Orientation Briefing - Overview
Before beginning the feedback assessment process, participants – both subjects and respondents – will
want to know several things. The Orientation Briefing is a structured meeting in which these typical
questions are answered:
Who will receive feedback?
How were respondents chosen?
How will the feedback process work?
What will they have to do?
How will they complete their assessments?
When does it all have to be completed?
What about confidentiality?
Who will see the information?
What will they learn?
What developmental activities will follow assessment?
How will people know if the process has any long-term effect on the subject’s performance?
This section provides you with a lesson plan, script and PowerPoint file for conducting the introductory
meeting with participants.
Orientation Briefing - Outline
Objective: To prepare 360 feedback recipients and respondents by explaining the process and distributing
Time: 1 hour
Projection system (for large groups)
Appropriate Comment – Positive
Appropriate Comment – Constructive
PDF: Sample report pages (create your own)
Handouts (one per person):
List of categories and items in the assessment
Sample report pages (create your own)
Notify participants of the time and place for the meeting. If a meeting is inconvenient, consider
using a memo, e-mail, an audiotape or a videotape to preview and answer questions about the
assessment process. A sample orientation letter is included as a guide (see p. 7).
Study the outline, script and transparencies.
Decide how you will cover the main points.
1. Preview the agenda.
2. Describe 360 feedback.
3. Explain what will be assessed.
4. Overview what happens before assessment.
5. Overview what happens during assessment.
6. Explain scoring and reporting.
7. Overview what happens after assessment.
8. Describe the built-in confidentiality protection systems.
9. Preview the individual report.
10. Preview the group report (optional).
11. Give final instructions.
Orientation Briefing - Script
This section contains a suggested script for conducting the Orientation Briefing. You can modify the text of
the script and accompanying Power Point file to fit the needs of your audience.
1. Preview the agenda. [PPT slide: "Agenda"]
Explain the purpose of the assessment.
SCRIPT: The purpose of 360 is to give people performance feedback from many sources, to help
them identify their strengths and areas for improvement.
Describe 360 feedback.
SCRlPT: 360 feedback is designed to collect and report comments along with numerical ratings
about specific behaviors.
Describe the behaviors to be assessed.
SCRIPT: There are ____ individual items in your assessment. We'll look at these in more detail in a
Overview the feedback process.
SCRlPT: The process involves each respondent completing ratings online after receiving an email
giving you a link to your assessment.
Preview the individual report.
SCRIPT: The software compiles all ratings and comments anonymously. A report for each
feedback recipient is then printed. No names are ever attached to the ratings or comments. We'll
preview the report in a few minutes.
Provide instructions for completing online assessments.
SCRlPT: Each of you will receive a link to access your assessment. All of your ratings will be kept
2. Describe 360 feedback. [PPT slide: "360-Degree Feedback"]
Explain multi-source feedback and its benefits.
SCRIPT: Multi-source feedback gives you an evaluation of your skills by combining the
observations of many people, such as managers, peers, direct reports and customers. Their
anonymous ratings and comments are consolidated and averaged by computer, and these ratings
are compared with your own ratings. The benefit of this kind of assessment is that you are able to
get feedback from more than just one person, such as your boss. The feedback is based on the
combined judgment of people who have first-hand knowledge of your performance.
Describe specific aspects of your 360 assessment that may interest your group.
3. Explain what will be assessed.
Describe the survey items included in their assessment.
If you are using customized items, you can make a slide that lists the items to be assessed. If
desired, distribute a list of the items in the assessment. Give everyone time to read through the list,
then let them ask questions to clarify the meaning of any item.
Explain that the assessment identifies strengths and developmental needs for both
individuals and the group.
SCRIPT: A 360 assessment diagnoses strengths and priority areas for development. It also
identifies strengths and areas of concern for the group as a whole. After assessment and feedback,
the group can suggest approaches that will work best to build skills and improve performance in the
areas identified as priorities for development.
4. Overview what happens before assessment. [PPT slide: "Feedback Process"]
Explain that set-up involves customizing and refining the assessment items, identifying subjects and
adding the names of respondents.
SCRlPT: As part of the assessment process, the names of the people being rated have been
entered, along with the names of feedback providers. Customized items were added (if appropriate).
Explain that the purpose of this session is to help them understand what the assessment process is
all about and how they are to complete the next step. If you plan to conduct the workshop, "Giving
Effective Feedback," mention that they will also be given guidelines on giving written feedback.
5. Overview what happens during assessment. [PPT slide: " Feedback Process"]
NOTE: To prepare for this segment of the session, complete the steps below in advance.
1. Import Test Subject into your project from the Test Subject Roster, and enter your own address
in the email address field. “Self” is already assigned as a respondent, so when you upload your
project to the web server, Test Subject can be used to demonstrate what participants will see.
2. In step 6, click on Test Subject on the left and Send email on the right. You’ll receive the email
notification with a link to the website. Make a note of this URL, and use it to demonstrate what
participants will see when they access their own assessments.
3. If you can’t go online during this session, make screen captures of several web pages from the
actual assessment they’ll see (Log-in, Instructions, Introductory page, first assessment page,
etc.) to familiarize them with the look and feel.
