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NPR 3430.1D
Effective Date: October 19, 2016
Expiration Date: April 19, 2028
Printable Format (PDF)

Subject: Employee Performance and Communication System (EPCS) (Updated w/Change 3 on February 16, 2023)

Responsible Office: Office of the Chief Human Capital Officer

| TOC | ChangeHistory | Preface | Chapter1 | Chapter2 | Chapter3 | Chapter4 | Chapter5 | Chapter6 | AppendixA | AppendixB | ALL |

Chapter 3. Basic Provisions

3.1 Appraisal Period

3.1.1 The Agency-wide performance appraisal period is from May 1 through April 30.

3.1.2 The minimum period an employee can work under a performance plan before receiving a performance summary rating, also referred to as the rating of record, is 90 calendar days.

3.2 Rating Structure

3.2.1 Element Rating Levels. Each performance element is rated at one of the following levels:

a. Substantively Exceeds Expectations (Level 5). Performance that consistently exceeds the performance standards to a substantial degree for the element.

b. Meets Expectations (Level 3). Performance that fully and consistently meets the performance standards identified for the element.

c. Fails to Meet Expectations (Level 1). Performance that fails to meet the established performance standards for the element.

3.2.2 Performance Summary Rating Levels. In accordance with 5 CFR 430.208(d), the EPCS uses summary rating pattern level E.

3.2.3 An employee's summary rating is determined by calculating the average of 3 and 5 element ratings as follows:

a. 5.0 = 5 summary rating (Distinguished).

b. 4.0 - 4.9999 = 4 summary rating (Accomplished).

c. 3.0 - 3.9999 = 3 summary rating (Fully Successful)

3.2.4 If an employee is rated at the Fails to Meet Expectations (Level 1) on any element, the summary rating will be a Level 1 (Unacceptable) and approved by the reviewing official (or other appropriate higher level manager). An Unacceptable rating requires management action (reference section 4.8 of this directive).

3.3 Performance Discussions

3.3.1 The EPCS emphasizes ongoing communication and constructive feedback about performance between the rating official and the employee throughout the appraisal period. Each has a responsibility to keep the other informed. Such feedback may be provided by a rating official in informal or formal day-to-day communication with an employee, individually, or as a member of a team; and by an employee through informal communication, verbally or via e-mail, and/or written status reports on the employee's assigned programs and projects.

3.3.2 Formal performance discussions are:

a. Held to communicate performance expectations, provide relevant feedback, and (in connection with the mid-point progress review and the annual appraisal) identify training and development needs.

b. Held with employees at least three times during the appraisal period to:

(1) Establish the performance plan at the beginning of the appraisal period.

(2) Conduct a mid-point progress review.

(3) Issue the performance rating at the end of the appraisal period.

3.3.3 Performance plans should guide discussions about performance expectations and progress.

3.4 Documenting Completion of Appraisal Activities

3.4.1 A rating official's signature documents that a performance plan, progress review, or rating of record has been issued to and discussed with the employee and is, therefore, final.

3.4.2 If an employee is unable to or refuses/fails to sign a performance plan, progress review or rating of record, the rating official should consult with HR. An employee's signature on the rating of record only acknowledges receipt of the rating, it does not imply agreement with the rating. If an employee refuses to sign the rating, it does not preclude it from being a final rating. In such instances, the rating of record will indicate the employee's refusal to sign and the date that the rating was given to the employee.

| TOC | ChangeHistory | Preface | Chapter1 | Chapter2 | Chapter3 | Chapter4 | Chapter5 | Chapter6 | AppendixA | AppendixB | ALL |
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