Simple, Intuitive Reports
Very Quick to Complete
Learning Library Support
Choice of Frameworks
Online Drill Down
Having decided on the type of 360 degree feedback system that best suits your organisation, the next thing is to decide exactly what you want it to do. It is a common mistake of first time purchasers of 360 degree feedback system to ask only a few basic questions to which over 90% of all suppliers will be able to answer positively (Can I create my own competencies? Will it send reminder e-mails to people? Can I change participants? What if someone is not available on the internet? Can I send PDF reports to participants?) etc.
I have broken the feature set into 3 main areas, and then provided a list of features that you may need to consider. The possible feature list is not meant to be exhaustive, but should cover the vast majority of people's concerns, beyond the very basic requirements mentioned prevously.
Languages, ability for individuals to add competencies, any limitations on competencies or attributes, any limitations on scoring and/or types of scoring, text and numeric input, ability to add mandatory and non-mandatory questions, ease of access for users (passwords, links, other), ease of completion (how long does it take?), mulitple questionnaires to reflect differenct individual or departmental functions,can different questionnaires be allocated automatically to different people, are there competence/behaviour libraries, is the questionnaire consistenct on all browsers, can respondents decline to take part, is there a simple mechanism so that respondents can see exactly what is required of them and how many questionnaires they need to complete, can questionnaires be reviewed and/or edited after completion, can questionnaires be completed online/offline/by hand/over the phone/1 to 1.
Who can receive reports, who can view reports, how long do reports take to generate, can restrictions be imposed as to % of respondent completion before a report can be processed, are there any limitations on style, format or type of report charts, who decides when reports can be processed and distributed, can reports be automatically distributed at different times to different individuals/groups, can macro reports be generated (group, department, company statistics), in what formats are reports available, option to either group or randomise individual responses.
How quickly can new projects/individuals be created, can administrators view reports, can reminder e-mails be configured, can e-mails be sent sent automatically, are there any limitations to number of e-mails reminders, is there an exception list so that e-mail reminders are not sent to specific groups (eg customers, directors etc), can project status be e-mailed to interested parties, can participants view progress, what features of the system cannot be modified by the administrator, how granular is the administration (can an individual person completely administer their own 360 degree feedback system), how many levels of user access securtiy are available, how easily can an administrator view the progress for a specific project or individual, can the system determine the type of questionnaire for an individual online/offline/by hand/over the phone/1 to 1 and automatically select the appropriate medium, can corporate databases and demographics be integrated into system.
If you are not sure which features you may or may not require, then unless the selected supplier gives you a very warm feeling as to their ability to create new features, it is advisable to overspecify rather than run the risk of purchasing a system that may fail you. In general the cost of changing systems is very expensive and not always possible.