Google says it is increasing employee pay in the performance review revamp

Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google

David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Google is reviewing its performance appraisal process, implementing changes that will result in higher salaries, as the company seeks to ease the tension between employees and leadership over the pay issue.

Starting this week, Google is using a new performance review process called GRAD, which stands for Google Reviews and Development. It’s part of an effort to streamline the evaluation process, limiting reviews to once a year, rather than two, and putting more responsibility in the hands of managers rather than relying heavily on peer reviews, according to internal documents reviewed by CNBC. .

“In this new process, we anticipate that most Googlers will be modeled for higher pay than the old Perf system and the overall amount paid will also increase,” says one of the documents.

Google Search chief Prabhakar Raghavan reiterated this point at a meeting of the company’s town hall on Friday, according to two people familiar with the matter who asked not to be named because the information is confidential.

A Google spokesperson said in an email that the company “has nothing else to share.”

Employee pay has been a sensitive topic at Google. In the annual “Googlegeist” CEO Sundar Pichai Considering a key indicator of employee satisfaction, staff gave Google particularly poor marks on the comparison of pay and pay for similar jobs at other companies. Employees also downgraded their ratings of the performance review process and career growth opportunities.

The survey results were released in March and highlighted the challenges Google has faced since “Great resignation” with workers leaving their jobs at a record pace and tech companies clamoring for talent

Google employees have expressed their concerns directly to management, not just in the annual survey. A on meeting of all hands In December, Frank Wagner, Google’s vice president of compensation, answered the question of whether the company would provide a pay raise to cope with rising inflation, especially since Google’s revenue had increased during the pandemic with the price of shares which hit a record high in November.

Wagner said Google would not implement a general hike to match inflation even if executives had received pay. bumps.

Google is now making fundamental changes to how workers are paid and promoted. Under the new GRAD system, promotions will be determined primarily by management rather than a consortium of managers and peers. Employees, however, can still apply for promotions twice a year, documents show.

How to get promoted

The company is also abandoning its long-standing practice of lengthy promotional packages, which were lengthy forms that employees had to fill out and included reviews from bosses and colleagues. Managers will make promotion decisions as a group instead of having to solicit them separately from employees.

Google She said in March it will look to make changes to its long-standing “perf” process, which has been replicated in other companies in the industry. the information previously reported some of the details of the changes to the performance review.

As part of the new system, Google employees will receive a new tool for setting expectations for goals, or objectives and key outcomes (OKRs) as they are known, an inside note states. Employees will also receive “regular checkups” with their managers each quarter to discuss career development among other things, the documents state, addressing a central complaint among workers.

For employee ratings, Google is introducing a new scale with five different levels.

Most of the staff will be in the middle, which “reflects the significant impact they are having.” The two ratings below the half are “Moderate Impact” and “Insufficient Impact” and the two above are “Exceptional Impact” and “Transformative Impact” for those who “perform above or below that high standard”.

There is also a new promotion system, in which an employee’s manager will fill out a form to assess whether the person has shown the skills required for elevation.

“Googlers are not expected to already do next-level work to demonstrate that they are capable of achieving next-level success,” says a document. However, a company will be needed for the promotion.

“Googlers will then be considered for promotions if they demonstrate signs of success at that level of work,” the company said.

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