UNCLASSIFIED (U)

3 FAM 2820 

PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL SYSTEM FOR GENERAL SCHEDULE AND PREVAILING RATE EMPLOYEES

(CT:PER-991;   05-18-2020)
(Office of Origin:  GTM/CSTM)

3 FAM 2821  GENERAL

3 FAM 2821.1  Authorities

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

The authorities cited for this subchapter are:

(1)  5 U.S.C. 43, 45 and 53;

(2)  5 CFR 430, Subpart B; Parts 432, 451 and 531; and

(3)  22 U.S.C. 2651a.

3 FAM 2821.2  Purpose

3 FAM 2821.2-1  Performance Appraisal System

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

The Department's performance appraisal system establishes the framework of policies and the parameters the Department must follow for the administration and operation of the performance appraisal program for covered employees as required in 5 CFR 430.204.  The effective date of the Department-wide performance appraisal system is January 1, 2008.

3 FAM 2821.2-2  Department-Wide Appraisal Program

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

The Department-wide performance appraisal program establishes specific requirements and procedures that will govern performance management for all covered employees.  The effective date of the Department-wide performance appraisal program is January 1, 2015.

3 FAM 2821.2-3  Coverage

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

All employees of the Department are covered by these regulations, except for those specifically excluded below and by law or regulation:

(1)  Employees whose employment is fewer than 120 days, the minimum period of the appraisal program;

(2)  Employees serving in temporary appointments for less than one year, who agree to serve without a performance evaluation, and who will not be considered for reappointments or pay increases based, in whole or in part, on performance;

(3)  Experts and consultants whose positions were excluded from coverage under the provisions of 5 U.S.C.  43 by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) on September 26, 1996; and

(4)  Senior Executive Service, Senior Level and Scientific or Professional employees.

3 FAM 2821.2-4  Equal Employment Opportunity

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. The principles of equal treatment and opportunity apply to all persons and the furtherance of these principles is the responsibility of all employees.

b. Rating officials must comment, as appropriate, on the rated employee's furtherance of equal employment opportunity principles in such ways as fairness to minority groups, women, and all employees in making selections, in encouraging and recognizing achievements and sensitivity to developmental needs.

3 FAM 2821.3  Responsibilities

3 FAM 2821.3-1  Director General

(CT:PER-991;   05-18-2020)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

The Department's Director General of the Foreign Service and Director of Global Talent:

(1)    Exercises final management authority over all aspects of the Department’s performance appraisal system and its associated appraisal program; and

(2)    May waive application of a performance appraisal program requirement other than that which is required by statute, OPM regulations or the Department’s approved performance appraisal system upon good cause shown.

3 FAM 2821.3-2  Bureau Executive Offices

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Assistant Secretaries or equivalent exercise managerial authority over those aspects of the performance appraisal program within their organization, including holding delinquent raters accountable for untimely performance appraisal submissions.

b. Executive directors administer the provisions of the Department-wide program within their bureaus, and are responsible for ensuring compliance with the law, that technical reviews are performed accurately, and that all rules, regulations, internal policies and procedures governing performance appraisals are adhered to.

c.  Executive directors are responsible for ensuring appropriate training and guidance are provided to all covered employees, and rating and reviewing officials in their bureaus.

d. All bureau Executive Offices should:

(1)  Conduct orientation sessions for new managers, supervisors, and employees;

(2)  Notify new supervisors to review performance plans, and outgoing supervisors that interim or final appraisals need to be completed;

(3)  Provide training sessions for bureau personnel as needed (e.g., at the end of the rating cycle to inform personnel of requirements and deadlines);

(4)  Provide advice and counseling to bureau personnel upon request;

(5)  Monitor the process to ensure that performance plans, progress reviews and ratings are completed for all personnel;

(6)  Consider and decide on requests for extensions to review performance plans/appraisals;

(7)  Evaluate the processes throughout the year by meeting with managers, rating officials and employees;

(8)  Encourage employees to take a part in the performance appraisal process; and

(9)  Reward good performance through the Department Awards Program (3 FAM 4800) and consider eligible employees for Quality Step Increases (3 FAM 3124.4).

