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Anonymous and confidential 360° feedback

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Anonymity of the 360° feedback responses is one of the topics we get the most questions about. In some cases anonymity is a must have while in others it's only important that results stay confidential and anonymity is not required.

Anonymous feedback

In some organizations employees are very concerned about anonymity and want to be reassured that all their answers will be completely anonymous. Some employees may even want to know exactly how each of their responses will be presented in the final report. In those cases it's extremely important to properly communicate the value of the 360-degree feedback process works, how the feedback will be used and how the anonymity of respondents is guaranteed. Employees will not feel comfortable providing feedback if they do not trust the system.

Confidential feedback

In an organization with a culture that promotes and values trust, collaboration and openness, anonymous feedback is not necessary or even desirable. In such an organization employees are used to openly provide constructive feedback to peers and managers and a more open 360° process should be implemented. Feedback should still be confidential and only the manager of the person being reviewed should be able to identify individual respondents.

Choose the one that applies to your situation

There's no one-size-fits-all solution regarding this issue and both types of surveys are valid and apply to different situations. Our 360-degree feedback system accommodates both and it's the person starting the survey that decides the type of anonymity desired.

Pick the anonymity property of the 360 degree feedback survey

Make sure you choose the one that best applies to your situation.