Implementing performance appraisal: Exploring the employee experience

Line managers play an important role as implementers of performance appraisal, enacting procedures designed by the HR function. However, the actual employee experience of these procedures (which may differ from how they were intended or enacted) in terms of perceptions of justice in the process is likely to have consequences for levels of organizational commitment. Furthermore, based on signaling theory, the broader organizational climate, measured here in terms of the level of trust employees have in the senior management, sets the context in which this experience takes shape. Presenting multilevel analysis of 4,422 employees across 22 business units, we show that organizational units with high trust in senior management have both higher levels of commitment, and show a stronger link between employee perceptions of fair treatment by their line manager during performance appraisal, and organizational commitment. This provides initial evidence that the impact of line manager actions is important for employee-level outcomes but is also constrained by the organizational climate.

This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: [Implementing Performance Appraisal: Exploring the Employee Experience. Human Resource Management 52, 6 p879-897 (2013)], which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions:



Work Title Implementing performance appraisal: Exploring the employee experience
Open Access
  1. Elaine Farndale
  2. Clare Kelliher
  1. Performance appraisal
  2. Line manager enactment
  3. Employee perceptions
  4. Organizational justice
  5. Trust
  6. Organizational climate
  7. Commitment
  8. Multi-level analysis
License In Copyright (Rights Reserved)
Work Type Article
  1. Human Resource Management
Publication Date November 19, 2013
Publisher Identifier (DOI)
Deposited September 12, 2023




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Work History

Version 1

  • Created
  • Added Author_accepted_HRM_PA.pdf
  • Added Creator Elaine Farndale
  • Added Creator Clare Kelliher
  • Published
  • Updated Keyword, Publication Date Show Changes
    • Performance appraisal, Line manager enactment, Employee perceptions, Organizational justice, Trust, Organizational climate, Commitment, Multi-level analysis
    Publication Date
    • 2013-11-01
    • 2013-11-19
  • Updated