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10 Benefits of Employee Recognition Programs

In a study conducted by global management consulting firm The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) involving more than 200,000 respondents, “appreciation for your work” ranked as the leading factor for employees’ happiness on the job. Despite the popular opinion that often points to salary or flexibility as the leading factor for job satisfaction, the BCG found that most employees crave recognition for their work, highlighting the benefits of employee recognition. Other factors like “work environment” and “job content and opportunities” also ranked higher than pay, which came in eighth.

You cannot pay someone plenty of money, fail to commend them for good work, and expect the employee to do their job well because they take home a fat paycheck. It would help if you found unique and creative ways to offer formal recognition by providing formal employee recognition programs with attractive “rewards” they can choose.

An employee recognition scheme is one of the best ways to keep your employees happy, motivated, and engaged. If your company does not have one yet, there are several ways to get started. You can use one-on-one meetings or have a peer scoring mechanism to make employees feel valued for their performance, milestones, accomplishments, and anniversaries.

If you already have a program in place, ensure that your workers know that it exists and understand how to take part.

The Benefits of Employee Recognition Programs on Your Business

By recognizing your employees’ efforts, you can directly or indirectly influence many beneficial factors that your business needs to succeed. All the factors below are crucial for the efficient functioning of your organization, and all help establish a better employee and customer experience.

Here are some of the benefits of employee recognition programs for your business:

1. Cultivating a Sense Of Belonging and Gratification

As humans, it is natural to want praise for our hardships or efforts. Praise comes with a sense of gratification that motivates us to work harder and do more.

The same principles apply to your employees’ feelings about the recognition they get at work. Nothing makes your employee happier than receiving praise or being awarded in front of their colleagues. The recognition becomes even more meaningful if it has a peer-review element to the award. Your employee’s sense of gratification because of recognizing their achievements fills them with joy and a zeal to do even better than before.

What’s more, if you cultivate a culture of appreciation for employees who put extra effort into their work, your workers feel like they belong to and have a meaningful stake in the success of your organization. These intangible “feel good” factors help your employees keep up their drive and motivation to deliver the best service to your customers.

The sense of belonging that comes through recognition for outstanding achievements is an important factor, according to a LinkedIn report titled “Inside the Mind of Today’s Candidate.” The report found that 59 percent of surveyed employees said that recognition for their accomplishments was the leading factor in helping them feel that they were needed and belong at a company.

2. Promoting a Healthier and Happier Corporate Culture

An organization’s corporate culture is a leading factor in its success or failure.

Simply put, your company’s corporate culture is the culmination of its prevailing ideologies, aims, and perspectives about everything associated with the products and services it offers. By acknowledging your employees’ efforts, you can positively affect the company culture by developing a sense of respect among everyone in your organization.

Related: 4 Recognition Trends We Expect in 2021

3. Reducing the Number of Call-Outs by Employees

Many factors affect the number of work hours that your business loses to absences. With HR professionals reporting a dramatic rise in absenteeism in their organizations due to stress and burnout, it is a significant cause of lost productivity.

Although employee recognition is not the single antidote to absences among your staff, it still helps you promote an environment with healthier and happier workers. Besides recognition assuring your employees that they are doing well for your company, it can increase their sense of personal happiness that their work is appreciated. A survey shows that recognition lowers the number of sick days employees take by 64 percent.

4. Boosting Employee Morale

In their first days at a new job, most employees deliver on their assigned tasks with a high level of confidence and enthusiasm. However, as the days pass, their motivation and confidence start to wane because of a repetitive work cycle.

Although they might still perform their duties to an acceptable level, a closer look will show a noticeable drop in the performance level.

However, one of the benefits of employee recognition through an awards and rewards scheme is that it provides a simple way to mitigate the problem of employee demotivation. Appreciating your employees for their efforts makes them feel like what they are doing is worthwhile and helps lift their morale.

5. Inspires Fellow Employees

We all draw inspiration from outstanding individuals who go above and beyond what they are expected to do and are therefore honored for their achievements.

In the same way, whenever you recognize an employee with a reward or award, it gives them extra motivation and inspires other team members. In this way, your employees can engage each other in a healthy competition that further enhances their skills and abilities, giving your company a competitive edge over your competitors.

The positive vibes that come from seeing a peer succeed and be recognized for their effort show the rest of your team what is possible if they apply themselves to their tasks a bit more. The inspiration they get replenishes their motivation and boosts their overall productivity.

6. Helps Your Company Retain Its Best Talent

A common saying in corporate circles is, “Employees don’t leave the company; they leave their bosses.” A principal reason employees leave a company and companies failing to attract top talent is the lack of appreciation for good work.

For this reason, your entire management team should fully participate in your employee recognition program alongside the employee’s peers. Management involvement validates employees’ and job candidates’ feelings that the top echelons of your organization care about the work they do.

