Planning, Development & Review (PDR)

Planning, Development and Review provides a framework for staff to set performance objectives which are meaningful in their current role, contribute to career goals, and align to the University's strategic direction. PDR should also encompass development planning that will assist in achieving these objectives, and allow for a review of performance outcomes between staff and people leaders.

All staff members on continuing or fixed term contracts of greater than 12 months are expected to participate in PDR. There should be three PDR meetings each year which are documented after each meeting. The focus of PDR is on engagement in honest and open conversations.

  • PDR cycle

    PDR Stages Conversation Outline Staff Services Online (SSO) Confirmation Deadline
    For academic staff, the IAP is used to support PDR conversations and is available in February
    Final Review for 2020
    • Review achievement of work & development objectives against measures
    • Two-way feedback
    • Complete PDR Conversation Record


    5 February 2021

    (when not combined with objective setting)

    Objective Setting
    • Establish and agree SMART work objectives
    • Agree development objectives
    • Two-way feedback
    • Complete PDR Conversation Record


    9 April 2021

    For academic staff, the IAP is used to support PDR conversations and is available in July
    Mid Term Review
    • Review progress against work and development objectives
    • Identify any blockages/issues
    • Two-way feedback
    • Supervisor provides coaching and guidance
    • Complete PDR Conversation Record


    13 August 2021*



    *SSO confirmation optional

    Final Review for 2021
    • Review achievement of work and development objectives against measures
    • Two-way feedback
    • Complete PDR Conversation Record


    4 February 2022 for current year

    Parts of the University undertake operational and business planning at different times of the year. If it is necessary for individual PDR planning to take place at an alternative time, please consult with your Executive Dean/Director.

    To ensure enough time for reviewing and confirming the Conversation Records form, it is recommended that formal PDR conversations take place two weeks prior to the final Staff Services Online (SSO) confirmation deadline (refer table).

    It is an option to use the final review meeting to also set objectives for the next year, however it must be recorded in Staff Services Online (SSO) as 2 separate meetings, an Objective Setting meeting and a Final Review meeting.

  • Recording PDR

    PDR Form

    Use the relevant PDR Conversation Record to document your PDR conversations:

    • PDR Conversation Record – Academic Staff (Word /Pdf )
    • PDR Conversation Record – Professional Staff (Word /Pdf )

    Guide to the PDR Conversation Record

    This guide will assist you in completing to Conversation Record:

    Using SSO to record your participation in PDR

    Confirm your completion of PDR through Staff Services Online as per the timeline above.

  • Support resources

     Objective Setting Resources
    Mid-Year and Final Review Resources 

    For Staff

    For People Leaders

    These support resources have been designed and developed by Veronica Lee of HRM Matters and Human Capital International (as indicated). Numerous sources were utilised in the research and development. The intellectual property of authors has been respected by fully researching and referencing the original source where it has been available. There materials are provided solely for the use of employees while employed by the University of Adelaide and have been provided with the permission of HRM Matters and HCI.


    Academic Staff

    Both the Adelaide Academic Role Statements and Individual Academic Profiles (IAPs) are used as inputs to PDR. The following diagram shows how they fit with PDR (or view the pdf):


  • Training

    Learning and Development offers online PDR training modules for staff and supervisors throughout the year that covers: 

    • Three online modules that cover the benefits of PDR, PDR in Practice and Preparing for Objective Setting

    For further information about access to the online modules please visit: PDR Learning Program


  • Policy and Procedure

    PDR Forms, Templates, Information Sheets, Policies and Procedures can be found in the Staff Planning, Development & Review (PDR) Handbook Chapter.