Importance of Annual Staff Reviews

Employment Blogs
Posted Date
May 31, 2022

Domestic staff does a lot of work in the employer’s home. When employees know that they can expect an annual staff review, most look forward to an honest assessment of his or her job performance each year. In fact, annual evaluations often provide unique opportunities that can lead to important discussions about many of the daily happenings that fell by the wayside. Moreover, periodic reviews offer the perfect private moment for credit to be given where credit is due. It is exactly the time for someone in a management role to sing praises that staff members have already earned. Since some domestic helpers primarily work outside the house, review accolades are important for recognizing and retaining all workers who have performed well throughout the year.

Although it is important to always thank staff members during the year, the annual staff review is exactly the time to demonstrate how much you appreciate the work they do and the sacrifices they make for the family. In addition, feedback from your staff is not always easy to get while everyone is fulfilling the daily routines required to responsibly manage a busy home. A domestic staffer’s day often begins early in the morning and doesn’t end until later that night. In most cases, there is little or no time during the workday for them to take a break and talk for a while. They are responsible for sweeping and cleaning, washing the dishes and folding the clothes, cooking a variety of meals, and sometimes looking after children or elderly family members.

Reasons for Using a Domestic Staffing Agency

An experienced domestic staffing agency can help take the pressure off you when it's time to conduct an annual staff review. Equally as important is the fact that a skilled recruiter is very capable of determining which employees should be retained and where there are new roles that the family needs to consider filling. Since you should always be looking for ways to improve the standard of your domestic staff, the talented team at International Domestic Consulting can provide you with peace of mind and guarantee the quality of workforce is always moving forward. Moreover, when you select our agency to conduct your annual domestic staff review, there is a dual benefit in helping to satisfy the needs and concerns of both the employees and family members.

Some of your staff may be live-in domestics that have their own quarters. Although these accommodations are not usually as comfortable as those for family members, the room and board they receive is part of his or her compensation and should also be part of the review process. In addition, aristocratic families may require live-in staffers to wear a uniform or more elaborate liveries for formal occasions. Traditionally, it is much easier for a professional to explain the reasons for the family’s requests as well as discuss any concerns the domestic staffer might have regarding unique requests. In regard to international staff assessments, domestic work may cover a wider range of responsibilities, and the services and expectations may vary based on the country of employment.

Determining How Much Support You Need

Assessing your domestic staff is critical for understanding and defining future placements. As the covid pandemic enters its endemic phase and you resume a more normal lifestyle, you may find your needs have changed dramatically. In addition to the staff who kept your household clean, you may have employed domestic support to care for children, prepare meals, run errands, or support elderly family members to allow them to live as independently as possible while aging in place. Conducting an annual staff review forces you to think about what your household needs will look like for the coming year. For example, you may already know that your family will be travelling more often or that as restrictions are lifted you will need to open and staff the lake house for the summer months.

Staff reviews can serve as the reference point around which you can account for and schedule any of the major changes that already know will need to be implemented. Similarly, it can be the perfect time to introduce new duties you want staff members to take on, as well as to redistribute responsibilities based on changes that have occurred. Although an annual review for your domestic staff should be a professional and structured interaction, it is a perfect opportunity to strengthen the bond between your employees and family members. As long as conversations are purely professional, grievances can also be aired to relieve workplace tensions. When qualified, trustworthy domestics are included, it makes it easier to make smooth transitions when it's time to hire additional staff.

Assessing HNW Household and Property Staff

Over time, it is easy for high net worth families with substantial assets to think of their staff as members of the family. However, this notion often leads to a failure to follow normal employment standards for routinely assessing domestic staff performance. Such common mistakes not only expose a family to a variety of liabilities, but the flawed practice may lead to unnecessary and unintended staff turnover. For these reasons, a professional approach to assessing domestic staff performance is equally as essential as it is in the rest of the business world. Peter O’Donovan and his staff at International Domestic Consulting understand the liabilities a high net worth family has in operating a large household and the complexities of conducting proper staff assessments.

Many of the risks of assessing domestic household staffers can be eliminated or mitigated by relying on the expertise of a professional staffing agency. Unfortunately, too many high net worth families have learned the hard way what can happen when they disregard best practices. By improperly reprimanding or terminating a member of their household staff, a high net worth family may be at risk to a broad range of legal suits alleging anything from sexual harassment to discrimination. To achieve a lasting and safe relationship between the family and its employees, it is important to follow the same rigorous onboarding and management procedures that are commonly used in the business world. Moreover, any failure to do so can result in an undesirable outcome.

At IDC, we understand the full gamut of unique challenges that a high net worth individual faces when it comes to managing a large household, or multiple residences. Peter O’Donovan can provide clarity about job responsibilities as well as perform accurate skills assessments for the retention or onboarding of household and property staff. We ensure that the right staff member understands what working for the family entails, including the need for impeccable discretion and privacy.