Under both systems, your performance will be evaluated at the end of the appraisal cycle (October 1 – September 30) by your supervisor against the elements and standards in your performance plan. At this juncture, there are differences in the evaluation process for the 5-Level and the Commerce Alternative Personnel System (CAPS).
Under the 5-Level system, you will receive an overall rating (known as a “Summary Rating”) of Level 5, 4, 3, 2, or 1 based on your performance of each element. Level 5 is the highest rating and Level 1 is equivalent to an unacceptable rating. The summary rating is the basis for rewarding, reassigning, and removing an employee. More information about program is available in Chapter 9 of the Performance Management Handbook.
CAPS uses a two-level rating system, with Unsatisfactory and Eligible ratings. The most important feature of the system is that it is based on a 100-point scoring system linked to pay for performance. You are then ranked by performance score within pay pools, and Eligible employees may receive performance pay increases linked to their rankings. Highly ranked employees within a pay pool receive relatively high pay increases, and lower ranked employees receive relatively lower pay increases. More information about this program is available on page 73 of the Commerce Alternative Personnel System Operating Procedures Manual.