Putting these off definitely makes things worse

Performance reviews are one of those tasks that managers and organizations struggle with. Even companies that have well-developed performance review and development processes have difficulty getting managers to complete them on time and in good faith. Sluggish performance in human resource management is a leading indicator of current or near at hand organizational troubles.

It all starts at the top. The leader of the organization must make personnel selection and appraisal of job performance a central personal task. Timeliness at this level will trickle down quite quickly.

One simple method of demonstrating a commitment to timely performance reviews is to tie each manager’s own performance appraisal and all pay changes and other pay-for-performance compensation to the timeliness of performance reviews for their subordinates. If they are late with subordinates’ reviews, then their review and potential compensation changes will be delayed by the cumulative tardiness. Include the CEO and COB in this policy.

Organizations with a real commitment to great personnel make this work.