Create and manage performance ratings formulas

This article walks through what a performance ratings formula is and how to create and manage performance ratings formulas in 15Five. You create a performance ratings formula for a review cycle after creating the question template and before creating a rubric.

You can edit which performance ratings formula is being used in an active review cycle up until the first review in the cycle is submitted. Once that happens, it is not possible to change the performance ratings formula.

In this article you will learn:

Also included are:

What are performance ratings formulas?

Performance ratings formulas are, well, the formulas used to determine a person's performance rating! In a formula you determine how much weight answers given in a person's self review vs. manager review will have on their performance rating, which question sections will be included in a person's performance rating (and how much weight those sections will have), and which opinion-scale questions in a question template will be considered in the calculation of their performance rating.

Before you can create a performance ratings formula, you first need to create a question template to which the ratings formula will be applied.

There is no limit to the number of performance ratings formulas that can exist within an account. However, there can only be one performance ratings formula associated with a specific review cycle.

Create a performance ratings formula

1. Click on Best-Self Review® in 15Five's main, left-hand navigation bar.
2. At the top of the page under "Best-Self Review®", click to open the 'Template configuration' tab.

3. You are now on the 'Template configuration' page, which houses question templates, performance ratings formulas, and rubric formulas. Scroll down to the 'Performance ratings formulas' section and click the Add weight to a template button.
4. 'Name & Description' section: Provide a name and description for your ratings formula. The name and description you provide will only be visible to review admins, and can be edited later on if desired. Then, click Continue.

5. 'Question template' section: Select the question template you want your performance ratings formula to apply to. In the dropdown menu, you will only see options of self/manager question templates that exist in your company's account. Click Continue.
6. ‘Add values' section: This is the section in which you set how heavily answers to different sections of a review will be weighted in folks’ performance ratings.

In Step 1, select how much self and manager reviews, respectively, will be weighed in review cycle participants' performance rating score. Peer and upward reviews cannot be considered in performance ratings.

In Step 2, designate which sections from the question template will be considered in review cycle participants' performance rating score, and what percentage each of those individual sections will be weighed in the score. This section is pre-populated with the sections in the question template that you selected in step #5.



If the question template you’re creating a performance ratings formula for does not include any opinion scale questions in a question section, the option to include that section will be turned “off” and grayed out.

If you click the “+” next to a section title, all opinion-scale questions that were asked to all participants will appear. Keep the box next to the question checked if you want answers to that question to be considered in performance ratings, or deselect the box if you don’t want answers to that question to be considered in performance ratings.



Deselecting a question from being considered in performance ratings only means that answers to that question will not be considered/included in performance rating calculations for review cycle participants and does not have an impact on whether or not the question will be asked in the review cycle. If you’d like to remove a question from a review cycle, you will need to edit the question template prior to kicking off your review cycle.

When you’re done, click Continue.
7. ‘Summary’ tab: Confirm details for your performance ratings formula, then click Create.

What's next?

Now that you’ve created your performance ratings formula, it’s time to create a rubric. Whereas performance ratings formulas determine how review participants’ overall performance ratings will be calculated, rubrics explain what that score means. Check out our “Create and manage rubrics” Help Center article for next steps.

Manage performance ratings formulas

Created formulas will appear in the 'Performance ratings formulas' section of the ‘Template configuration’ page in a table that contains the following information:

  • Performance ratings formula name
  • Description
  • Question template utilized
  • Status
  • Three dot menu gives option to edit, view, or delete (if not in-use)


To manage a performance ratings formula, click ... to its right. On the dropdown menu you’ll see options to view, edit, or delete the formula. You can only edit or delete a formula that is not currently in-use.

Edit which formula is being used in an active review cycle

If you made a mistake in a performance ratings formula and have already launched the review cycle, you can create a new performance ratings formula and apply it to the cycle up until the first review in the cycle is submitted. Once that happens, it is not possible to change the performance ratings formula.

Once these changes are made, ratings recalculations will be triggered automatically in the system. It might take a couple minutes (depending on cycle size) for recalculated ratings to appear in various places.

To edit which performance ratings formula is being used in a cycle, edit review settings for the active cycle. You'll see a 'Performance Ratings+' section in which you can choose a new rubric.



  • Who can see performance ratings formula names and descriptions? Only review admins. A cycle's performance ratings template name will appear in lists for creating a review cycle or editing an active review cycle, and the description only appears on the 'Template Configuration' page.
  • Can review cycle participants see their performance rating? This depends on review settings selected for your company. In global Best-Self Review settings, admins can select whether or not participants will be able to see their performance ratings when review results are shared with them. For more information, check out our “Manage company review settings” Help Center article.
  • Which question types are included in the Performance Ratings+ calculation? Only opinion-scale questions are included.
  • If you ask a question to just the self or just the manager, is it still included in the ratings template/calculation? Yes, it can be included in the ratings calculation.
  • What happens to a person’s performance rating if I reopen a review for editing? Performance ratings get automatically re-calculated when included review answers are edited/revised.
  • ​​Can I weigh a question in the section heavier than other questions in that same section? No. You can remove some questions within the section from being included in the calculation, but you cannot weigh one question in the section more than another question in the same section; all questions included from within the same question section will be weighed equally. However, different question sections can be weighed differently.
  • Is there a limit to how many performance ratings formulas I can create? No, but only one performance ratings formula can be applied to any given review cycle.
  • Can I use more than one performance ratings formula in a single review cycle? No— with the initial Performance Ratings+ release you can only have one performance measurement formula in a cycle. Because of this, if you want to measure performance differently between different teams in your organization, you should create separate review cycles for them and apply different performance ratings to those review cycles. All this said, we do plan to release the ability to apply different performance ratings to different groups in a single review cycle in the future.
  • Can I factor group-specific questions and/or competencies into a person’s performance rating? No— only company-wide questions and competencies are pulled into performance ratings formulas.
  • Can an admin add a performance ratings formula to/remove a performance ratings formula from an already active cycle? Yes, a review admin can edit the active cycle and add a performance ratings formula (and rubric) to an active cycle. This must be done before the first review is submitted.
  • Can I change which formula is applied to the review cycle during an active review cycle? Yes, but only before any reviews are submitted.
  • Can I edit an in-use performance ratings formula? Yes, but before the first review is submitted. Once it is used in a cycle that has reviews shared, you will not be able to edit the values in the template.
  • Can I change which question template a performance ratings formula is built off of? No. Once a performance ratings formula is created, it’s not possible to change which question template it is associated with. You will need to create a new performance ratings formula off the correct question template.
  • How are performance ratings calculated? Performance ratings are calculated using the formula below:
    Note: When normalizing the opinion scales, we calculated them using the following:
    𝑧𝑖 = (𝑥𝑖−min(𝑥)) / (max(𝑥)−min(𝑥))
    So if you had 5 scales for the opinion scale question, and someone answered a 3, it would be (3-1)/(5-1) = 0.5. We do this because otherwise all of the normalized scores would be skewed more positively.

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