Stay Up-to-date with Xceleration

How to Create an Effective and Exciting Employee Rewards Program

co workers giving great feedback scaled

Recognition is not just a desirable aspect of a company’s culture; it’s a prerequisite for corporate success. Every team member desires and deserves to be recognized on a regular basis. Employees want to feel that their contributions, no matter how seemingly insignificant, are valued. A sense of appreciation can also be beneficial for employers, as well. Employees perform better work when they are praised for it, which impacts your organization’s bottom line.

Unfortunately, not many employees feel as appreciated as they should. According to a recent study, many employees have reported that they have not received positive feedback or recognition in nearly two months. Businesses that are not investing in employee recognition are doing their employees a major disservice. That mistake could result in poor employee retention rates.

So how can today’s modern businesses show their appreciation to their employees? It all comes down to employee rewards programs. There are plenty of tools out there designed to make the delivery of such rewards programs easy.

In this guide, we’ll break down everything you need to know about starting an effective employee rewards program. We’ll also explore what employee rewards programs actually entail and why rewards programs are so crucial for competitive businesses in 2022.

What are Employee Rewards Programs?

Employee rewards programs are policies put in place by a company to recognize and inspire employees both individually and collectively. They are usually regarded as independent from compensation; however, they may be monetary or have another cost to the organization. 

Small firms have begun to use these programs as a tool to attract top personnel in a competitive job market. They are also used to improve employee performance, despite the fact that these programs were previously thought to be the realm of big corporations.

Employee recognition programs are frequently linked with reward programs. However, they both serve a distinct function. Recognition programs are supposed to help with employee mental health. Rewards programs offer incentives. Many aspects of developing and managing reward and recognition systems are similar. However, business owners who want to motivate their employees while keeping expenses low should consider this distinction.

Why Do Organizations Need Employee Rewards Programs?

Simply said, employees who feel appreciated are more productive. Employees dissatisfied with their working conditions are more prone to squander time. They may take long breaks and take advantage of business resources for personal gain.

Many employees may not even realize they are doing this. If management is absent and encouragement is hard to come by, it’s easy to slip into unproductive behaviors. By making employees feel encouraged and appreciated, workplace recognition programs may help reduce waste and boost productivity. It’s a win-win situation for employers and employees alike.

Employee incentive programs can also help to promote fairness and enhance morale in the workplace. However, this can backfire. Unforeseen repercussions can occur when employees are honored without explicit standards for earning recognition. Employee of the Month awards might make employees suspicious of favoritism, lowering corporate morale. 

Instead, build your recognition programs around quantifiable performance benchmarks or timeframes. Consider allowing workers and supervisors to participate in the nomination process. This is a good idea if you want to highlight skills that aren’t as tangible, such as teamwork or customer service. 

The most effective programs recognize and reward individuals within the business and encourage the whole workforce through the prospect of recognition.

Rewards programs may also help to enhance the culture of a firm. Your corporate culture heavily influences your brand identity. It has repercussions in every part of your business. Your business culture is the means through which you keep the promise you made to your clients in your mission statement. 

Employees, as well as consumers, respect the culture of your organization. Employees are increasingly considering the organization’s culture more important than their pay. After all, for most, a large paycheck is an insufficient remuneration for a job that you despise. 

Employee award programs may demonstrate to employees that their successes are recognized and respected by both management and their peers. This ensures that they feel valued by both.

The Benefits of Using Employee Rewards Programs

There are many benefits to using employee rewards programs, including:

  • Engagement. Employee engagement refers to an employee’s emotional commitment to the business and its aims. Employee engagement improves when employees are rewarded for their hard work. They will be more motivated to assist the company to achieve its goals if they feel appreciated.
  • Reduced employee turnover. Because of something as simple as a bad manager, many people abandon their employment. They will simply move on and look to organizations with a better company culture. 

      This suggests that just boosting connections between employees and management might help you decrease turnover. Employee recognition through incentives programs is a great approach to build appreciation and communication throughout the company.

  • Increased morale. Identifying and recognizing your workers’ contributions might be a good way to boost their morale. Combined with a well-functioning staff retention strategy, a well-planned employee incentives program may achieve greater outcomes.
  • Improved health. Employees are exhausted when they are constantly doing difficult tasks. It even impacts their health negatively, and it may also lead to depression. Employee appreciation programs, on the other hand, boost employees’ health (both physical and mental) as it produces a positive feeling in employees. As a result, individuals are less likely to suffer from depression or other health problems.
  • Improved workplace culture. When employees are recognized for their contributions, it goes a long way toward making the workplace a place where they want to work. As their effort is recognized, they begin to consider the firm to be a part of their lives. 

      Recognition contributes to the creation of a healthy and joyful atmosphere. Employees are more inclined to put in extra effort on important tasks when they identify a favorable corporate culture. They are delighted to be affiliated with a healthy workplace rather than merely working for a wage.