Related: Personalize Rewards to Strengthen Manager-Employee Relationships

The modern-day employee wants their efforts to be visibly appreciated and valued. Although a large paycheck could bring a smile to their faces, it only lasts for the day when their salary gets credited to their bank account. Lasting contentment and engagement is the result of acknowledgement for their work.

Frequently appreciating your employees, even for small wins, will give them a reason to maintain their association and connection to your organization.

Celebrating the achievements of your employees plays an important part in helping you to retain your best-performing employees and attract top talent to your company.

7. Strengthens Your Workplace Relationships

When everyone in your workplace pulls together, then achieving even the most ambitious goals becomes easier.

To achieve its goals, your company needs to maintain good relationships among everyone within your organization. Although there are many ways to strengthen your employer-employee relationships, having a formal employee recognition program will be the catalyst for your other efforts.

Furthermore, by encouraging peer participation in the recognition or award scheme, you promote a sense of camaraderie among your employees, enhancing professional relationships among your staff.

8. Strengthens Employees’ Passion And Commitment

Studies show that constant recognition of achievements results in a significant boost in employee engagement metrics.

Typically, you can measure engagement by conducting surveys amongst your employees where they self-select into three broad categories: fully engaged, disengaged, and actively disengaged. In this case, the worker’s category lets you know more about the level of commitment and passion they feel for their job and its impact on the effort put into their tasks.

Recent research shows fairly uninspiring numbers regarding the current trends in employee engagement.

According to a Gallup study titled “State of the American Workplace,” only 36 percent of American employees feel fully engaged at work, with a staggering 49 percent feeling disengaged and a further 15 percent actively disengaged. It is clear that millions of employees feel disconnected from their companies and jobs and are not committing themselves fully to their tasks.

Because of these numbers, it is clear that implementing an employee recognition program based on peer reviews, performance analysis, or work milestones or anniversaries is an essential part of boosting engagement.

9. Less Reliance on Management

A peer recognition program is mostly self-sufficient. Your company’s management no longer has to be the singular driving force behind fostering workplace engagement, appreciation, and collaboration.

However, this does not mean that managers do not have a role in a recognition program. A Gallup poll found that 24 percent of respondents said that the most memorable recognition came from their CEO. Being thanked by your company’s top brass improves the working relationship and trust employees have with their higher-ups.

However, thanks to peer-to-peer employee recognition software solutions, it is even easier for all levels of the organization to show their appreciation. The software can initiate recognition based on pre-set parameters or piggyback on feedback to recommend rewards.

10. Higher Customer Satisfaction

When your employees feel appreciated, they are more likely to offer better support and care to your customers.

Happiness and satisfaction are contagious – If you need to boost customer satisfaction, a great place to start is making your employees happy. When your employees feel content at work, they provide your customers with good experiences. The result is a boost in revenue.

According to a national survey published in Forbes, engaged employees help to boost customer satisfaction. The result is a 20% increase in sales and word-of-mouth referrals. Satisfied customers are more likely to bring you more business.

Strengthen Management’s Acknowledgment of Great Work with Peer Recognition

Most companies rely on employee recognition flowing downwards, with leaders expected to identify great work and appreciate it. However, when leaders are the sole source of appreciation for top performers, a lot of good work behind the scenes may go unnoticed.

Offering a platform for your employees to recognize each other’s work and efforts is an excellent way for you to develop a positive environment. A big part of your corporate culture should be implementing a peer-to-peer recognition mechanism that connects to your company values.

Participation in this type of recognition model is typically extremely high. As research by The Incentive Research Foundation found, millennials, in particular, prefer to receive recognition and appreciation from their peers publicly. Also, private recognition was the least preferred way to be acknowledged across all the age groups surveyed.

Solutions to Power Unique and Inspiring Employee Recognition Programs

You do not always have to deliver recognition for your employees in a fancy way. The recognition could be informal; for instance, handwritten “thank you” notes.

However, you could choose to be more formal through an enterprise-wide technology solution from Xceleration that allows peers to take part in identifying high performers in your organization. Xceleration is a full-service reward, recognition, and incentives company, providing solutions to companies worldwide via RewardStation, a proprietary web-based software platform.

Through RewardStation, your employees earn points when recognized by a peer or manager for accomplishing a specific objective. The employee can then redeem their points for items on our online catalog of merchandise and gift cards.

With our acquisition of Luxury Concierge Travel and their team and expertise into our company, your employees can also redeem their points for high-touch concierge travel awards. Your high achievers will appreciate personalized trips and excursions unique to their tastes instead of traditional group travel rewards.

Contact us today, and let us help you design a rewarding, impactful, and memorable employee recognition experience.

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