There are many benefits to 360 feedback. However, a lot of 360 projects can go wrong, which results in poor ROI and can give a bad impression of 360 Feedback. It is unfortunate some perceive 360s in a bad light because 360s were created to generate positive change within an organization.

When conducted properly, a successful 360 process has proven itself valuable to many organizations by providing insight into where people can benefit from development and growth.

To help dispel any confusion about 360s, we have decided to highlight the best practices for 360 Feedback.


The company implementing a 360 needs to ensure that its employees understand exactly what the 360 process entails, what is expected of them, and how it will benefit them. That way everyone can truly prepare for the process and not be blindsided by a survey invitation. 

The company needs to explain that the 360 feedback process provides leaders with a way to solicit feedback from peers, colleagues, direct reports, and their own leader. The feedback can be used as a starting point for action planning, or to plan training and set development goals.

Role of the Participant

The participant is the person evaluated in the 360 process. Typically, the participant identifies the stakeholders that work directly with them, and is encouraged to invite as many as possible to maintain anonymity in the process.

Role of the Raters

Raters are key to the success of a 360 project because they see the leaders in action day-to-day, and as a result they provide the most useful and reliable feedback. The raters can include the participant’s manager, peers, direct reports, and even external stakeholders such as customers, suppliers and board members.

Anonymity and confidentiality

Anonymity and confidentiality is a vital component of the 360 process. The company needs to inform the employees that the 360 project is implemented by a third-party partner that provides systematic methods for maintaining anonymity of raters and confidentiality of survey results. In other words, no matter how the rater answers the questions, it will not threaten their job.

In addition

The rest of our document explains steps for maintaining anonymity and confidentiality, the common competencies measured in 360 surveys, development planning, and more. View our entire Best Practices for 360 Feedback document.