Clearly, the benefits are almost endless for today’s modern company.

H2: How to Set Up an Employee Rewards Program

There are many different ways to set up an employee rewards program. However, you can follow these general steps to get started:

  1. Make your vision clear. Before you begin implementing employee incentives programs, you must first understand what they include. Make sure you understand your objectives, expectations, and the desired outcome of the employee incentive program.
  1. Calculate your expenses and set a budget. To minimize overpaying or a bad return on investment, it’s critical to offer a cost estimate.
  1. Make a committee to oversee the awarding of prizes. Appoint a few employees to be in charge of implementing, maintaining, and establishing incentive programs, regardless of the size of your firm.
  1. Define your rewards program’s qualities. In general, you should make sure that your program incentives are provided on time, they are regular, they are specific, and they are worth something.
  1. The next step is to establish precise criteria for obtaining rewards. Setting the criteria for being recognized and acknowledged is the key to genuine recognition in the workplace. 

All employees should be able to get recognition in a simple, accessible, and convenient manner. You must select what type of good work is acknowledged to make incentives and recognition meaningful. Consider which sorts of actions should be rewarded, how they should be awarded, and how often your staff should be recognized.

  1. Implement your strategy with the help of an easy-to-use rewards program.
  1. Your incentives program should be evaluated and revisited on a regular basis. Your job isn’t done until the rewards and recognition program is effectively established. Successful recognition programs have a beneficial influence on the entire organization.

All this said, the effectiveness of the program is unsubstantiated when there is no method to quantify it. Your rewards platform may provide a metric for determining the program’s success, but you also need to revisit the program frequently. It seems impossible that your awards should remain constant in the face of shifting corporate demands and employee needs. On the contrary, it must constantly evolve and adapt to suit the needs of an ever-changing workforce.

Tips for a Great Employee Rewards Program

Make sure your staff incentive program is tailored to your needs. It’s critical to tailor the message, celebration, and reward to the unique accomplishments of your staff when expressing “thank you.” Choose reward platforms that allow you to personalize your prizes.

Allowing your staff to pick their own awards may also be a smart idea. It’s critical to provide diversity in your employee incentives catalog so that employees have several alternatives to pick from. 

There’s also a correlation between variety and drive when it comes to employee appreciation. Consider this: would you be motivated to put out your best effort for the same prize every time? Most likely not. That’s why we suggest switching up your employee incentives catalog and filling it with a range of options so that employees don’t get bored and can always choose a prize that’s unique to them.

When developing an employee incentives program, always keep the individuals in mind. Because they’re simple to “set and forget,” certain types of employee appreciation programs are minimal maintenance for HR executives and managers. An effective incentive program provides your employees with a tangible token of your appreciation.

In terms of recognition, your incentives program should likewise be inclusive. When it comes to the employee experience, inclusion is critical. That’s why forward-thinking HR departments maintain inclusiveness at the forefront of their recruitment, onboarding, and culture-focused processes. 

Employee appreciation is also a crucial element of the experience, and it should be implemented across the board. Unfortunately, many employee incentive schemes might unwittingly create organizational silos. Peer-to-peer award schemes, for example, are sometimes unequally dispersed and benefit more cross-functional and visible teams, such as marketing or sales. Other back-of-the-house functions, such as finance, legal, and even your HR colleagues, are cut out of a critical aspect of the employee experience as a result.

In addition to ensuring everyone in your company is involved in the rewards program, it’s also essential to ensure that the rewards you’re offering are appropriate for your workforce. According to one study, about 68 percent of HR leaders had to increase the number of eligible employees that could receive rewards in 2021. 

To put it simply, you’ll need to be competitive. You may have to provide more generous or creative rewards in comparison to your competitors. You don’t want your current employees to move on to them.

Lastly, make sure your rewards program reflects your actual company culture. Your company’s culture and principles should be reflected in your employee appreciation initiatives. It makes no sense to adopt a transactional and impersonal program if your company prides itself on being compassionate and close-knit.

Xceleration Can Help You Create an Effective and Fun Employee Rewards Program

We’ve established why employee rewards programs are beneficial to today’s organizations. But how can companies properly implement such programs? There’s always the option to do it the old-school way, but this can take up a lot of time and resources. For the modern business, using a modern solution for employee recognition is key. Xceleration is a tool that offers just that– a robust, user-friendly application that your workforce can use to identify potential rewards and goals. If employee engagement is your goal, our platform can deliver.

Contact our team at Xceleration today to learn more about our platform’s features and our pricing.

Share this post!

Subscribe to get the latest from our blog!

We use cookies to measure our website's performance and enhance your browsing experience. By continuing to browse our site, you agree to our use of cookies, in accordance with our privacy policy.