Guide to the Performance Diagnostic Survey

An overview guide to the Performance diagnostic survey

Jared Ellis avatar
Written by Jared Ellis
Updated over a week ago

What can I learn from this page?

An overview guide to the Performance diagnostic survey

Who is this guide for?

Account Admins, Survey Admins, Survey Creators

Culture Amp’s Performance Diagnostic survey measures the core factors found in successful approaches to performance management systems, such as developmental coaching, fairness, goal alignment, and continuous feedback. It's informed by decades of research in unconscious bias in decision making; the performance frameworks used by companies like Deloitte, Intel, and Google; as well as Culture Amp’s own research in uncovering the linkages between employee engagement and high performance. Continue reading to learn more or check out our on-demand course in Culture Amp Training.

Why You Should Assess How Employees Feel About Your Approach to Performance.

Organizations with employees who are more satisfied with their company’s approach to performance management are 1.3 times more likely to meet their financial targets, three times more likely to effectively manage change, 3.2 times more likely to encourage risk taking, and more than twice as likely to innovate2.

If you feel like your approach to performance management needs improvement, but you don’t know where to start, you’re not alone. Performance Management systems have, on average, a negative sixty (-60) Net Promoter Score (that is even worse than low fare airlines and cable companies)1. Without knowing where you stand, however, you have no basis or foundation for how to improve. Further, it’s not enough to just assess whether employees are satisfied, or to “know that folks are dissatisfied”, rather you need to dig into the specific underlying factors that employees are dissatisfied with if you intend to be armed with the data necessary to drive meaningful change.

Luckily, research shows that measuring the impact of performance management, providing that data to leaders, and then enabling them to take action is associated with a +94 increase in satisfaction with performance2. By collecting, understanding, and acting on feedback about your performance management approach, you can improve the system while knowing you will also positively impact your organization’s business objectives.

When Should You Use the Performance Diagnostic Template?

You want to implement (or change) your approach to performance management, but you don’t know where to start. Before embarking on a massive change in your approach, it’s helpful to gather insights into your employees’ concerns and motivations. A so-called “best practice” that was effective for other organizations might not makes sense for yours.

You want to encourage continuous feedback and recognition. Have your engagement results revealed that recognition and feedback are focus areas for you to take action? The Performance Diagnostic survey is an excellent way to quickly gather feedback on actions you can take to create a culture of continuous feedback and recognition within your organization.

You want to foster learning and developmental coaching. According to data collected from over 850,000 employees by Culture Amp in 2018, development is the #1 driver of engagement across all industries. The Performance Diagnostic survey allows you to know what actions to take so that your organization adopts a growth mindset that fosters ongoing developmental coaching at every level.

You want to create a fair, equitable, and inclusive approach to performance management. Culture Amp studied the effect that performance processes have on employee perceptions of fairness. Based on decades of Organizational Justice research the Performance Diagnostic measures the core components of a performance review process that enables employees from all backgrounds to achieve their full potential. These include minimizing bias, creating consistency, enabling employee voice, and acting with respect and compassion.

You want to align goals at every level of the organization. Studies have shown that employees are 56% more productive, on average, when they align their goals with the needs of their company’s3. Understanding the degree to which your organization’s goals line up with the with the day-to-day work of individuals and the teams they are members of is a key component of the Performance Diagnostic survey.

You want to know how well you’re doing with performance compared to others. Rather than just assessing your company’s approach against a set of best practices, the performance diagnostic allows you to determine what is most important to your workforce, while also providing rich benchmark comparisons, text analytics and an action framework driven by collective intelligence.

You want to know what’s working and where there’s room for improvement with your company’s approach to managing performance. The Culture Amp Performance Diagnostic is designed to be a health check of your organization’s approach to managing, measuring, and developing performance. Think of it as a 360 degree review of your company’s approach to performance management. However, the Performance Diagnostic template provides data that reveals what a successful approach to performance would like for your specific workforce, operating with your organization’s particular challenges and opportunities.


1. Seven Top Findings for Enabling Performance in the Flow of Work, Bersin, Deloitte Consulting LLP / Kathi Enderes, PhD, and Matthew Deruntz, 2018.

2. How to Make Performance Management Less Hated, Bersin, Deloitte Consulting LLP / Kathi Enderes, PhD, 2019

3. Rodgers, R., & Hunter, J. E. (1991). Impact of management by objectives on organizational productivity. Journal of Applied Psychology, 76(2), 322.

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