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In a workplace setting, probation is a status given to new employees of a company or business. This status allows a supervisor or other company manager to closely evaluate the progress and skills of the newly hired worker, determine appropriate assignments and monitor other aspects of the employee – such as how they interacts with co-workers, supervisors or customers.

A probationary period varies widely depending on the business, but usually lasts anywhere from 30 to 90 days. If the new employee shows promise and does well during the probationary time, they are usually removed from probationary status, and may be given a raise or promotion as well (in addition to other privileges, as defined by the business). Probation is usually defined in a company's employee handbook, which is given to workers when they first begin a job.

The probationary period also allows an employer to terminate an employee who is determined not to be doing well at their job or otherwise deemed not suitable for a particular position. Some companies have an at will policy, which allows a company manager to terminate an employee at any point during the probationary period.

Some companies may place employees on probationary status, particularly if their performance is below a set standard or for disciplinary reasons. In this instance, the employee is usually given a period of time to either improve their performance or modify their behavior before more severe measures are used. Similarly, students with unsatisfactory grades may also be placed on academic probation by their institution.

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