What is a performance review? And how can it help your people?

A performance review is an in-depth process of assessing the people in an organization on a regular basis to help them grow and be more productive.

Performance reviews are critical to helping meet individual and company-wide goals and giving people the information they need to thrive in their roles.

Finally, performance reviews can be a lot of work. As one of the most important tasks on HR’s plate, performance review time is often busy and stressful. But the good news is that modern HR tech can lighten the load. Today, we have access to tools specifically designed to automate and optimize the process, like employee performance review software, an employee performance review checklist, and employee performance review email templates.

<<Boost your performance reviews with our free performance review survey template.>>

How can you use the templates?

It is crucial to provide support and reassurance to your employees as they prepare for their upcoming performance reviews.

To make communications about performance reviews easier for you and your people, we’ve included several different email templates for performance reviews that you can use for various parts of the process. Adjust them as necessary to make them relevant to your organization and its procedures. What’s important here is that you maintain a constant flow of clear communication so that all parties involved are in the know throughout the entire performance review process.

Employee performance review email templates

Email template #1: Notify people about their performance review

Who it’s for: Team members with performance reviews coming up soon.

Why it’s essential: An effective performance review requires managers and team members to prepare. This annual review email template gives everybody the notice they need to get ready and feel prepared.

When to use it: Send this out at least two to four weeks ahead of time to give people adequate preparation time.

Subject: Performance reviews are coming up!


Hi all,

It’s that exciting time of year again: performance reviews! This is your yearly opportunity to have important conversations with your managers, review how things have been going, and set goals for the future.

Performance reviews this year will take place during the week of [date]. Please take the initiative to schedule the exact date and time of your meeting with your manager.

Ahead of your meeting, please fill out the attached self-evaluation form. During the performance review, you’ll have an opportunity to review the form and ask your managers any questions. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to speak to your manager or to reach out to HR.



Email template #2: Performance review notification to managers

Who it’s for: Managers who are preparing for an upcoming performance review process.

Why it’s essential: Managers need key information to conduct successful performance reviews.

When to use it: Send this performance review email template out to managers two to four weeks before you make the company-wide announcement informing people about their upcoming performance reviews.

Subject: Managers: How to prep for performance reviews


Hi team,

Performance reviews are coming up during the week of [date], and you’re a key part of making them effective and successful. 

Reach out to your direct reports to you to schedule their performance review meeting. If they haven’t confirmed they’ll attend the meeting with you by [date], please speak to them to make sure they do. 

Before your meetings, please ensure each team member fills out the attached employee evaluation sheet. 

During the performance review, allow each direct report to lead the conversation by discussing their self-evaluation. From there, you’re invited to add your feedback and answer their questions.

If you need any guidance or have any questions, feel free to reach out to HR.

Thank you for your help!


<<Boost your performance reviews with our free performance review survey template.>>

Email template #3: Tips for performance reviews

Who it’s for: People with performance reviews coming up.

Why it’s essential: Performance reviews can be stressful. This email helps ease people’s anxiety by giving them tips for succeeding in their performance reviews.

When to use it: Send this out one to two weeks before performance reviews.

Subject: Tips for acing your performance review


Hi there,

With performance reviews coming up during the week of [date], we wanted to share some tips to help you get the most out of this process.

  • Think back on the previous year and note any accomplishments or achievements you’re proud of.
  • When you can, try to be as specific as possible. Use numbers and figures to back up your statements.
  • Think of your personal career development goals and how they may align with [Company Name]’s goals and values.
  • Prepare any questions you might have for your manager.
  • Be ready to lead the conversation. This is your performance review, after all!

We’ve attached the self-evaluation form for you to complete and bring to your performance review. 

If you haven’t received an invitation to your performance review from your manager, please reach out to them as soon as possible to schedule a meeting.

If you have any questions, you’re invited to reach out directly to HR or your manager.

Good luck!


Email template #4: Performance review reminder

Who it’s for: Everyone involved in performance reviews.

Why it’s essential: This email serves as a reminder for managers and team members to prepare for their performance reviews.

When to use it: Send this out at least one week before performance reviews.

