Why is Employee Recognition Important?
Employee recognition is a key staff incentive that can be an integral part of your company culture. It’s a way of demonstrating appreciation to employees for all their hard work, which in turn promotes goodwill and leads to high levels of staff satisfaction and loyalty. Once established as an important value to your business, employee recognition should grow organically and become reciprocal, encouraging staff to recognise, respect and support each other’s hard work too.
So how do you go about integrating an employee recognition programme as a staff incentive for your business?
Find an employee reward and recognition specialist
It’s worth first pointing out that you don’t have to set up an employee incentive programme alone. There are experts available to advise and support your introduction to employee recognition. Corporate Rewards is an employee recognition and incentives specialist with vast experience in the sector. Our step-by-step approach below can craft a bespoke staff incentives rewards scheme for you, which will integrate seamlessly and enhance your employee relationships.
1) Appoint a project leader
Your first step should be to identify a champion to lead the employee recognition project from within your company. They will be the main point of contact for your incentives partner and will drive the project on your behalf. The project leader will need to make strategic decisions, approve the awards and activities made available to employees, and communicate the scheme to your workforce.
2) Identify your goals
For example, are you looking to improve staff retention or boost morale? You could then link your objectives to your company values or mission statement to ensure your programme perfectly fits your business.
Another great way to identify your objectives is to run an employee engagement survey and find out what your workforce likes, versus what they’d like to improve. Once set, consider benchmarking your employee incentive rewards scheme against these KPIs to ensure it has the desired effect.
3) Design your employee recognition programme
Now it’s a good time to decide how your staff incentives scheme will look and how you want it to function. To help you do this, consider asking yourself questions like: will your award allocation be a management decision, or will you invite employees to nominate one another? Will reward periods be designated as monthly or quarterly affairs, or would you prefer to offer an ad-hoc facility? You might decide to offer long-service awards to motivate loyalty and longevity. Or perhaps you feel an accrual system is best, whereby employees build points to work towards a chosen reward.
Remember, contemporary employee recognition programmes are flexible, allowing you to run your system the way you want.
4) Select your rewards
The next stage is to choose what rewards you’d like to offer. Historically, rewards that companies provide in their employee incentive programmes have often been financial. However, cash tends to be easily frittered away and lost in an employee’s daily outgoings. Businesses are now shifting away from giving out money and moving towards offering more personalised, tangible, or leisure-oriented awards.
Personal and tangible rewards, like a set of golf clubs for the sports fan in your business, or a trip to London’s West End for the company theatre lover, are more likely to be genuinely enjoyed and appreciated than money. The pleasure of winning such an award can also create that all-important feel-good factor, as well as bring gratitude and loyalty towards your company.
5) Set an approvals process for your rewards scheme
The functionality of your employee recognition programme is also an important factor. And, with many rewards schemes now running online, they have never been easier to manage and maintain.
Settings can include two-way visibility, which allows staff and management to check up on status and tracking. Notifications can be sent so managers won’t miss those moments when targets are hit. Nomination approvals can also be set so that rewards are only issued at the appropriate time and can be approved before rewards are issued. Different levels of access within the user-friendly interface and permissions can be given within the management team. In addition to this, an online system can make reporting simple, with instant access to data, performance, budgets and ROI accountability.
6) Launch your employee recognition programme
When it comes to the launch of your new staff incentives scheme, it’s wise to have realistic expectations for how your staff first take to it. A new employee incentive programme should therefore have a bedding-in period, which allows staff time to understand and buy into it. Given that this will impact on your company culture, and that people are naturally resistant to change, it’s important to introduce everyone to the system in a positive and exciting way.
Perhaps hold a launch event, which celebrates and communicates the positive change you’re making for your staff. Also, consider running some training sessions, so that everyone is comfortable with the new system and can get involved as soon as possible. And, once the launch furore dies down, try maintaining momentum to keep your employee recognition programme front of mind, so that your staff don’t forget about it. A good way to do this is by putting together a monthly newsletter. You could also email staff announcements that inform employees about the latest rewards achieved and promote what new wins are available.
Implementing an effective employee recognition programme
When progressing through the steps of implementing an employee recognition programme, it’s important to ensure it is fully effective. You should make sure you offer a range of effective ways to recognise and reward your staff. You should also make sure it is in line with your business requirements and fits your company budget.
We’d love to excite, engage and inspire your staff with our innovative employee recognition schemes. To speak to a member of our award-winning team to make a quick online enquiry and find out how to drive your business performance today.