Supervision is needed to watch progress of work to guard against possible results failure. Information about system performance is essential to permit timely decisions that emanate as supervision measures. The most important purpose of supervision is to make sure that actual operation conforms to establish standard. If a typist is expected to produce fifteen typed pages a day, it has to be seen that the typist actually achieves the target. A secondary purpose of supervision is to provide timely information about actual work performance so that corrective action could be taken in case of any difficulties reported in course of performance.
Three basic elements of supervision process are the following:
Setting of Standards: What results have been planned should be, as far as possible, explicitly stated and made known to all the organizational participants. A village level worker in-charge of a number of villages must know in how many fields lie has to organize demonstrations in what time period. He should be told clearly how many farmers he should contact and advise in one month. Performance appraisal becomes easier when expected result is clearly stated.
Comparison of actual performance against standards: As the work would be in progress, the result actually achieved should be ascertained for seeing whether actual performance is falling short of planned results or not. This method of supervision is known as “monitoring” which stands for mid-course supervision. When an activity has run its full course and reached the stage of completion, the comparison of final result actually achieved against the planned result is generally know as “evaluation”. Both monitoring and evaluation do, however, involve comparison of actual performance against present standards.
Taking of Corrective Action: Information of feedback about actual system performance acts as signals for corrective action. Decisions are called for on the basis of performance reports, to ensure that appropriate action is taken to remedy the defects and correct mistakes. By taking appropriate action, the management make sure that actual performance conforms to the planned standards and produces desired results.