Evaluation periods – new employees

Evaluation periods – new employees

Purpose of our 90 Day Evaluation period

We operate a 90 Day Evaluation period  for new permanent employees to assess their suitability. The purpose of these periods is that the employee becomes a valuable and fully productive team member as quickly as possible. Our responsibility as managers is to do all we reasonably can to make that happen. The following background information is to help you manage evaluation periods successfully. Detail of how this evaluation period works and how you should review progress and deal with any performance or behaviour issues that arise is described in the Onboarding section of this site.

Legal situation

As an employer of more than 20 employees we don’t have access to the 90 Day Trial period provisions of the Employment Relations Act. That means that, if we terminate someone during the 90 Day Evaluation period we must have good cause and operate a fair process.

Evaluation periods - How they work

The key elements of our evaluation periods are as follows:

  • Our objective is that the employee quickly becomes a valued and successful team member
  • Our target is to complete our evaluation in 90 days – though you may extend it if necessary
  • By accepting our offer of employment the new employee accepts that they are going into an evaluation period. The applicant has the right to refuse the offer of a trial period, in which case you do not have to employ the applicant.
  • The terms of our evaluation period are in our offer of employment and specify:
    • The length of the evaluation period, usually 90 Days
    • The purpose of the period, being to evaluate the persons ability to reach our standards of performance and behaviour
    • That we will clearly spell out our expectations and standards
    • That there will be regular, normally weekly, progress review meetings
    • That where they are not meeting our expectations and standards those issues will be discussed with a view to resolving them
    • That, if we develop concerns that the employee is not willing or able to reach our standards we will discuss those concerns and give the employee a reasonable opportunity to reach our standards
    • If, despite such opportunities we conclude they will not reach our standards we may terminate their employment by giving them the notice period described in their employment agreement, or payment in lieu.