Behaviorally Anchored Rating Scales

What are Behaviorally Anchored Rating Scales?

Behaviorally anchored rating scales (BARS) are a type of performance evaluation tool that combines the benefits of qualitative and quantitative approaches to performance assessment. BARS are designed to measure specific behaviors or skills, rather than more general traits or characteristics.

BARS consists of a set of criteria or dimensions that are relevant to the job or task being evaluated, along with a series of behavioral examples or anchors that illustrate different levels of performance for each dimension. For example, a BARS used to evaluate customer service skills might include dimensions such as "communication" and "problem-solving," along with a series of behavioral anchors that illustrate increasing levels of proficiency in each dimension.

To use a BARS, an evaluator observes an individual's performance and rates the individual's behavior on each dimension using the provided anchors as a guide. This allows the evaluator to provide a more detailed and accurate assessment of the individual's performance, as the specific behaviors being evaluated are clearly defined.

BARS are often used in performance appraisal systems, as they can provide more objective and accurate feedback to employees about their performance and areas for improvement. They can also be used to identify training needs and development opportunities.

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