Guide to an Employee Self-Evaluation (With Examples)

Updated June 22, 2023

Many companies require their employees to complete self-evaluations as part of the performance appraisal process that measures their performance during a specific time. Employers may use these to evaluate individual performance more easily and encourage self-awareness among employees. Learning more about employee self-evaluations may be useful if you work for a company that uses this tool regularly. 

In this article, we discuss what an employee self-evaluation is, explain how to write one, offer some tips to help you improve the quality of your self-evaluation and provide some examples for you to review when completing your own. 

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What is an employee self-evaluation?

An employee self-evaluation is a process that requires an employee to assess their own performance in the workplace. Employers may require these evaluations regularly, such as once a year or once a quarter. In them, employees may describe their achievements and share their professional progress over the last year or few months. They may also discuss their strengths and what they could do to improve their performance. Self-evaluations can be a useful way to encourage employees to be more thoughtful, self-aware and reflective, and they often motivate them to improve their performances.

Self-evaluations can help facilitate more productive and positive conversations between an employee and their employer by allowing employees to review their own performance. They also provide a way for employees to provide valuable feedback to their managers. For example, an employee might mention their desire to improve their sales quota in their evaluation, which may provide their manager with insight into how to improve the company's sales process. If both employees and their managers are willing to learn from them and make improvements, these evaluations may allow for increased productivity in the workplace. 

Related: Employee Self-Evaluation Examples and Tips

How to write a self-evaluation

Here are a few steps you can follow to write an effective self-evaluation:

1. Determine the requirements

First, review the requirements for your evaluation. These may vary, depending on whether it's for an annual review or a promotion. Determine the length of time that's necessary for evaluating your performance. If the evaluation includes the last year, review your important projects or assignments from the previous year to determine your achievements and areas of improvement more easily.

Related: How To Write a Self-Appraisal

2. Evaluate your strengths

Consider your positive qualities or the personal characteristics you have that help you perform well in your role. In your evaluation, emphasize how you use your unique skill set to handle your responsibilities effectively and mention your primary strengths. For example, you might discuss your conscientiousness and your interpersonal skills and provide a few examples of how you used those qualities to increase rapport with customers. 

Related: How To Identify Your Strengths in the Workplace

3. Mention your interest in improving

If you've made a mistake, mention your willingness to learn from it and your interest in improving within your role. Explain what you've learned in your current role and your willingness to continue learning. For example, if you hope to earn a promotion, you might discuss your desire to acquire new skills that might benefit you in that position. This can help demonstrate your willingness to take initiative and show your manager or supervisor that you're serious about progressing in your career.

Related: How Failures Lead to Success and Lessons That Can Help You Succeed

4. Provide helpful feedback

Try to incorporate some helpful feedback into your self-evaluation to help your manager improve processes or address issues that are preventing you from performing to the best of your ability. You might also offer feedback about the company in general. For example, if you work in a sales role, you might discuss your interest in a training program to improve your communication skills and help you practice speaking with different types of customers.

Related: How To Give Your Manager Feedback (With Examples)

5. Mention your ambitions

Self-evaluations can be a useful way to discuss your career aspirations with your employer. You may impress your employer by stating your desire to progress within your career. Explain your desire for professional development and ask about opportunities to acquire further qualifications. You might also discuss your desire for greater responsibility. 

Download Employee Self-Evaluation Template

To upload the template into Google Docs, go to File > Open > and select the correct downloaded file.

Related: How To Advocate for Yourself: An 8-Step Guide

Tips for writing a self-evaluation

Here are a few tips to help you improve the overall quality of your evaluation:

Promote your successes

When writing a self-evaluation, it's often important to highlight your primary successes. Mention any milestones or goals you achieved and discuss how you've progressed since your last evaluation. Try to be as specific as possible to highlight your unique value. Describe specific tasks and projects you completed that contributed to your overall success. You may also want to discuss your progress within the context of the company's mission and goals. Explain how your successes improved productivity and use numbers to quantify your achievements if possible. 