Subject: Don’t forget: Performance reviews next week!



This is your friendly reminder that performance review week is coming up next week! By now, you should have a meeting scheduled with your manager for your performance review. If you don’t, please reach out immediately to your manager to schedule your performance review meeting.

I’ve reattached the self-evaluation form to this email: Please remember to fill it out and bring it to your performance review meeting. 

Don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns.

Best regards,


<<Boost your performance reviews with our free performance review survey template.>>

Email template #5: Self-evaluation email sample

Who it’s for: Team members with upcoming performance reviews.

Why it’s essential: A self-evaluation form can help people prepare for a constructive and positive discussion with their managers.

When to use it: At least two weeks before performance reviews.

Subject: Performance review: Here’s your self-evaluation form


Hi [First name], 

With your performance review coming up, it’s time to reflect on your achievements, challenges, and areas of growth over the past year.

Your self-evaluation is an important part of the performance review process, and your insights are incredibly valuable. Your self-evaluation helps your manager better guide you toward your goals. Feel free to be honest and open in your self-assessment.

Fill out the form and bring it along to your performance review meeting.

Don’t hesitate to reach out to your manager if you have any questions.



Email template #6: Performance review process changes

Who it’s for: Everyone involved in performance reviews.

Why it’s essential: Sharing changes in the performance review process prepares team members for the upcoming transition.

When to use it: When you’re about to implement changes to the performance review process.

Subject: Important update: Changes to our performance review process


Hi [First name],

I wanted to let you know about some upcoming changes to our performance review process. 

We’ve been working on enhancing the current system to improve the overall performance evaluation experience and ensure feedback is more constructive and actionable. 

I believe these adjustments will help us further excel in our roles and contribute more effectively to the company’s success. Some of the changes include:

  • [Detail 1]
  • [Detail 2]
  • [Detail 3]

Please feel free to reach out if you have questions about any aspect of the upcoming changes.

Best regards, 


Email template #7: Follow-up after the performance review

Who it’s for: Managers and/or HR to send to team members after their performance review.

Why it’s essential: It reinforces feedback, provides clarity on expectations, and shows support for people’s growth and development.

When to use it: Send this email within a week after the performance review meeting.

Subject: Your recent performance review


Hi [First Name],

I hope you’re doing well.

I just wanted to touch base after our recent performance review discussion—thank you again for taking the time to do it. 

I was particularly impressed with [Achievement 1] and [Achievement 2].

We talked about how you could improve [Feedback]. I just wanted to let you know I’m here to support you with that and help you grow in your role. 

Let’s continue working together toward your professional goals.

I appreciate all your hard work, dedication, and progress. Keep it up!

Best regards, 


Best practices for communicating performance reviews to team members

When it comes to sharing performance feedback with your team, the way you phrase your messages can make a significant impact. 

Here are some useful tips to keep in mind:

  1. Clarity and specificity. Ensure your feedback is precise and provide concrete examples to help team members better understand your points. It’s also helpful to give people the opportunity to ask questions so they’re clear on feedback. 
  2. A focus on growth opportunities. The performance review is a chance to highlight areas where team members excel and offer constructive suggestions for improvement. Keeping the focus on long-term growth rather than criticism will provide greater motivation for people in their roles.
  3. Two-way communication. Encourage open dialogue to help team members feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and concerns. Acknowledge their perspectives and address any questions they may have to foster a culture of trust and transparency.
  4. Follow up with support. After delivering a performance review, offer guidance on how team members can work on their goals and provide resources or training opportunities to help them succeed. Showing your commitment to their development can boost morale and productivity.

By following these best practices, you can enhance the effectiveness of your performance review process and contribute to a positive and supportive work environment for your team.

Fill in the blanks

Use the above performance review email samples and your employee performance review software to boost your organization’s smooth and productive performance review process. Happy emailing!

Tali Sachs

From Tali Sachs

Tali is a content marketing manager at HiBob. She's been writing stories since before she knew what to do with a pen and paper. When she's not writing, she's reading sci-fi, snuggling with her cats, or singing at an open mic.