Impact Scoring

As every fast growing company we faced the problem of unbiased performance and rewarding mechanisms.


We stumbled upon Deeson's model, which in turn is claimed to be borrowed from Stack Overflow in the first place so credits go to those two exemplary companies for shaping the model. Thank you guys!

Impact scoring

We evaluate each other based on the desired impact we should get during our daily work. To this extent each role's duties in Sparkfabrik is detailed based on the expected outcomes, not a series of tasks or procedures that people must follow blindly.

These outcomes is seen as important to business, context and company culture by company governance.

Impact assessment

In one-to-one meetings at the start of every quarter (Jan, April, July, Oct), we evaluate a developers against the outcomes listed in their impact scoring cards on the same scale from A (and above) to C used by Deeson.

Each outcome or skill gets one of the following rates:

  • A++: Over the top amazingness. You do, teach and lead. When people think of this skill, they think of you. Even in Sparkfabrik, where people are expected to excel, such a score will be rare. You can aim here but are not expected to, probably this reflects an aspect of your personality or a natural talent.
  • A+: You do more than your mates expect, even considering we have demandingly high standards.
  • A: You totally do what's expected, matching our high standards. Undeniably positive impact.
  • B: Good performance but with improvement headroom. When you have to set your quarterly or yearly professional goal, here is where to put your energy first.
  • C: This falls way behind our expectations and you need to improve significantly in this area. Such a score will inevitably set a goal for you for the next quarter, when this is expected to have become a B. Scoring the same C over and over is not acceptable.

An additional value is

  • X – Who is providing the score have no evidence or data to evaluate you on this aspect.

Total score calculation

The total score is calculated by the following formula:

(4 x A++ count + 3 x A+ count + 2 x A count + 1 x B count + 0 x C count + 0 x X count) / (Total aspects count)

The resulting score is and average awesomeness indicator you can keep track of. It is bound to grow and when it constantly stays over the Awesomeness horizon reported in your impact scoring card, you'll be eligible for a career advancement.

How assessment happens

This evaluation is not done by someone in a vacuum. You are required to attend the one-to-one with a complete score-card you will have filled with your lead (or senior mate). This means you will have to discuss your scoring, not getting it from above.

If you feel you got an unfair scoring from your lead, you can have a HR representative to review the evaluation with you and your lead in advance.

For the evaluated

Although other people may not always be objective in evaluating your impacts, it is important to sustain the conversation openly and get all the reasons behind each score. Even when it's difficult to take, honest feedback is the most valuable help you can get in your growth. Different people will see you in different lights and from different perspectives. This is also food for thought and will help you nurturing soft social skills, useful when you will become a team leader or a top manager.

For the evaluator

It may be difficult and uncomfortable to give honest feedback. You may be tempted to be too soft, too rewarding, shy away from harsh topics, etc. Or, quite the opposite you may be in rage for something really bad that recently happened and be tempted to bash your colleague with a bad evaluation, calling off months of good work and wiping the slate clean.
Having to explain your reasons should help you be more objective. Should the conversation become difficult, try to make her clear how she may succeed in the future instead that just pointing out how bad she failed. But don't sweep the dirt under the carpet. Remember that the reason you are providing feedback is to allow your mate to do a better job next time. Always trust she will!

Last updated on 15 Apr 2021