Bryq 9-box model

This article will familiarize you with the 9-box concept powered by Bryq and how you can use it in the application.

Manto Papagianni avatar
Written by Manto Papagianni
Updated over a week ago

What is a 9-box?

Known as both the “9-box model” and the “9-box grid”, this well-known talent management tool transforms the way companies think about talent. The 9-box places employees on a grid in order to see how they compare to one another. It separates them into nine general categories spread across two axises in rows of three. By being ranked on a visible grid, employers are able to see which employees are great in their current roles, and which employees might need to be further developed or let go.

9-box Benefits

Using a 9-box throughout your talent management process offers you a great number of benefits including:

- promoting and enhancing internal mobility throughout your organization

- helping you focus your learning and development initiatives

- identifying your best performers

- identifying which of your employees should seek out new careers (whether that is at your company or another company)

Far from one-dimensional, the 9-box is simple in theory but multifunctional in terms of its uses. From creating new career paths for underperforming employees to promoting talent higher up the career ladder, the 9-box model is able to help you make any talent management decision so much easier.

How Bryq does it

Bryq uses actual tangible performance data in combination with a “Bryq score” that is able to successfully predict performance. Typically, a 9-box is used in tandem with subjective performance data without numerical data.

By combining all of the data available to us using Bryq, we are able to show companies the potential for development and internal mobility for any given employee. If the Bryq 9-box shows that this employee doesn’t have the potential to improve, they may be dismissed. But sometimes talented employees are just bored or can be trained further to be great. Our 9-box model allows you to reclaim valuable talent that can be utilized in different ways - saving you time and money while promoting talent development and growth from within.

Access to 9-box

Under the new menu Talent Insights you will find the 9-box in the second tab, next to Role Optimization.

What you need to have already created in Bryq is:

  1. Profile (Optimized profile or use an existing assessment)

  2. Segment i.e. the employees that you would want to review in the 9-box

A typical exercise with 9-box is the selection of a specific profile i.e. sales representative and select a team i.e. sales team to view their potential combined with their actual work performance allowing to get actionable insights.

So, after selecting these two mandatory parameters the system automatically calculates and plots the data in the 9-box.

Each employee is depicted in the 9-box as a bubble with their initials on top. The system clusters employees and displays number of employees if their scores coincide. While hovering a clustered bubble a tooltip with the list of employee names appears.

While hovering a bubble with one employee then a detailed tooltip with information about the scores, performance etc. is shown.

Each box offers a generic description of what each box label means as per the example below. An info layer expands upon placing the cursor on the box label and disappears after removing the cursor. Finally, the number of entries per box is displayed at the right bottom corner of each box.

Moreover, you can zoom in every box by clicking on the expand icon on the top right corner of each box.

Similarly, you can zoom out the box by clicking on the reset zoom icon on the top right corner of each expanded box.

Another important feature is the ability to select a specific area to zoom in while the box is in full view i.e. expanded view. When navigating in the box area a cross cursor appears and you can drag to select a section you want to zoom in.

When navigating in the box area a cross cursor appears and you can drag to select a section you want to zoom in.

You can reset the zoom if you click on the top right icon of the box area. You may also note that the number of selected employees (at the bottom right) is updated depending on the number of users selected.

Last but not least, the 9-box offers a flexible navigation from one box to another when zoomed in. Simply, click on the grayed our axis tags High, Medium, Low and you will be respectively transferred to the next / previous box.


What do the labels mean




High Potential / Low Performance

Promising fit

These individuals are exceeding expectations along potential but failing along performance. While they reveal promising signs of great potential as they can be highly driven to deliver results, their lack of maturity, experience, competency in some specific areas or even their lack of organization skills may inhibit their ability to optimally perform in their designated role.

Medium Potential / Low Performance

Questionable fit

These individuals have some potential, yet they are not performing up to standards. While they may be trying hard, this is not reflected in their deliverables which may stem from a potential mismatch between their skills and their designated role or lack of the anticipated adaptation to the role.

Low Potential / Low Performance

Risky fit

These individuals reveal low potential and have poor performance. They may exhibit resistance to coaching and development activities. These employees would be considered to be suitable candidates for reassignment, reclassification, or exiting.

High Potential / Medium Performance

Rising Star

These individuals reveal high potential but have not yet achieved outstanding performance. They are effective in their current role, however they may need to stretch on their goals, assignments and responsibilities to reach their full potential and evolve.

Medium Potential / Medium Performance

Valued Talent

These individuals reveal moderate potential and performance. They may be considered for job enlargement but they will need to develop further several skills and competencies including people management. They are capable of growing which needs to be actualized gradually and with the appropriate assistance.

Low Potential / Medium Performance


These individuals reveal limited potential for future growth, still they are performing acceptably. They are steadily reliable and functional in their current job position and level of responsibility. They may have reached their career potential or they may need enhancement on their lateral thinking to step out of the traditional way that they tend to adhere to.

High Potential / High Performance

Game changer

These individuals have high potential to grow into a role with broader responsibility and complexity and they exceed performance. They are highly self-motivated and are performing well in a wide variety of settings. They are effective problem solvers, effective communicators and cooperate well with others, focusing on the big picture and can be seen as role models to others.

Medium Bryq / High Performance


These individuals have some potential however they provide consistent and high performance results. They are mainly operationally focused people who may still grow within their current role if they improve their tactical and strategic thinking abilities, eliminate potential limitations and reassess their goals.

Low Bryq / High Performance

Trusted Talent

These individuals have reached the limit of their career potential, however they are still experienced high performers. They are valuable employees and specialists in their role and can deliver good results if they deal with tasks of the same level of complexity. They are not necessarily motivated to expand their expertise due to their limited skill set or mindset.

Indicators selection

Another important feature of the Bryq 9-box is the ability to select an indicator from the built-in ones and the custom ones like you company's culture indicator.

Upon selection of an indicator each employee gets a colour indicating how that employee scores i.e. ranks.

When you hover an individual i.e. employee you should now be seeing information about all different scores and typically a recommendation text for each built in indicator.

In particular, the legends per colour shading are the following:

Export / Print functionality

Finally, you can easily print the 9-box and save it in PDF via the relevant functionality on the top right side of the page.

Alternatively, you may export the data of 9-box in excel format via the relevant button on the top right.

Did this answer your question?