3 FAM 2821.3-3  GTM/Civil Service Global Talent Management (CSTM)

(CT:PER-991;   05-18-2020)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

GTM/CSTM administers the Department's performance appraisal program and provides oversight, training and guidance to employees and bureaus in accordance with established guidelines.  Periodically, GTM/CSTM will evaluate the effectiveness of the Department's performance appraisal program.

3 FAM 2821.3-4  GTM/Employee Relations (ER)

(CT:PER-991;   05-18-2020)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

GTM/ER, or a bureau’s delegated GTM division, as applicable, advises executive directors and rating and reviewing officials, as appropriate, on establishing performance improvement plans to address unacceptable performance, and the withholding of within-grade increases as well as other performance-based actions.

3 FAM 2821.3-5  GTM/Grievance (G)

(CT:PER-991;   05-18-2020)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

GTM/G advises employees on the procedures available to resolve grievances or disputes relating to the contents of a rating of record.

3 FAM 2821.3-6  Rating Officials

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

Rating Officials:

(1)  Develop performance plans in consultation with each employee generally within 45 days of the first day of the rating cycle or when the employee is being initially assigned to a new job.  Additionally, plans should be reviewed within 45 days of the arrival of a new supervisor;

(2)  Ensure that work commitments and performance standards are written at the “Fully Successful” level, aligned to organizational goals, include measurable results, and are clearly communicated to the employee;

(3)  Develop and communicate performance plans for employees on details or temporary assignments over 120 days, and in long-term training;

(4)  Provide employee training and development opportunities.  Individual development plans are recommended for each employee and can be set at the beginning of the appraisal period;

(5)  Discuss the employee's performance periodically.  Provide feedback to the employee on performance throughout the appraisal period.  Discussion may include strengths and weaknesses and suggest ways to improve performance and increase opportunities for career advancement.  At least one formal progress review is required annually;

(6)  Inform reviewing official on performance and progress of employees under the employee responsibility throughout the appraisal period;

(7)  Complete an interim performance rating for any employee who works under a written performance plan for the minimum period of 120 days or longer, within 45 days of the employee or the rater leaving the position;

(8)  Request input (statement of accomplishments) from the employee;

(9)  Prepare an annual performance appraisal for each employee generally within 45 days after the end of the cycle.  Provide a single narrative summary that addresses the employee's overall performance of each job element, regardless of the summary level determination, as part of the employee's appraisal report;

(10) Recognize employees under the Department’s award program throughout the year (Refer to 3 FAM 4800 and 3 FAM 3124.4 for additional information); and

(11) Take appropriate action to address unacceptable performance.

3 FAM 2821.3-7  Reviewing Officials

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

Reviewing Officials:

(1)  Ensure that procedures are established and followed throughout the appraisal process, and that all employees in the organization are treated fairly;

(2)  Ensure rating officials carry out their performance management responsibilities, are held accountable and evaluated accordingly;

(3)  Communicate organizational goals and objectives to rating officials for inclusion in employee performance plans;

(4)  Ensure written performance plans are established in accordance with established deadlines;

(5)  Ensure consistency in performance plans and appraisals across the organization for the same job series and grade levels where appropriate;

(6)  Ensure development and training opportunities are considered;

(7)  Ensure that rating officials adequately monitor performance throughout the appraisal period and conduct at least one formal progress review.  Ensure that rating officials take appropriate action to address poor performance when it becomes apparent;

(8)  Review evaluation reports for thoroughness, objectivity, soundness, and compliance with evaluation instructions.  Review the rating to determine whether the employee's work has been measured in an objective manner, that the basis for the rating is supported and is clearly documented on the appraisal report, and that the report is in compliance with applicable rules, regulations and procedures;

(9)  Have final approval of performance plans, interim ratings and ratings of record when an employee and rating official disagree (3 FAH-1 H-2823.2); and

(10) Certify that appropriate recognition is provided.

