The Office of Human Resources

Year-End/Annual Performance Cycle — Important Information

Dear Brandeis Colleagues,

We are writing to share important information about our TAP Mid-Year Review outcomes as well as the TAP Year-End/Annual Performance Review Process. 

TAP -Talent Advancement Program Update

Brandeis began implementing the University’s new performance review process, TAP, for eligible staff last year, in advance of the Mid-Year Review. The Mid-Year Review launched on November 14, 2022 and closed on January 20, 2023. TAP is a positive step forward in our commitment to foster a culture of engagement and to support staff professional development and career growth. TAP puts a focus on frequent and ongoing development conversations, and is supported by Mid-Year and Year-End/Annual Reviews in Workday.

Mid-Year Review - Closed

Given that the Mid-Year Review was Brandeis’ first TAP initiative and in light of the learning curve associated with this new process, the University provided extra time for managers and staff to complete the Mid-Year Review. In doing so, we achieved a 73% completion rate!  As we are now familiar with the Mid-Year Review process, and to better align with Year-End/Annual Review deadlines, we should anticipate a shorter 2023 Mid-Year Review window, that will likely close before the end of the 2023 calendar year. If you are a full or part-time regular staff member who did not receive a Mid-Year Review during the 2022 cycle, please contact your Manager or Human Resources for guidance. 

Year-End/Annual Review – Launching Wednesday March 22, 2023

Training for staff and managers on the Year-End/Annual review is underway. Below you will find more information regarding this important TAP component, including overall requirements, timing and training resources.

Overall Requirements

  • Eligibility: 

    • All non-union full and part-time staff (excluding student employees and temporary staff), unionized library staff, and managers who supervise these staff, are required to complete a Year-End/Annual Performance Review. 

    • In order to be eligible to submit a Year-End/Annual Review with regard to their own performance, staff must be hired before January 1, 2023. 

    • Managers will be expected to complete Year-End/Annual Reviews to assess their staff’s performance regardless of the Managers’ hire date.

  • Like Mid-Year Reviews, Year-End/Annual Performance Reviews will be entered into Workday:
    • Staff self-evaluations will be routed in Workday to staff-members’ managers, who will complete the staff members’ Year-End/Annual Review in Workday. 
    • All eligible staff start the Year-End/Annual Review process by completing a self-evaluation in Workday.

What’s New for 2023 Year-End/Annual Reviews

  • We will be using new rating categories with new definitions: Exceeds Expectations, Successful, Developing and Improvement Needed are the new rating categories for 2023. These new ratings were developed in partnership with a manager focus group.

  • Performance Improvement Plans will only be required for Improvement Needed ratings.  

  • Managers who use the Improvement Needed rating for staff must consult their HR Business Partner to review associated steps, including issuing a Performance Improvement Plan.

  • The deadline for completion of 2023 Year-End/annual Performance Reviews will be earlier than in past years. See below for more information.

  • Staff hired on or after January 1st, but before April 1st, who are not eligible to complete a Year-End/Annual Performance Review may still be eligible for a merit award. Stay tuned for more information on merit increases later this spring. 

  • The format of the Year-End/Annual Performance Review form will change. As previously discussed, we have eliminated the paper review forms and implemented a streamlined and automated form in Workday.  This will allow all eligible staff to include information on their goals and accomplishments over the past year. Additionally, all staff, including managers, will be reviewed on a standard set of core competencies. Managers, who supervise at least one regular full or part-time staff member, will be assessed on both core competencies and additional competencies designed for managers.

Timing for 2023 Year-End/Annual Performance Reviews
  • On March 16, 2023 Year-End/Annual Review training began for managers and staff.

  • On March 22, 2023, the Year-End/Annual Review process will open and all eligible staff will be able to initiate self-evaluations. 

  • On May 19, 2023, the Year-End/Annual Review process will end.  This means that all self-evaluations and manager evaluations must be completed and submitted in Workday by May 19, 2023. 

  • On May 10, 2023 the merit process will begin and managers will again submit staff wage increases for approval by Senior Leadership directly into Workday. Additional information on the 2023 merit process will be made available following the April 2023 Board of Trustees’ Meeting.

  • In order to provide adequate time for the full cycle – Year-End/Annual Review, merit increases and payroll processing for July 1, 2023 - the date for completion and submission of Year-End/Annual Review cannot be adjusted or extended.


Support Resources

If you have questions or need additional guidance on this information, please contact the staff below.  We have also included some initial Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) below and we will continue to update the TAP website with additional information.

Question Contact Email

Reports to and other ITS technology issues. 

ITS Support

Performance Improvement Plan (PIP), zero increase or performance review questions. 

Liz Tierney

Suzanne Albright

Katharine Colanton

Leila Connolly

General compensation or equity questions. 

