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PDR for Professional Staff

The Performance & Development Review (PDR) process is used to review job performance and set goals for future training and development. Taking place every year, the PDR gives professional staff opportunities to develop themselves and their careers.

The 2018/2019 PDR process has been adapted to accommodate the organisational changes currently underway. The flexibility recognises the changes in reporting lines and in roles that have, are, and will occur.

Please note: We will not be using the PDR app for the 2018 process.  Please refer to PDR for manager/reviews for further information.

When and who?

The formal PDR involves a discussion between a manager and their staff member. In 2018 the manager who is in the best position to undertake the review and assess performance will take the lead. They will as appropriate consult others who may have been involved during the period of the review.

The overall principles and practices outlined in the Professional Staff Performance and Development Review policy (PDR) still applies. To help manage the transition, the PDR process will be divided into two distinct parts:

1.       Review of performance for 2017/18 


2.       Objective setting for the 2018/19 period

The when and who will depend on the situation of each staff member. For staff who have changed roles (e.g. moved into Shared Services), then the review and objective setting may be undertaken by different managers.

Please refer to the PDR Guide for more detailed information:

Download the PDR Guide

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What happens in the PDR meeting?

The first part of the discussion should focus on reflecting on the previous year. The manager and staff member should consider the goals that were set in the previous PDR, as well as the responsibilities in the job description.

Staff are encouraged to prepare for their PDR reviews before the meeting to make the most of the process. To prepare, staff should consider:

o What was expected over the last year (read the PDR form, notes from meetings and the job description)
o Think about your performance over the last year, gather information and evidence about what you have achieved
o Think about what you would like to achieve over the next year

Download the Preparing for your PDR form

Objective setting/Development

The second part of the discussion should focus on planning and development for the coming year. For staff who have or who have changed roles (e.g. moved into Shared Services positions), the new manager will be responsible for this part. However, it is expected that they consider the review outcomes and if appropriate discuss them with the manager who undertook the review.

The manager and staff member will consider what can be achieved in the coming year and identify what resources or staff development may be necessary to achieve such goals. Depending on your individual circumstances, the objective-setting portion of your PDR may be undertaken by your new manager (if you have changed roles).

There are a wealth of development resources relating to the Ngā Taonga Tuku Iho / Language and Culture competency.
Find out more about Ngā Taonga Tuku Iho / Language and Culture development resources

The ongoing changes resulting from the implementation of Shared Services could have an impact on the setting of the objectives for the following 12-months so this part may be delayed depending on the timing of staff appointments to their new positions.

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Salary review decisions

Department Heads will conduct salary reviews during the PDR. The outcome of these reviews will be on the PDR form.


Staff in the appointment range will either be:

o Approved for a salary increase; or

o Not awarded an increase should they be assessed as Requires Improvement 

Staff in the merit range will either be:

o    Approved a salary increase should they be assessed as Exceeds Expectations or Outstanding; or

o    Not awarded an increase


Salary increases take effect on the 1 February the following year.  Staff who have been approved to receive an increase will receive a letter confirming their increase.


If a salary increase was not recommended, the staff member will not receive a letter as this will be documented on the PDR form.

Refer to the PDR policy section on Salary Reviews
Download the guidelines for acknowledging & rewarding staff
Find out more information about employee benefits at Otago

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Progress reviews throughout 2018/19

You should have regular progress reviews with your manager throughout the year. This should be an extension of the regular discussions you have about how your work is going and the impact of training and development on your work.


By having these conversations all year, you improve your working relationship with your manager and reduce preparation time before the formal PDR review. You can use the final page of the PDR form to make notes in these sessions

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Management Band PDR

The Management Band PDR is similar to the Professional Staff PDR in that the overall process is the same. Additional things to consider for the Management Band PDR are:
o A higher level of performance is expected from staff on Management Band
o Divisional Heads have been given delegated authority by the Vice Chancellor to award salary increases of up to $2000. Any salary increases above this must be approved by the Vice Chancellor.

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Who to contact

If you have questions about the PDR or want to talk about it with an independent person, there are a number of people you can contact.

Divisional HR Managers

The Divisional HR Managers are your first port of call of HR enquiries.

Find the contact information for your DHRM

Other useful contacts:

HR Professional 479 4101
Jennifer Anderson, University 479 5679
Shaun Scott, Tertiary Education Union (TEU) 479 5492
Keith McFadyen, Public Service Association (Organiser) 474 7400

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