3 FAM 2821.3-8  Employees

(CT:PER-991;   05-18-2020)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

Rated Employees:

(1)  Accept responsibility for his or her performance;

(2)  Familiarize him or herself with the 3 FAM 2820 and 3 FAH-1 H-2820 regulations and procedures;

(3)  Discuss the performance plan, progress review or appraisal with the rating official or the reviewing official at any time during the rating cycle;

(4)  Participate with the rating and reviewing officials in formulating performance plans;

(5)  Communicate changes in performance to rating and reviewing officials if one or more job elements change during the rating cycle;

(6)  Meet periodically with the rating official to discuss performance;

(7)  Inform the rating official of any circumstances which should be considered in evaluating his or her performance;

(8)  Provide accomplishments to the rating official for consideration in preparing the rating;

(9)  Review completed appraisal report on Form DS-7644, Civil Service Performance Plan and Appraisal;

(10) Acknowledge receipt of the performance plan, interim appraisal and  rating of record, and that the appraisal discussion took place in a timely manner as outlined in 3 FAM 2822.6(d), generally within 10 calendar days;

(11) Understand their signatures are not required for certification, as it is an acknowledgment of receipt and does not indicate agreement or disagreement with the contents of the plan or the overall rating; and

(12) May submit to their bureau GTM/EX office performance-based letters of commendation or similar materials for inclusion in the electronic official personnel folder, where applicable.

3 FAM 2822  Program REQUIREMENTS FOR The Department-wide PERFORMANCE APPRAISAL PROGRAM

3 FAM 2822.1  Appraisal Period

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Employees are appraised annually from January 1 to December 31.  Employees must be on board for at least 120 days to receive a rating.

b. The appraisal period for new employees, who are brought on board and have established plans by September 3, starts when they come on board, and ends December 31 of the current year.

c.  For employees who are on board after September 3 or employees who are assigned a new supervisor after September 3, the appraisal period begins when the new employee came on board or when the new supervisor was assigned, and ends December 31 of the next year.

3 FAM 2822.2  Designation of Rating and Reviewing Officials

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. At the beginning of the appraisal period, or when a rating or reviewing official leaves, the rating and reviewing officials must be designated and the employees informed.

b. Normally, the rating official will be the rated employee's supervisor and the reviewing official will be the rating official's supervisor.

c.  Generally the reviewing official becomes the rating and reviewing official if the rating official position is vacant.  If unusual circumstances or questions arise, e.g., both rating and reviewing positions are vacant, the executive director decides who will perform the rating and reviewing official functions.  The circumstances will be documented on the appraisal form, the rating and reviewing officials clearly identified and the employee is informed.

    NOTE:  A person must occupy a position that is classified as supervisory in order to be designated as a rating or reviewing official.  Team leaders do not meet the supervisory criteria; therefore, they may neither perform the rating nor reviewing function.  Team leaders may provide performance information to supervisors, but only “classified” supervisors may assign a performance rating.

3 FAM 2822.3  Establishment of Performance Plans

3 FAM 2822.3-1  When A Plan Is Required

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

Performance plans should generally be established within 45 days after:

(1)  The beginning of an appraisal period;

(2)  The employee is initially assigned to the job or new position, e.g., via reassignments, promotions, or a change to a lower-grade;

(3)  A change in supervisor.  The new supervisor may elect to either retain the performance plan with no changes in work commitments, or establish a new plan with new work commitments in consultation with the employee.  If a new plan is established, then the supervisor must consult with the employee and get approval from the reviewing official.  In either case, the new supervisor must communicate performance expectations, goals and objectives, individual and organizational, to each employee, at least at the fully successful level; and

(4)  The beginning of a temporary assignment (e.g., detail, temporary promotion, or long-term training) that is expected to last at least 120 days.

      NOTE:  When there is a change in a supervisor with less than 120 days left in the appraisal period, and the employee has received a rating of record, the new performance plan will add the remaining time to the next rating period, e.g., if the interim appraisal covered the period ending September 15, the new rating period will be for September 16 to December 31 of the following year (3 FAM 2824.5-2(d)).

3 FAM 2822.3-2  Contents of Plan

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. In 5 CFR 430.206 (b), it requires that each employee be covered by an appropriate written or otherwise recorded, (i.e., electronically) performance plan based on work assignments and responsibilities outlined in the position description.  The plan establishes expected performance and identifies individual, and, where applicable, team accountability for accomplishing organizational goals.

b. The plan includes five (5) critical performance elements against which employees must be rated.

c.  Critical Performance Element 1 consists of 3-5 work commitments, describing what the employee is expected to accomplish and how the employee will be measured during the rating cycle.

d. Critical Performance Element 2-5 are competency-based and describe how an employee performs his or her work.

