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Is Firing An Employee Through PIP Or Performance Improvement Plan Worth It?

Posted: August 18, 2020

The Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) often fails to help the employee but instead creates an unpleasant environment for the whole HR intervention. 

Now and then, companies face troubles with employees. Either they are not productive or are not sure how to meet the company’s standards. After repeated observations, senior or other HR officials are compelled to make a decision.

One such decision involves enrolling the targeted employee into the PIP or the performance improvement plan. However, as an HR official, there are specific ways you need to consider the execution of the PIP against an employee.

These parameters below will tell you whether having a PIP is a safe way to fire the employee when nothing else works.

Know that it gives out a negative image

It’s paramount to say that the old, outdated, and crusty management systems are the ones that deploy PIP when they plan to fire someone. This happens because the management does not have a clear vision of the root causes to decipher.

Therefore, HR managers or leaders have to be sure when they are planning to use PIP as a last resort to firing someone. Whenever an employee is put on PIP, he or she already gets the idea that he or she is about to be fired. Therefore, they might not even put effort into improving their performance on probation.

Decipher the root cause and why your management wants to push the PIP

As an HR manager or a strategist in-charge of preparing a PIP for an employee, you must know the root cause. Without knowing what is exactly the “cause” , making a PIP for the targeted employee can put your reputation at risk.

Modern HR managers often say that they do not prefer to go for the PIP until they know the exact reason. The modern approach is more human and less driven by punishments. They often say that PIP would fit those who are not in a mood to do well in the organization intentionally and those who are unwilling to be cooperative to leave when asked to.

Therefore, at times like this, diversions like PIP are deployed into the organization. However, it can give a scare to other employees as well. They will be terrified of being the next candidate to be put on probation, despite having a permanent job scale already.

Ensure that you have the entire performance report of the targeted employee before PIP

You must get the hold of the existing performance report of some sort. It will tell you the warning signs about the targeted employee’s performance in the company.

If there are no warning signs as such, and the management is still pushing you to prepare a PIP, you have to decide which way you would prefer to go for firing this employee. Sometimes, management wants to have a scapegoat to overshadow its fault to earn the desired results. So, they find PIP to be one of the safest ways of letting a lousy or a naive employee go without reason.

Therefore, to me, PIP can be the only safest option when you have no other alternatives left to fire a troublesome employee. However, the same strategy should be avoided when a face-to-face consultation can be enough.

Image source: Pexels

 

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