Tips for an employee rewards program

17 Jul

How do you reward employees for a job well done?

Retention and turnover are some of the biggest issues human resources managers deal with on a day-to-day basis. Consequently, HR departments are constantly looking for good employee engagement ideas. These problems are not easy to solve, but providing employee recognition programs is one way to help employees realize their work is valued. What makes a good employee recognition program?

Give staff rewards they want
You may think a gift card to an area restaurant is an appropriate gift, but do your employees agree? Maybe they would rather have an appreciation event with catered food or even extra time off. Rewards programs work best when the incentives are actually desirable. Consider polling your employees to find out what kinds of rewards would inspire them to participate in the program.

Provide up-front rewards
It's a good idea to reward employees immediately for a job well done, according to Incentive Magazine. It may be tempting to wait until the end of the quarter or year for a big ceremony, but it's better to reward employees along the way. This helps to motivate them consistently and keeps morale high. It's OK to have a final reward dinner, but provide smaller incentives at intervals along the way.

Make sure the rules are fair
There are a number of things to consider when setting up a rewards program. You want to make sure employees can actually obtain rewards while still having to work hard to achieve their goals. In addition, make sure every department is able to obtain rewards. Frequently review the past winners to be sure that you are equally representing all departments and not focusing on a small few.

Tie rewards to business values
Make sure your reasoning for giving out awards is strategic, as these programs tend to be more successful. A study from Society of Human Resources Management found that companies who tied their recognition programs to the values of their organizations were more likely to perceive their programs as successful. However, only slightly more than one-half of organizations connected their programs with the company's values. Use your company's values as a basis for rewards. For instance, if you value teamwork, reward staff who demonstrate a willingness and ability to collaborate with others.

Rewards programs are effective ways to show employees you care. Feeling valued leads to personal growth and greater retention rates.

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