An employee rewards and recognition program is key to employee engagement, making your employees feel valued and knowing that you recognize their hard work. Engaged employees feel a sense of purpose at work, which creates extra energy and commitment — employee engagement is also directly related to well-being. And we know the impact is real. When you invest in employee well-being — their emotional, financial, physical and work well-being — they invest back into the company.
The not-so-magic formula for improving employee engagement is knowing how to recognize and reward employees, especially high performers. The goal is to praise employees for their achievements, hard work or a job well done. Not every employee rewards and recognition program will be the same — it's about focusing on meaningful employee appreciation. Find out the best ways to reward your best employees with PickJobs.
Show appreciation with public thanks/praise
Sometimes a simple "thank you" can do wonders, especially in a public format—like a company-wide meeting or email. Offer to write a recommendation that I can attach to my resume.
In the age of email and texting, a simple handwritten note really stands out. Take a few moments to write your thanks on a pretty card or even grab a colorful piece of paper or a sticky note.
Offer time off
If employees are putting in extra hours or a weekend to complete a project, consider offering an extra day off - or letting them leave a few hours earlier on Fridays.
Give small gifts
There is no need to go over budget with large cash gifts. Instead, consider thoughtful but inexpensive gifts such as gift cards to a local coffee shop or grocery store, movie tickets, or flowers.
Cover the cost of commuting
If employees pay for parking or public transportation on their own, offer a reward of one month of free parking, a bus pass, or a gas ticket. Check the average salary for work in that profession, with other employers, and stay competent.
Individual massages can be expensive, but if you want to reward a large group of employees, you might consider hiring a masseuse for the day and offering each a 15-minute chair massage.
Highlight the best employees on your company's blog or newsletter
By showcasing your best employees on your company's blog or newsletter, you're not only giving them the recognition they deserve, you're also communicating what your company values in top employees. This is great for future recruitment as well as motivating existing employees.
Schedule company-wide activities
Many companies plan holiday parties, but you can recognize good work year-round by planning an impromptu activity that gives employees a few hours of free time. Other ideas for rewarding employees include a summer field day — with barbecues and outdoor games — or a company-sponsored happy hour. All company events do more than recognize hard work — they also boost morale and build relationships and collaboration between departments.