The PDR FAQs below are split into five sections. The first section covers general queries colleagues might have about PDRs. The other four sections focus on the PDR system within iTrent, in addition to the system user guides and videos on the main PDR webpage.
General PDR FAQs
Performance and Development Review– sometimes known in other organisations as colleague appraisals or annual reviews.
A PDR is the University’s way of capturing and reviewing performance objectives and development goals. PDR’s benefit us by:
- Directly linking colleagues’ performance with the team’s, school’s or service’s objectives.
- Giving colleagues the space to consider their overall wellbeing and how their manager might support them moving forwards
- Giving colleagues a clear purpose for the year ahead, with related goals which can be regularly reviewed.
- Giving managers an opportunity to provide positive feedback and recognise achievements.
- Identifying development needs and discuss career development.
The PDR cycle runs from 1 July – 31 January. The term PDR cycle is the ‘window of time’ during which PDR discussions take place at the University. The discussions cycle usually starts at the most senior level of the University and then cascades to Deans, Directors, managers and teams.
- A focus on the individual and their wellbeing.
- A review of the previous 12 months’ objectives and achievements.
- Setting objectives and identifying development goals for the next 6-12 months.
The most effective PDRs are person-centred rather than process driven. They are an opportunity for an in-depth conversation between the Reviewee and Reviewer (usually, a colleague and their line manager). PDRs are most valuable when they are connected to regular 1:1s and less formal discussions throughout the year, to regularly review progress towards objectives for example.
From July 2021 we now support colleagues to record their PDR outcomes in a simple way within iTrent. This includes the ability to set, share and update progress on your objectives throughout the year.
This conversations map shows you how and when to best utilise iTrent alongside your PDR discussions.
Using the iTrent system to document your PDR discussions has many benefits including:
- Providing a structured record of discussion for workplace planning, feedback, achievements and development needs.
- Providing a secure, user-friendly system holding all the information in one place. Enabling self-service, with simple access to objectives for managers and employees.
- Tracking progress against objectives throughout the year.
- This conversations map shows you how and when to use iTrent alongside your PDR discussions.
This year we have developed a small range of PDR resources for colleagues engaged in research, available on our PDR webpage. If you are a research-active colleague and would like to contribute to this work or use resources in your area that could be shared more widely, please contact POD@leedsbeckett.ac.uk
Most of your discussions around objectives, feedback and development needs will be covered in your induction and probationary period reviews. However, a shorter PDR conversation to check in on wellbeing, discuss your area’s plans and the team’s priorities is good practice, to give you sight of the future opportunities available to you. There’s also the option to use the online system to track probationary period work and development objectives (see below for more details on how to do this).
Reviewee FAQs - Objectives
No, you will need to record your objectives each year. They can be updated at any point throughout the year.
Yes, your manager can access your objectives via Manager Self-Service, including any progress details and supporting documents that you have uploaded. They can also create and update your objectives, including progress details, if appropriate.
No, only your manager has access to your details via iTrent. You will need to share your objectives with your reviewer outside of iTrent. You can download them and print or save to pdf to help with this.
Yes, you can mark your objectives as complete by entering a completion date in the objective details screen. We recommend that objectives are not completed until after the annual PDR discussion. Once a completion date is entered, the objective no longer displays by default, so you will need to search for “all” objectives in order to retrieve any that have been completed.
Yes, you can search for “all” objectives to retrieve any that have been completed. To un-complete, simply remove the completion date and save this change.
If the existing objectives are relevant/linked to your new position, you can continue to update them. If they are no longer relevant, and you have different objectives for your new position, we recommend that you add a progress update to record your old objectives as no longer relevant to your new position, that you mark the “old” objectives as “cancelled” and also add a completion date to exclude them from your default view in Self-Service.
Yes, you can link your objectives to a specific position when you set them up in iTrent. The “position” field in the objective details screen has a drop-down option. This defaults to “all” positions, but you can change to your objectives to the relevant position.
Reviewer FAQs - Objectives
No, only managers have access to colleagues’ details via iTrent. Your reviewees will need to share their objectives with you outside of iTrent. They can download them from iTrent and print or save to pdf to help with this.
Yes, you can credit and update objectives, including progress details, at any point throughout the year. You might wish to discuss any changes with your colleagues first.
We recommend that objectives are not deleted from iTrent. The status can instead be amended to “cancelled” or “deferred” as appropriate.
Yes, you can run a report of objectives for individual colleagues or your team as a whole. These can be downloaded and printed or saved to pdf.
Yes, objectives can be recorded as complete by entering a completion date in the objective details screen. We recommend that objectives are not completed until after the annual PDR discussion. Once a completion date is entered, the objective no longer display in the objective summary screen. You can access any completed objectives via the separate objective details link, changing the display criteria from “current” to “completed”.
Yes, objectives can be un-completed by removing the completion date from the objective details screen and saving this change. When objectives are marked as complete, they no longer display in the objective summary screen. You can access any completed objectives via the separate objective details link, changing the display criteria from “current” to “completed”.
If objectives have been marked as complete, by entering a completion date, they no longer display in the objective summary screen. You can access any completed objectives via the separate objective details link, changing the display criteria from “current” to “completed”.
Yes, you will be able to view any existing objectives with effect from the date you become the manager.
You will not be able to access objectives, with effect from the date you are no longer the manager.
No, the system doesn’t send notifications when objectives are created or updated.
Reviewee FAQs - PDR Lifecycle
The first stage is for you to generate the lifecycle and record the PDR discussion date. After the discussion, your manager can document their summary comments. The final stage is for you to document your own summary comments. We recommend that you record the date after the discussion takes place. Once you save and submit this and other sections of the form, it is not possible to make any amendments. Once all sections of the form have been submitted, the process is complete in iTrent.
No, only your manager has access to your details via iTrent. You can use the system to generate the lifecycle and record the discussion date. There is a Word template you can use to record the reviewer and reviewee summary comments and you can upload this to your review form, in iTrent, if you wish.
Unfortunately, it isn’t possible to un-complete sections of the form, or the form itself, once they have been submitted. For this reason, reviewees and managers may wish to share and confirm their comments outside of iTrent, before submitting them.
Reviewer FAQs - PDR Lifecycle
No, only the manager has access to colleagues’ details via iTrent. The reviewee can use the system to generate the lifecycle and record the discussion date. There is a Word template you can use to document reviewer and reviewee summary comments and the reviewee can upload this to their review form, in iTrent, if they wish.