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Developing a Performance Improvement Plan

Developing a Performance Improvement Plan

Begin your paper with an introduction and then provide a summary of the case study.

Employees’ performance is a critical aspect in organizations because it determines profits, market share, popularity, and customer loyalty, among others. Thus, organizations have embraced performance management to monitor the employees’ capabilities, goal achievement, and areas of improvement. The Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) is one of the tools that have been developed to assist supervisors with resolving performance matters. The PIP is ideal for highlighting discrepancies in performance, goals, and strategies that can be used to fulfill the staff’s expectations.

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Case Study

Three main things were responsible for the denial of research grants to 30 post-graduate students at the University of California. The disqualification news was delivered on Tuesday night by the university’s chancellor. The Federal Express was scheduled to pick up the Fulbright-Hays research grant applications at the university. However, the courier company failed to pick up the parcel due to a software anomaly. Late delivery of these applications led to the loss of an opportunity for thirty students, who had benefitted in the past. This time, honesty through email communication, poor communication from Federal Express, and bureaucratic management led to the rejection, which had a negative effect on the students’ careers (Murphy, 2004).

Based on the needs assessment, prepare an analysis of what should have happened, and what actually did happen, in the scenario.

Needs analysis is a critical tool that a company such as Federal Express or the University of California can use to make decisions (Ferreira & Abbad, 2013). The first step in a needs analysis is to identify the stakeholders and uses of the process. Secondly, one must identify the targeted population as well as the environment of service. Third, is the identification of needs. Fourthly, the importance of needs should be assessed (Hicks & Hennessy, n.d). Finally, results should be communicated to the relevant parties (HR-Guide, LLC., 2018).

Users, Uses, and Target Population: The report obtained from this needs analysis will be acted upon by Federal Express’ management and employees. The report will identify issues in the company’s workforce that need to be rectified. It will also play an important role in avoiding a similar occurrence in the future. The report will highlight aspects that may have been avoided to ensure that a better outcome is obtained in the future. The target population includes all institutions that use Federal Express services, such as the University of California.

Needs: The main expectation was that Federal Express communicate the software issue in good time to allow the University of California to seek alternative means of mailing, such as the post office. Poor/untimely communication resulted in delayed delivery of the applications and eventual disqualification of post-graduate students.

Solutions: Based on the cost analysis and impact approaches, the main solution for the current issue is ensuring that employees understand the importance of timely communication for efficiency.

The needs assessment highlights the need for efficient communication and collaborative decision-making. When Federal Express employees realized that there was a software malfunction, they did not communicate this to clients such as the University of California, who were expecting pickup. The waiting process or assumption that the malfunction would resolve cost 30 students an opportunity to compete in the Fulbright grant process. Such an approach would have been harmless for packages that lack critical deadlines. The employees should have informed their clients about the possibility of delay in the pickup, which would have aided in better decision-making. For instance, the University of California would have opted to deliver the applications to the post office or the nearest Federal Express office due to the need for urgent delivery. Failing to communicate incapacitated to make decisions that would avoid the occurrence of a negative outcome. In addition, the university employee should have involved other colleagues in making the decision regarding the accompanying email.

It is important to note that the concerned employees took actions that contributed to the eventual outcome. Federal Express’s courier that was in charge of picking up the applications failed to show up and did not communicate. The employees should receive a written warning that highlights their actions and the impact. They should be withdrawn from the current position for training on communication and its importance. The University of California employee who instructed the Education Department to send the package with FedEx’s explanation acted without consulting the officials. The emails provided a trail for late pickup and delivery of the applications as well. The employee requires training in decision-making and the need to involve other colleagues in this process. These strategies are intended to ensure that employees learn from the situation as well as their colleagues

As a Human Resources professional, create a performance improvement plan for each employee 

The Performance Improvement Plan

Employee and Position:

Manager/Supervisor and Position:

Overall manager and position:


Review Period

Current Date of review:

Future review date:

Expected Behaviors

  • Utilization of all communication channels
  • Involving other colleagues in decision-making
  • Communicating all abnormal occurrences that may affect clients negatively

Improvement Metrics

  • Customer satisfaction feedback
  • Clients’ view on communication
  • Co-worker’s feedback on the employees’ communication/cooperation


  • Undertake training sessions on communication
  • Study the institution’s policy on decision-making
  • Team building activities to emphasize the importance of collaboration

Consequences for Not Meeting Expectations

  • Termination of employees due to the intense impact of their actions on stakeholders.

