to regularly assess their progress and seek feedback from peers and managers.

Assembly has a range of tools and templates that helps employers work smarter, not harder, to increase productivity and output. Book a demo today to discuss the options available to you.

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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.

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