Address areas of improvement

In addition to highlighting your triumphs, it can also be important to address your mistakes and highlight how you plan to learn from them. Accepting responsibility for your mistakes can help you demonstrate your professionalism and integrity. You may also want to include additional feedback on how your manager's methods and actions affected your performance. Rather than simply listing your weaknesses, mention how you plan to address them. When describing an area where you don't meet your employer's expectations, mention how you're using your past mistakes to motivate yourself to improve.

Related: 20 Areas of Improvement for Employees

Share your accomplishments

Record your specific accomplishments and share them in your self-evaluation. Keep a list of your successful projects, tasks or assignments, and consider creating a separate list detailing any new responsibilities that you accepted. Try to spend a few minutes each week recording the highlights of your performance to ensure that you have enough information to include in your self-evaluation. For example, if you're a social media manager, you might measure your success by evaluating your increase in followers over a certain period of time. You may then incorporate your engagement metrics into your evaluation to highlight more specific accomplishments.

Related: Everything You Need To Know To Measure Success at Work

Set goals

Since employers often use self-evaluations to encourage their employees to create goals for future improvement, it's important to review your successes and areas of improvement to develop a set of specific goals. Spend some time learning about what the company hopes to accomplish in the next few months or over the next year and develop professional goals to help you contribute to those important business objectives. In addition, outline a few goals for personal improvement and provide yourself with a deadline for achieving those goals to demonstrate your interest in continuing to contribute to the workplace. 

Read more: Setting Goals To Improve Your Career

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Self-evaluation examples

Here are a few examples of thorough self-evaluations that you can use for guidance when writing your own:

Example 1: Software designer

In this self-evaluation, I plan to identify my professional strengths and report my recent accomplishments while mentioning a few areas where I believe I can improve my work performance. First, I believe I've made a positive impact on the office this year by maintaining an upbeat attitude throughout each quarter, even during our high-traffic periods when my team was responsible for completing several projects at one time. After I completed the most recent update to the company system, the office manager complimented me on my leadership skills and ability to encourage the rest of the team.

As for this year's accomplishments, I was able to represent Softworks at a design convention this summer. I attended a networking event where I helped recruit three potential hires and secured interviews with some new clients. In addition, I lead regular onsite training sessions that helped our freelance team improve their understanding and mastery of basic programming languages. I've realized that it's important for me to improve my in-office communication, and I plan to start scheduling regular meetings with the project managers. I believe this can help reduce the potential for miscommunication in the workplace.

Example 2: Elementary school teacher

In this self-assessment, I'm evaluating my performance during the last two semesters at Stony Brook Elementary. This is my second year of teaching at this institution, and I'm happy to report that my performance has improved significantly over the past 12 months. First, I'd like to mention how I've improved as a teacher. This year, I aimed to improve my classroom management skills by implementing several new techniques for engaging with students. This helped me provide my students with instruction more quickly and contributed to everyone completing their work more efficiently. 

Next, I want to mention an area where I feel I could improve. On average, my students this year tested consistently low in mathematics. To address this, I intend to start providing evaluative math quizzes throughout the year to evaluate my students' progress. I also plan to review possible third- and fourth-grade math curriculums over the summer.

Related: 33 Self-Evaluation Questions (Plus How To Make Your Self-Evaluation Meaningful)

Example 3: Sales associate

During the past six months that I've been working as a sales associate at Starmont Motor Sales, I've been able to cultivate relationships with new customers and provide existing customers with valuable insights into new products and features for their vehicles. I've also negotiated with an average of two customers each day to complete deals and increase sales. In addition, I've been able to maintain an average customer satisfaction rating of 9.5 out of 10. 

I hope to progress within Starmont Motor Sales within the next year and earn the title of sales team leader. To achieve this, I plan to complete a course on negotiation tactics to improve my ability to address customer concerns and enhance my persuasive skills. I also hope to improve my communication abilities and maintain more consistent contact with customers over the next few months. My goal for this year is to make at least eight sales each week, and I plan to continue to prioritize customer service and monitor my sales performance closely.

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