Explain how to complete the assessments online. If you can access the web, log in as Test Subject
(Username: Test Subject and Password: test), and show the group what they will see. If you can’t go
online, use the screen captures you created in #3 above. Explain each page as you show it.
SCRIPT: The screen will look like this. You will be asked to rate the individual on a scale of I to 10 (or
whatever scales you're using). You will use the mouse to click on the desired rating. After you select
the rating, you can type a comment to explain the reason for your rating. Comments are optional.
All your feedback is saved online. If you have more than one person to give feedback to, you can
start with anyone you wish. It takes about 15-30 minutes to complete one assessment, depending
on the number of items. I recommend that you do only one assessment at a time. If you need to stop
before you complete an assessment, you can save what you have entered up to that point.
Explain how to write effective comments. [PPT slide: "Comments"]
SCRlPT: The space for comments allows you to give examples or an explanation of a rating.
Comments are especially important if you rated a person high or low. They help people understand
the reasons for your ratings. It’s important to be honest and fair in your comments. Tell the truth, but
avoid aggressive, harsh, absolute or general statements, such as "You have the worst attitude I've
ever seen," or "You never think of anyone but yourself."
Your comments should be specific. Describe behaviors or actions that you have observed or
It’s helpful to include a mixture of both positive and constructive comments to give a balance of
Show examples that illustrate the difference between appropriate and inappropriate
comments. [PPT slides: “Inappropriate Comments,” “Appropriate Comment – Positive,” and
“Appropriate Comment – Constructive”]
6. Explain scoring and reporting.
Describe the types of reports that will be provided to each participant, based on what your organization
has identified. Providing sample pages of the report sections will help make this more concrete.
7. Overview what happens after assessment. [PPT slide: "Feedback Process"]
Interpretation and planning
Explain the purpose of the interpretation session:
- Feedback recipients will receive their reports
- Help people accept and begin analyzing their feedback.
Explain that planning for development will take place after the interpretation session:
- Review their reports privately
- Begin work on their individual development plans
- Arrange coaching for individual development planning
Development Phase: Training, Application & Reinforcement
Explain that they will identify areas for improvement and develop a plan with specific developmental
strategies. This could include training, if appropriate. In any case, development should include
application and reinforcement of desired behaviors. If appropriate, mention that they will receive
suggestions for improving in low-rated areas in a special report entitled "Recommendations for
Development." Briefly mention other possible developmental strategies.
If appropriate, tell them that another assessment may be conducted sometime in the future to
measure performance improvement. This will involve comparing pre- and post-developmental
8. Describe the built-in confidentiality protection systems. [PPT slide: "Confidentiality"]
Individual Username and Password
SCRIPT: You will receive a link to a log-in page where you’ll enter your Username and create your
own password. No one else will be able to access your assessment without your password. Be sure
to write it down and keep it in a secure place in case you forget it.
Anonymous ratings and comments
SCRlPT: The ratings and comments you give will be consolidated with the ratings and comments
of everyone who gives feedback to that individual. They will appear anonymously in the person's
report. Your name will never be linked to your individual ratings and comments.
No on-screen review of your individual responses
SCRlPT: When you complete the assessment, no one can view your individual ratings or
9. Preview the individual report. [Show PDF of a sample report onscreen]
Explain that each feedback recipient will receive a confidential report. Remind them that ratings are
anonymous. Individual ratings are not shown in the reports - only average ratings.
Help them understand what their individual reports will look like.
Show PDF of sample report section pages.
Distribute sample report pages. Point out specific features in the report sections that they will
10. Preview the group report. (optional)
If appropriate, explain that a group summary report can be prepared which provides data about the
group's overall strengths and areas needing development.
11. Give final instructions.
Tell them to rate all the people whose names appear on their assessment.
Ask them to complete their assessments by the due date.
Caution respondents to make a note their password after they log in the first time.
Sample Orientation Letter
[The following letter can be used if you are unable to meet with feedback providers in person.]
You’ve been asked to give performance feedback to some of your coworkers or managers because you
have first-hand experience working with them. Your opinions about their strengths and areas for
improvement will help them plan for professional development.
Combining the observations of several individuals to give people an evaluation of their skills is called
360-degree (multi-source) feedback, an automated feedback process that gathers numerical ratings and
written comments using web-based assessments.
You’ll receive an email message from [name] with the Subject line: [Subject line you will use]. The email will
provide a link to your online assessment and will contain the Username you’ll use to log in.
The system has several features to protect confidentiality and anonymity. You’ll create a password the first
time you access your assessment. No one else will be able to look at your ratings without your password.
When you complete the assessment, the program automatically combines your ratings and comments with
the responses of other feedback providers. The average ratings and all respondent comments appear
anonymously in the person's confidential report. Your name is never linked to your individual ratings and
If you have to give feedback to more than one person, you can start with anyone you wish. Depending on
the number of questions, it may take 15-30 minutes to complete the assessment for one person. If you need
to stop before you complete your ratings, you can save what you’ve entered up to that point and return later.
Please give fair, honest feedback. Each person will appreciate having the perspectives of the people who
know their work.
Be sure to complete the feedback for everyone you've been asked to assess by the date specified in the
Thank you for taking time to help these individuals improve their workplace performance.
Description of areas to be assessed
Sample report sections