Step 3: End-of-Year Discussion

The end-of-year discussion allows for a conversation to discuss the year’s performance and give feedback.

Training Resources and Materials

Register for a Zoom session to learn how to complete the End-of-Year Review process in Workday.

Staff Employees


The staff employee has the following responsibilities for the End-of-Year Review discussion:

Before: Complete a self-assessment of their performance for the cycle and schedule a conversation with their manager; seek feedback on performance from other colleagues who are familiar with their work (optional). 

During: Share information regarding accomplishments and areas of improvement; work with manager to reach agreement on the performance review; begin planning for next year’s goals and developmental opportunities.

After: Confirm that the end-of-year discussion occurred and that the rating was received.

The manager has the following responsibilities for the End-of-Year Review discussion:

Before: Ask the employee to complete and submit self-assessment; seek feedback on the employee’s performance from other colleagues who are familiar with their work (optional); complete a draft of the performance review and participate in calibration conversations with peer supervisors. The review conversation should not occur until AFTER the calibration conversations take place and ratings are confirmed.

During: Discuss highlights/accomplishments and areas of improvement regarding the employee’s performance throughout the year, giving specific examples of how they performed in their role, demonstrated competencies and achieved their goals.   

After: Review, finalize and share the end-of-year review with the employee; confirm that the end-of-year discussion occurred and that the rating was delivered.

For assistance, please review the Manager Checklist (coming soon) for End-of-Year Reviews.

Information gathered for the End-of-Year Review discussion includes an employee self-assessment, feedback from peers/customers/direct reports/others (highly encouraged) and feedback from the direct manager.

Preparing for Your End-of-Year Review

You are required to complete a self-evaluation in Workday, given that you know best what you’ve accomplished and what you are most proud of achieving during the past year. This is your opportunity to share highlights of your year, including your accomplishments within your role, behavioral examples of how you have demonstrated each competency and the goal results you’ve achieved. You may also include any professional development activities that you completed over the last year as they relate to your goals, your role, competencies, Penn State Values and Ethics & Compliance obligations.

IMPORTANT: The End-of-Year Review process starts with the completion of your self-evaluation in Workday-- your manager cannot begin your evaluation until you have completed this step.

To get started on your End-of- Year self-evaluation, click on the task in the Workday inbox.

  • Enter your 2019-2020 goals into Workday and complete your self-evaluation by rating your performance as it relates to each goal and competency.
  • Answer the two Ethics and Compliance Statements.
  • Provide an overall rating of your performance before submitting your self-evaluation.

You and your manager may obtain feedback from others to complete this step. Feel free to reach out to others and ask them to provide specific feedback about your work performance over the last year. Pose a few questions via email or during a conversation—and be sure to thank them for their insights. If you have already received feedback from others during the past year, include it!

Some questions to consider:

  • What do you consider to be one of my strengths?
  • What is one thing I could do differently or better that would help me be more effective in my role?
  • Please provide an example or two of how I was able to positively impact the work we did together. (colleague/peer)
  • Please provide an example or two of how I positively impacted your experience. (customer)

Participating in the End-of-Year Review

The end-of-year conversation is a critical element of the performance management process. It serves as a review of the year as well as a starting point for your future growth and development in order to make progress in your performance and career.

  1. Schedule time for the End-of-Year conversation.
  2. During the conversation, actively participate by discussing each area of the review in detail, including sharing specific examples and gaining understanding.

IMPORTANT: Please be sure to include the Ethics & Compliance topics in the conversation that focus on the following employee acknowledgements:

For more information and talking points, please refer to the next page of these instructions

  • After the conversation, your manager will update your review with any agreed upon changes and share the document with you. Both parties will acknowledge that the End-of-Year conversation occurred and that an overall rating was given/received. Once your manager acknowledges the conversation, you will receive a task in your Workday inbox prompting you to confirm that your review occurred and that you received an overall rating. Feel free to add your final comments in the box provided before submitting.  

A brief tutorial is available for how to utilize Workday for the End-of-Year Revie activities. For more information about the Ethics and Compliance statements/conversation starters:

Ratings Scale

The rating scale is simple to communicate and allows for honest communication of employee effectiveness while maintaining flexibility to differentiate performance.

Performance Ratings (For competencies, goals and overall rating)
Rating Description
Exceptional Demonstrates and applies exceptional level of knowledge and skills; consistently excels; significant achievement relative to goals
Successful Demonstrates the appropriate level of knowledge and/or skills; performs effectively and consistently; achieves goal targets
Needs Improvement Demonstrates a lack of knowledge and/or skills in one or more areas; does not perform consistently; does not achieve goals

Additional Resources

FAQs - Employees

FAQs - Managers

End-of-Year Review in Workday (employees)

End-of-Year Review in Workday (managers)