Go to top of page

An employee disputed a performance rating of ‘not on track’ based both on his output and behaviours. The employee also claimed that his manager was treating him unfairly and his agency had breached his workplace rights in the way he was managed during the performance cycle.

The employee’s performance agreement was goals focused and included no performance expectations. The employee drafted his agreement including only his career goals and his aspiration to pursue a career outside the agency. However, the Merit Protection Commissioner was satisfied that the employee was aware of the performance expectations in his role. The team he was part of had a team expectations document that covered outputs and behaviours.

There were documented discussions between the employee and his manager on the level of output expected and the manager’s concerns about the employee’s output. The employee disputed that the output expected was reasonable. The Merit Protection Commissioner gave weight to the manager’s views, as the manager was accountable for the performance of the team. In addition, the documentary evidence of the way the manager explained the requirements to the employee, and responded to his concerns, did not suggest the manager’s requirements were unfair or arbitrary.

The Merit Protection Commissioner was also satisfied that the manager’s concerns about the employee’s behaviour were valid. The employee displayed a lack of judgement in his email communications with his colleagues and managers, and in his personal behaviour in the workplace. In the Merit Protection Commissioner’s view, the employee’s behaviour was inconsistent with the behavioural requirements for the team, which included collaborative working and respect for colleagues.

The Merit Protection Commissioner observed that, as evidenced by email communications, the manager had responded to the challenges involved in managing the employee with professionalism, patience and courtesy. The Merit Protection Commissioner found the outcome of the performance management process was fair and complied with the agency’s policy framework, and that the employee’s manager had treated him fairly in assessing and rating his performance.