0115 648 0919
Careers Advice

What to expect in a probationary review

No matter how rigorous the interview process, employers have been known to make the wrong decision. It’s important to take stock after the initial probation period and double check that everything is working out for everybody involved. Most organisations do this with a review meeting at the end of the agreed probation.

If your end of probation review feels like a step into the unknown, here’s our helpful checklist to give you some practical tips.

The job description

It’s important to go over the job description before you have your meeting because you’ll get a clearer idea of what you might be asked during your end of probation review. If you can’t find it then HR should have a copy.

Establish the most frequently used phrases or points in the job description. Then, think about how you’ve used the most important skills and how your performance has lived up to the job description. It would be useful if you could think of some examples to highlight your progress in the role.

This little bit of preparation will not only give you plenty to discuss with your manager, but you’ll also have some idea of what will be discussed just from reading your job description. This will make you feel more confident if you have any nerves about your probation meeting.


It’s also a good idea to use your end of probation review to discuss what you’ve learned in the position. This is a great opportunity for you to demonstrate your strengths and show your manager that you are taking your role seriously.

Explain which training you’ve especially benefited from and why you found it so useful. You could also elaborate on how well you’ve picked up business processes, IT systems and company culture.

This section of the meeting is likely to be productive because you’ll be discussing the best way to train you and the types of information you retain most effectively. Also, by reviewing what you’ve learned, you’ll also validate your worth to the organisation and demonstrate a desire to stay and commit to the role.

Your expectations

It is advisable to use your end of probation review to discuss whether or not the job has met your expectations.

This is your opportunity to tell your manager about how similar or different the job is to how you imagined it would be. You could also briefly mention how the role meets your desired career path. When discussing this, you should be honest in saying anything you expected more or less of in the role. This will help you to discuss any misgivings you may have diplomatically. It will also give you some insight into how your manager feels everything is working out.

Appropriate feedback

You’ll get more out of your end of probation review if you can get some feedback to help you progress.

Ask your manager’s thoughts on how well you’ve picked up your duties and where there’s room for improvement. Also find out if they are satisfied with the speed at which you’re taking to the job. If your manager feels that there’s a part of your role that you aren’t as far ahead with as expected, then this would be a good time to set some realistic objectives for you. It’s important to remember that a good manager shouldn’t want you to fail!

Probation reviews can seem intimidating and even unnecessary, but they are a vital part of many businesses. They give a clear and structured framework for your new employer to assess your work, character and potential. As long as you are confident about what is expected of you and how to deliver, there is nothing to be worried about.

Share this
Share this