3 FAM 2822.3-3  Changes to the Plan During the Appraisal Period

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

When assignments change during the appraisal period, and those changes significantly impact the work commitments under Critical Performance Element 1, the performance plan must be revised.  An employee must perform under the changed parts of the plan for at least 120 days in order to be rated under that particular part of the plan.

3 FAM 2822.4  Establishment of Critical Performance Elements

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

A critical performance element measures individual performance and is used to assign a summary rating level.  Critical performance elements are work assignments or responsibilities and competencies so vital that a rating of "Not Successful" performance on the element will result in a determination that the employee’s overall performance is “Not Successful.”

3 FAM 2822.4-1  Critical Performance Element 1 (Work Commitments and Standards)

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Critical Performance Element 1 consists of 3-5 work commitments.

b. Work commitments are results that the employee is expected to accomplish during the rating period.  Work commitments must be written at the “Fully Successful” level and must align with the strategic goals and plans of the Department, and bureau-office.  Work commitments should be consistent with the employee’s assignments and responsibilities, and the objectives of the organization.  Work commitments should be clear, concise and must focus on results, (e.g. outcomes, and services-products).  They should also include how results will be measured and evaluated.  Measures must be established at the “Fully Successful” level and should incorporate applicable standards of quantity, quality, timeliness, and cost effectiveness.

3 FAM 2822.4-2  Critical Performance Elements 2-5 (Competencies)

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Critical Performance Elements 2-5 are competency-based standards that describe how an employee performs his or her work.  These elements are mandatory and apply to all covered employees.

b. There are different competency-based critical performance elements for non-supervisory and supervisory employees.

3 FAM 2822.5  Generic Performance Standards

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. The Department uses Generic Performance Standards (Form DS-7644, Civil Service Performance Plan and Appraisal) as the means of assigning element appraisal levels.

b. The three element appraisal levels used to assess the employees’ critical performance elements are:  (1) Exceeds Expectations, (2) Fully Successful, and (3) Not Successful.

c.  Each appraisal level is defined as follows:

(1)  Exceeds Expectations:  This is a level of unusually good performance.  The quality and quantity of the work under this element are consistently above average;

(2)  Fully Successful:  This is a level of good, sound performance.  The quality and quantity of the work under this element are those of a fully competent employee.  The performance represents a level of accomplishment expected of the majority of employees; and

(3)  Not Successful:  The quality and quantity of the employee’s work under this element are not adequate.  The employee’s work products fall short of requirements.

3 FAM 2822.6  Establishing Performance Plans, Interim Appraisals and Ratings of Record

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Performance plans and appraisals are established on Form DS-7644, Civil Service Performance Plan and Rating of Record, with the signatures of the rating and reviewing officials.

b. The rating and reviewing officials’ signatures on Form DS-7644, document that the plan was established, the interim appraisal and the rating of record was completed by the rating official, approved by the reviewing official, discussed with and received by the employee.

c.  An employee’s signature is not required, as it is an acknowledgment of receipt and does not indicate agreement or disagreement with the contents of the plan or the overall rating.  The rating official must give the employee the opportunity to acknowledge receipt of the performance plan, interim appraisal and the rating of record.  An employee’s refusal to sign the performance plan does not indicate that the employee cannot be held accountable for the contents of the plan.

d. Barring any extenuating circumstances, the employee has 10 calendar days to acknowledge receipt of the plan, interim appraisal and rating of record for review.  If after the 10 days, the employee has not acknowledged receipt, a copy with the rating and reviewing officials signatures is provided to the employee.

e. Extensions to review the plan, interim appraisal or rating of record may be granted on a case-by-case basis by the Executive Office.

3 FAM 2823  MONITORING PERFORMANCE

3 FAM 2823.1  General

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

Employees are retained on the basis of the adequacy of their performance.  Inadequate performance is to be corrected and employees should be separated who cannot or will not improve their performance to meet required standards, 5 U.S.C. 2301(b)(6).  At any time during the appraisal period, when an employee's performance is found to be less than “Fully Successful” the rating official must take the necessary steps to remedy the problem.  Appropriate action includes counseling, formal or informal training or a performance improvement plan.