Erika Chin

Natalie Ippolito

Training Questions

Lisa Vigliotta

Cynthia Farquhar

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q:  When will the TAP Year-End/Annual Performance Review form be available in Workday and what are this year’s deadlines?

A:  The TAP Year-End/Annual Performance Review form for staff self-evaluations will be available in Workday on Wednesday March 22, 2023. The Year-End/Annual Performance Review cycle will close on May 19, 2023. This means that all managers must have their staff reviews completed and submitted in Workday on or before May 19, 2023. 

Q:  Is the timing for Year-End/Annual Performance reviews the same as in past years?

A:  Last year was the first year that we built merit increases into Workday and individual managers were responsible for entering their staff member’s increases into Workday. These increases were ultimately approved by senior leadership. We learned through experience that last year’s merit timeframe was much too tight to provide meaningful reporting, analytics and guidance to managers and senior leaders as merit increases were determined. This year’s schedule intentionally builds in time for merit increase review by divisional managers and senior leaders. Additionally, a staff member’s performance in the Year-End/Annual Review process should inform the amount of their increase. This is why it is important to complete Year-End/Annual reviews earlier this year.  

Q:  Can we anticipate that in future years, Year-End/Annual Performance Reviews will follow this timeline?

A:  Yes, we think that the move to an early May deadline will likely be permanent, but we are committed to reviewing the timelines for the 2023-2024 TAP program. The University will include staff and manager feedback into the process as we map out these timelines. 

Q:  Can staff who did not complete the Mid-Year Review still be eligible to complete the Year-End/Annual Review form?

A:  Yes.  Staff must be hired before January 1, 2023 to be eligible to complete a Year-End/Annual Performance Review. If a staff member did not complete the Mid-Year review because they are a new staff member, but they have now worked at the University long enough to be eligible to complete a Year-End/Annual Review, a review form will automatically populate in their Workday Inbox.   Also, if you are a full or part-time regular staff member who did not receive a Mid-Year Review during the 2022 cycle, please contact your Manager or Human Resources for guidance. 

Q:  Can staff who are not eligible to complete the Year-End/Salary Review Form still be eligible for a July 1, 2023 merit increase?

A:  Yes, staff hired before April 1, 2023 may be eligible to receive a merit increase (but are not required to) for July 1, 2023. HR will provide general guidelines on pay increase allocations for staff hired between January 1 - March 31.

Q: Is any documentation required for a staff member hired before April 1, 2023 to receive a merit increase? 

A: Yes, HR will provide a brief New Hire Salary Increase Form for this purpose. The form should state the rationale for the increase and substantiate that the staff member’s performance is “on track” in relation to expectations during this limited time period. This process will be handled outside Workday. Forms should be returned to HR/Compensation (

Q: Why are the eligibility dates different for receiving a Year-End/Annual Performance Review and a merit increase? 

A: Six months is the minimum amount of time to meaningfully assess a staff member’s performance. That is consistent with past practice. However, based on both managers’ feedback and best practice, the merit eligibility date was moved to April 1 to give managers flexibility if appropriate.

Q:  In past years, some departments requested and were granted extensions in order to complete Year-End/Annual Performance Reviews.  Will that happen again this year?

A:  No.  This year, unlike in prior years, the Year-End/Annual Performance Review is incorporated into Workday, as are merit increases. Because a staff member’s performance should inform any merit action, and because we need sufficient time to assist managers and senior leaders in assigning and approving merit increases, we cannot grant extensions for the completion of TAP Year-End/Annual Performance Reviews. 

Q: What is the 2023 merit increase pool this year?

A: The pool has not yet been finalized. Once final and approved, we will communicate this to the community as soon as possible.

Q: If a manager does not complete the annual performance review for their staff, will that impact their individual merit increases?

A: No, not at this time.  However, managers will be required to complete the annual performance reviews for their staff.  Their unit leader will be receiving status reports during the review period and be expected to reinforce this message in cases of noncompliance.

Q: Will Workday have automated ratings that are directly connected to merit increases?

A: This year, the ratings will not be “hardwired” to increase percentages. However, a staff member’s rating should inform their merit increase. HR will provide general guidelines on pay increase allocations by rating. 

Q: What is the tentative merit processing timeline?

A: As of right now, the proposed merit process dates are as follows:

  • Merit functionality opens in Workday on May 10.
  • During the May 10 - May 24 period, 1st level managers, Faculty Administrators/Deans/Chairs input merit increases. 
  • Between May 24 – June 5, HR prepares analytics for division managers (VPs, School Deans, etc.); division managers finalize increase recommendations.
  • Between June 6 and June 16, HR prepares analytics for final EVP review. EVPs finalize and approve merit recommendations by June 16.
  • June 19: Managers are notified by HR to communicate increases to their staff.
  • June 21: Staff are notified by HR to print increase notification worksheets.
  • July, 2023: Increases are reflected in the first pay in July (July 7th for hourly staff and July 14th for salaried staff).