Role of Managers

  • Create training programs
  • Engage the employees in goal-creation
  • Assess their progress
  • Compare their performance to expected behaviors
  • Use the metrics to determine favorable and unfavorable results
  • Determine the ultimate decision and communicate feedback to the employees

Prepare instructions for the manager on how to conduct a meeting with each employee about improvements and consequences.

It is important for the respective managers to meet both employees who were directly involved in the incident. The first step during the meeting is to go through the incident. This discussion should highlight the actual occurrences, their roles, and what should have happened. The second step is to understand the reasons for the decisions they made. The third step is to highlight the impact of their decision on the courier company, Federal Express, and the University of California’s post-graduate students. The manager should seek their input regarding the impact and strategies for improvement. Finally, the managers should highlight the various improvement plans that have been discussed at the higher levels. They should include the employees’ opinions on improvement to what they already have. Most importantly, the manager should ensure that employees are aware of the consequences that should follow if improvement does not occur. This meeting is expected to prepare the employees for the training process. The manager should document the discussion for future reference.  It should also uncover other systemic issues that may have led the employees to make such decisions.


Ferreira, R. R., & Abbad, G. (2013). Training Needs Assessment: Where We Are and Where We Should Go. Brazilian Administration Review, 10(1), 77-99.

Hicks, C., & Hennessy, D. (n.d). Hennessy-Hicks Training Needs Analysis Questionnaire And Manual. Retrieved from

HR-Guide, LLC. (2018). Needs Analysis: How to determine training needs.

Murphy, D. E. (2004). Missed Pickup Means a Missed Opportunity for 30 Seeking a Fellowship.


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Developing a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP)

Performance improvement plans, or PIPs, can be one of the most powerful tools for managing employee performance. Used correctly, a performance improvement plan can help a struggling employee get back on track or improve an area of weakness, so that the employee can move on to continued growth and opportunities within the organization.

Developing a Performance Improvement Plan

Developing a Performance Improvement Plan

In addition to correcting and improving employee performance, which is the desired outcome, a PIP can also protect the company when improvement does not occur. A PIP creates a paper trail that documents where improvement in performance did and did not occur, as well as what the company did to assist the employee toward a successful outcome. Another advantage of the PIP is that it typically costs less to work to improve an existing employee’s performance than to recruit, hire, and train a new employee.

To begin this Assignment, you will examine the case study, “Missed Pickup Means a Missed Opportunity for 30 Seeking a Fellowship,” provided in this week’s resources.

Then, to complete this Assignment, review the Learning Resources for this week, and other resources you have found in the Walden Library or online, and respond to the following bullets in a 3- to 5-page paper, which will include 2 Appendices.

  • Begin your paper with an introduction and then provide a summary of the case study.
  • Prepare a needs assessment to analyze both employees’ skill levels identified in the scenario.
  • Based on the needs assessment, prepare an analysis of what should have happened, and what actually did happen, in the scenario.
  • Based on the needs assessment, evaluate the appropriateness among possible choices of action (strategies), including discipline, development, improvement, or termination for the two employees.
  • As a Human Resources professional, create a performance improvement plan for each employee that outlines the following:
    • Expected behaviors;
    • Metrics for improvement;
    • Required action steps;
    • Consequences for not meeting the plan’s expected outcomes;
    • Their manager’s role.
  • Prepare instructions for the manager on how to conduct a meeting with each employee about improvements and consequences.

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