3 FAM 2823.2  Performance Review

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. At least one performance review must take place during the appraisal period.  The performance review should take place within 30 days of the mid-point of the appraisal period.

b. Rating officials must use the Mandatory Mid-Year Review Form DS-7645 to document the mid-point performance review.  This form does not become a part of the eOPF or the appraisal report.  The rating official should retain the original performance review form and provide a copy to the employee.  The date of the performance review must be documented on Form DS-7644, Civil Service Performance Plan and Appraisal Form.

3 FAM 2823.2-1  Performance Review Discussion

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

The performance review discussion should, as appropriate, cover:

(1)  Employee's job elements and performance standards;

(2)  Employee's progress toward accomplishing the elements;

(3)  Need for changes to the performance plan;

(4)  Employee's strengths and weaknesses;

(5)  Performance deficiencies and recommendations on how to improve them;

(6)  Developmental training and assignments; and

(7)  Supervisory and employee's expectations for the remainder of the appraisal period.

3 FAM 2823.3  Probationary Evaluation

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Employees appointed on a career-conditional basis, generally, serve a one-year probationary period.  These employees are subject to the same evaluation schedule and procedures as non-probationary employees.

b. During the probationary period, the rating official must work closely with the probationary employee, discussing work, identifying performance problems, and offering guidance.

c.  Separation may be recommended at any time during the probationary period, after the employee has been employed for at least 30 days.

3 FAM 2823.4  Unacceptable Performance

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. An employee performing at the “Not Successful” level in one or more critical element(s) at any time during the performance appraisal period must be notified of the critical element(s) for which performance is “Not Successful” and be afforded an opportunity period to improve.  He or she must be placed on a Performance Improvement Plan, Form DS-1765, for at least 45 calendar days or longer.  Notification of “Not Successful” performance may occur at any time during the appraisal cycle, including the end of the performance appraisal period.

b. At the conclusion of the opportunity period, if the employee's performance continues to be “Not Successful” action must be initiated to reduce in grade or remove the employee in accordance with 3 FAM 4550 and 5 U.S.C. 4303.

3 FAM 2824  APPRAISING PERFORMANCE

3 FAM 2824.1  Minimum Period

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

Upon receiving the performance plan, employees must work under this plan for a minimum period of 120 days before a rating can be given.

3 FAM 2824.2  Appraisal Levels

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

Four summary appraisal levels are derived from the Generic Performance Standards:

·         Not Successful

·         Fully Successful

·         Exceeds Expectations

·         Outstanding

3 FAM 2824.3  Conversion Technique for Determining a Summary Level

3 FAM 2824.3-1  General

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

The conversion technique used to determine the overall summary level for a rating of record or interim performance rating for the Department-wide program is as follows:

(1)  Outstanding:  All work commitments (Critical Performance Element 1) and all competencies (Critical Performance Elements 2-5) must be rated Exceeds Expectations;

(2)  Exceeds Expectations:  Fifty (50) percent or more of work commitments (Critical Performance Element 1) are rated Exceeds Expectations with the remainder rated at Fully Successful, and 50 percent or more Critical Performance Elements 2-5 are rated Exceeds Expectations with the remainder rated at Fully Successful;

(3)  Conditional Criteria:  If an employee is rated Exceeds Expectations for 50 percent or more of Work Commitments, and is rated Fully Successful for more than 50 percent of Critical Performance Elements 2 – 5, the summary level rating is Fully Successful;

(4)  Fully Successful:  Less than 50 percent of work commitments (Critical Performance Element 1) are rated Exceeds Expectations, with the remainder rated at Fully Successful, and Critical Performance Elements 2-5 are rated Fully Successful or higher; and

(5)  Not Successful:  One or more work commitments (Critical Performance Element 1) or any Critical Performance Element 2-5 is rated Not Successful.

