The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of performance appraisal system at private universities in Nigeria. The focus of the study was on the administrative staff of Crawford University. The study evaluated the purpose of performance appraisal in private universities and identifies relevant factors for achieving an effective performance appraisal. A cross- sectional survey was selected for this study because it was easy to undertake compared to longitudinal survey and the results from the same can be inferred to the larger population. The study population was for all the administrative staff of Crawford University. The whole populations of staff were selected as respondents. A structured questionnaire was used to collect the data for analysis. The analysis of collected data was done by the help of SPSS and presented using descriptive statistics, frequency tables and percentages. The findings from the study have established that performance appraisal system is the only tangible metric way by which an organization can know the level of performance of its diverse members of staff. The effectiveness of performance appraisal systems in private universities are only based on training the members of staff involved in the rating/ appraising process and are multi- rating systems. Conclusively because the performance appraisal systems used in private universities are not effective and that they exist just as a matter of formalities, the private universities cannot measure members of staff performance, hence making it difficult to achieve the intended human resource management objective.
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