360 Degree Feedback

360 Degree Feedback

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Feedback provided by subordinates, peers, co-workers and supervisors, including also feedback from customers and suppliers and self-assessment.

360 degree feedback is also known as "multi-rater" or "multi-source" feedback, as it comes from the people working around the employee. The number "360" is related to the 360 degrees in a circle: the person to be evaluated stays figuratively in the center of it. The person receiving the feedback often uses its results to plan his/her training and development, since it outlines his/her greatest strengths and weaknesses. This kind of feedback usually helps non-managers to be more effective and to understand what areas they should focus on, if they aim to cover a management role.

Some organizations also make administrative decisions, such as compensation or promotion, on the basis of the 360 degree feedback. [1]

Toolkit.png Developing a 360 Degree Feedback


Step by Step

  1. Define a "Competency Model" to work from: list the competencies you want to consider and define them. You can choose an existing model or create a new one, but remember that it is not worth re-inventing the wheel. See below some examples of skills to consider at different levels.
  2. Define “the core” of your Competency Model, by determining the aspects that are the same for all employees, no matter their function and level (e.g. aspects related to the mission and vision).
  3. Distinguish 3 or 4 hierarchical levels inside your organization (e.g. Upper – Middle –Lower level).
  4. Define competencies which apply to everybody (e.g. “Interpersonal Skills”), but with some differences in the expectations and requirements according to the different levels.
  5. Define competencies relevant only at some levels (e.g. “Building Talent” is not a crucial competence for non-manager employees).

Considering different skills at different levels

While developing a 360 degree Feedback that will be addressed to people at different levels, remember that the skills required at a certain level may be different than the skills needed to succeed at another level. Below you find some suggestions concerning which skills to consider at the different levels:

Vision, Strategy, Inspiration

  • Upper Lever
    This area is crucial.
  • Middle Level
    Only some items of this area should be taken into account.
  • Lower Level
    This area should not be encompassed.

Teambuilding and Relationship Building

  • Upper Lever
    Many skills belonging to this area should be included at this level. However, it is important to focus on the ability of encouraging cooperation between business units and of establishing partnerships rather than on the skills required at the middle level.
  • Middle Level
    Skills such as conflict resolution, team management, and the ability of encouraging team effectiveness are crucial at this level.
  • Lower Level
    Skills such as team working and cooperating should be included at this level.

Task Management and Execution

  • Upper Lever
    Skills related to achieving results are paramount at this level.
  • Middle Level
    Many skills of this area should be taken into consideration but the most basic ones should be excluded.
  • Lower Level
    Many skills of this area should be included, especially those focused on task management and job performance. [2]

Job Aid

Pdf.png Developing a 360 Degree Feedback

Link icon.png Web Resources
Below you have a list of selected websites where you can find further information on how to develop a 360 Degree Feedback:
Link Content
360 Degree Feedback Surveys Sample of 360 Degree Feedback Surveys.
Mistakes to avoid Ten mistakes to avoid when conducting 360 Degree Feedback.


  1. Wikipedia (25 May 2009), humanresources.about.com (25 May 2009), www.custominsight.com (25 May 2009)
  2. humanresources.about.com (17 Septemebr 2009), www.custominsight.com (17 September 2009)