3 FAM 2824.4  Preparation of Appraisal

3 FAM 2824.4-1  Input to Appraisal

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Employees should provide the rating official or reviewing official (as appropriate) with a written summary or list of accomplishments, generally 45 days before the end of the appraisal period but prior to the appraisal being finalized.  The input should address the employee’s performance and accomplishments with respect to the critical performance elements.

b. Any written comments that the employee wants considered by the rating official and by the reviewing official must be forwarded by the employee to the rating and reviewing officials.

3 FAM 2824.5  Performance Input, Interim Performance Ratings, and Ratings of Record

3 FAM 2824.5-1  Performance Input

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Performance input is used for employees who are detailed, temporarily promoted, on long-term training or otherwise assigned away from their normal duties for at least 120 days during the rating cycle.

b. The supervising official of the detail-temporary assignment or the training-program coordinator of the long-term training provides performance input.  Input includes objectives of the detail, temporary assignment, or long-term training and overall performance.

c.  Performance input should generally be provided within 45 days after the end of the detail or temporary assignment.  Timely input should also be provided at the end of the first rating cycle if the detail overlaps two rating cycles.

d. Performance input provided should be considered by the home office rating official in preparing the rating of record.

3 FAM 2824.5-2  Interim Performance Ratings

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. An interim performance rating is an assignment of an overall performance rating that occurs before September 3 of the appraisal period.

b. An employee must have worked under written or otherwise, i.e., electronically recorded elements, and performance standards for the minimum 120-day appraisal period in order to receive an interim performance rating.

c.  An interim performance rating must be completed prior to or within 45 days after an employee or a rating official leaves a position.  Any performance input should be taken into consideration for the interim appraisal.  The interim performance rating is prepared by the current rating official, approved by the reviewing official, and the appraisal report is forwarded to the employee's new rating official, if applicable.  The new rating official must take the appraisal report into consideration in deriving the employee's rating of record.  When the employee transfers to another agency, the interim rating will be forwarded to the transfer agency for processing in accordance with the receiving agency's regulations.

d. Generally, if an interim performance rating is completed before September 2, the interim should not be converted into the rating of record as there are still 120 days left in the appraisal period.  The rater will initiate a new Form DS-7644, Civil Service Performance Plan and Appraisal and complete the rating of record.

e. If there are fewer than 120 days left in the annual appraisal period, (e.g., an employee is promoted after September 3 and will be rated at the lower grade), an annual rating of record, not an interim performance rating, is completed, approved by the reviewing official, and no other rating is required for that rating period.  (The remaining time in the appraisal period should be covered in the next rating cycle beginning immediately after the date of the previous rating of record. This will in effect make the next rating period greater than 12 months).

3 FAM 2824.5-3  Ratings of Record

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. A rating of record must be prepared by the home office (office that holds the permanent position) rating official and approved by the reviewing official at the end of the appraisal period for all employees, including employees on long-term training, details, or other temporary assignments.

b. The rating of record must take into consideration the employee's performance for the entire appraisal period.

c.  The employee must have worked at least 120 days under written elements and standards in order to receive a rating of record.

d. The official preparing the rating of record at the end of the appraisal cycle must take into consideration any interim performance ratings and performance input.

    NOTE:  When an employee is retiring or accepting employment with a private firm, an interim performance rating or rating of record is not required, if the rater and employee mutually agree in writing it serves no purpose to the Department and the employee.

3 FAM 2824.5-4  Extended Rating Periods

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

A rating period may be extended beyond December 31 under the following circumstances:

(1)  The employee was on extended sick leave and did not work under an approved performance plan for at least 120 days as of December 31.  A rating of record should be prepared as of the date that the employee completes 120 days under the approved performance plan; and

(2)  The departing supervisor did not complete an interim rating or rating of record, and the employee has not worked under performance standards established by the new supervisor for at least 120 days as of December 31.  A rating of record should be prepared by the rating official or when appropriate by the reviewing official as of the date that the employee completes 120 days under the approved performance plan. (However, if the employee received a rating of record for that year, then the rating period is not extended, the current rater should add the remaining time to the next rating period).

3 FAM 2825  Grievances

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Once the appraisal is finalized, i.e. the rating of record is in the electronic Official Personnel Folder and the employee is still dissatisfied, the employee can seek redress through the Department's administrative grievance process (3 FAM 4700) or a negotiated grievance process.  (Only a rating of record may be grieved.)

b. Decisions rendered through the administrative grievance process are final.

c.  Under 3 FAM 4700 employees have no administrative appeal rights outside of the Department.

