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Do you adequately drive returns on recognition program investments?

The most significant benefits that come along with effective employee recognition and rewards programs are not always the easiest to measure, especially as a wealth of positive impacts come in an indirect fashion.

The most significant benefits that come along with effective employee recognition and rewards programs are not always the easiest to measure, especially as a wealth of positive impacts come in an indirect fashion. However, as many managers and supervisors already know well, they will not be able to make a business case in boardroom meetings for these investments if they cannot clearly outline at least some of the financial returns that will come shortly thereafter. 

As such, sometimes it will be necessary to think outside the box, as well as ensure that the programs being put into play touch upon all of the objectives that the company wishes to attain through enhanced recognition strategies. Because measuring matters such as employee engagement is still relatively new for the average business leader, seeking out assistance from a firm that specializes in these strategies is often the best path forward. 

The efforts put forth at the beginning stages of research and development will generally dictate the success or failure of the programs down the road, not to mention the level of returns on investment that companies will be able to expect. This is why professional services will be more helpful when the firm is tapping the resources for both recognition economics and measurement support, as well as the formulation and delivery of the programs over time. 

What to remember
Flippant employee recognition programs will simply not come back with any returns on investment, and they can even work against the firm with respect to poor engagement and morale. Workforce members will be quick to pick up on the either sincere or apathetic approaches of their employers when it comes to these programs, and ensuring that the image put into their minds is a positive one is critical to the overall success of the strategy. 

Manufacturing.net recently explained some of the ways in which companies can ensure that recognition and rewards programs are set up for success, affirming that the link between the delivery of strategies and the attainment of objectives needs to be crystal clear. According to the news provider, rewards should come with significance, and recognition needs to be a bit more personal than some organizations give it credit for. 

One of the best ways to ensure that these points are touched upon in the strategy is to look to employees as sources of insight, trying to identify which types of personal touches they prefer by way of recognition and what kinds of rewards will be valued the most in their eyes. As soon as the firm understands these matters clearly and objectively, managers will be better positioned to excel throughout the delivery and management of the programs. 

Furthermore, Manufacturing.net noted that team-building is an excellent way to get recognition programs moving in the right direction, especially since this can organically lead to peer-based delivery of praise that puts a comprehensive spin on the strategy. Remember, only having managers involved in these matters can be a big mistake, as studies indicate that peer recognition is just as, if not more, advantageous. 

The source went on to explain that all types of recognition and rewards should be specifically and clearly attached some type of performance objective, as this will help employees understand how their actions lead to praise. Finally, the news provider asserted that managers and supervisors should be working to make their workplaces comfortable, fun and engaging, as the culture surrounding the recognition and rewards programs will have a vast impact on long-term returns on investment. 

As for measurement…
Clearly projecting returns on investment for these programs before they are deployed can be extremely difficult, but companies must ensure that they are setting themselves up for accurate and efficient measurement of recognition success. Experts often assert that companies have been forced to become more intelligent, agile and progressive in light of major catalysts such as the economic recession and more recent rise in competition thanks largely to the nation's revitalized financial wellness. 

So, if a recognition program is launched without a clear line of metrics in place, the firm will not be able to understand exactly how the investments are panning out, nor how the strategies could be refined for even stronger performances. With the importance of agility and intelligence in mind, it only makes sense that measurement which will yield insights into what needs to be done to maintain the initiative's relevance must be a priority. 

Recognition economics, again, can be difficult endeavors, and leveraging the support of a proven firm that specializes in these matters might be just the right medicine to get the programs off to the right start.

Ever wonder what the myths and facts of recognition entail? Click here to download our white paper.

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