3 FAM 2826  OFFICIAL RECORDS

3 FAM 2826.1  Appraisal Reports

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Form DS-7644, Civil Service Performance Plan and Appraisal, will be used to document ratings of record and interim performance ratings, by the Department deadline, which is generally within 45 calendar days of the end of the appraisal period.

b. After all required reviews and approvals are completed the rating of record is placed in the eOPF.

3 FAM 2826.2  Amending the Employee’s Electronic Official Personnel Folder (eOPF)

(CT:PER-991;   05-18-2020)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. The Director General of the Foreign Service and Director of Global Talent (Director General) is authorized to amend, explain, supplement, or remove material in an employee's eOPF.  This includes the rating of record, when the Director General determines that the action is justified to correct an error or prevent an injustice.  This action must be justified in writing and the employee must be informed by the appropriate office of the action taken.

b. At any time, an employee may submit unclassified material with a request that it be included in his or her eOPF.  Such material must be related to performance, and may include interim ratings that are not ratings of record, but may not contain inadmissible comments.

c.  Employees may seek removal or amendment of performance appraisal material that is inadmissible, or has been included through procedural error according to 3 FAM 4700 or a negotiated grievance process.  Untimely or incomplete information or factual errors in the eOPF may be corrected through the Privacy Act procedure defined in 22 CFR 171.30 - 171.35.

3 FAM 2826.3  Technical Review

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

a. Executive directors, or their designees, are responsible for a technical review of all employees’ appraisals within their respective bureau(s).  The review considers the objectivity and fairness of the rater or reviewer and whether sufficient information is provided by the rater or reviewer to support the information contained in the appraisal report as well as the rating level.  The executive director is responsible for ensuring:

(1)  Compliance with the rules, regulations, and procedures governing performance plans and appraisals;

(2)  The completeness and suitability of comments contained in the appraisal report; and

(3)  The performance plan, progress review and appraisal report having been properly documented on applicable forms. (See 3 FAH-1 H-2820).

b. Executive directors, or their designees, certify that the technical review of the appraisal has been completed by signing Form DS-7644, Civil Service Performance Plan and Appraisal.

3 FAM 2826.4  Inadmissible Comments

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

The executive office must take the necessary steps to prevent submission of reports containing inadmissible comments.  These include, but are not limited to, references to race, color, religion, physical or personal characteristics, and references that identify other employees by name or a value that can be associated with an employee (e.g., title of position).  See 3 FAH-1 H-2820 for a complete list.

3 FAM 2826.5  Submission and Disposition of Appraisals

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service and Foreign Service raters)

The executive director must be responsible for obtaining the rating of record from rating officials, reviewing officials and rated employees, and for timely compliance with performance appraisal schedules.

3 FAM 2826.6  Delinquent Performance Appraisals

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service and Foreign Service Employees)

a. Assistant Secretaries or equivalent are responsible for holding their delinquent raters accountable.  Executive directors will track compliance, using Dashboard reports.  If an Assistant Secretary or equivalent determines that Civil Service raters were delinquent in the preceding cycle, then those raters will not receive an overall “Outstanding” rating when appraised for the current cycle.  Civil Service delinquent raters will not be eligible to receive a Performance award or a Quality Step Increase within one year of the date the appraisal was due.  For further information on Civil Service delinquent raters, refer to 3 FAH-1 H-2823.4.

b. For information on Foreign Service delinquent raters, refer to 3 FAH-1 H-2819.1-3.

3 FAM 2827  INCENTIVES AND RECOGNITION

3 FAM 2827.1  Performance Awards

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

Performance awards and other forms of recognition for performance are governed by 3 FAM 4800 and 5 CFR 451.

3 FAM 2827.2  Quality Step Increases

(CT:PER-759;   12-17-2014)
(State only)
(Applies to Civil Service Employees)

Quality step increases may be granted to employees in accordance with established criteria, 3 FAM 3124.4 and 5 CFR 531 Subpart E.

3 FAM 2828 and 2829  UNASSIGNED

UNCLASSIFIED (U)