Employee recognition and employee recognition programs are part of the total reward framework for many thought leading businesses today. When well designed, Employee Recognition programs can have a positive effect on an employee’s rationale and “emotional engagement.” Which can lead to discretionary effort.
The most common definition of Employee Recognition is “the action or process of recognising or being recognised”. Recognition can be delivered on behalf of the company to an individual, by a manager, customer or more powerfully, by peers who witness the great contribution of their fellow employees in their everyday environment.
If recognition is given consistently and frequently, and most importantly is genuine, it can have a significant impact on employee productivity, engagement and overall behaviour, which could lead to improved customer service, fewer sick days, reduced staff turnover and more.
Is it important?
The importance of employee recognition in today’s modern workplace has been proven in numerous independent studies. Employee recognition has evolved from focusing on tenure of service and recognising people who meet employment milestones (which may recognise staying power rather than contribution – probably not what you want). The impact of employee-designed and employee-led recognition programs where the recognition is frequent and authentic is getting a lot of attention because it represents a great investment.
Employees who are recognised are often more engaged, and engaged employees tend to equate to higher retention rates and reduced absenteeism. Great work relationships are fostered by positive environments and a ‘culture of recognition’ can make workplaces great places to be, where employees want to do their best work.
Recognition reinforces the behaviours you want to see more of in your organisation to help align all your people to your goals and vision.
Recognition is a great investment. It costs nothing to say “thank you” or “great job,” and Recognition can highlight behaviours you want to see, and more importantly, want repeated.
What recognition isn’t
Recognition is not compensation, nor ‘at risk compensation’ – it is not about incentives or bonuses tied to performance goals. If your base salaries are below average and your people don’t believe they are paid fairly for their contribution, recognition won’t change that.
Effective Recognition Programs usually include peer to peer, top down, manager to team member or customer feedback recognition. They should be able to be automatically generate notifications for anniversaries, length of service, or key dates. They should be for individuals, teams, departments, groups or company-wide. There should be no problem with be self-nomination, especially for remote workers – such as recognition for innovation suggestions or kicking goals, as long as the right approval process is in place.
When the concept of reward is added to recognition it introduces the feel good factor, validating that impact as something worth celebrating. Great rewards create stories within your organisation and amongst your employees networks, reinforcing your employer brand positively from the inside out.
Todays modern best practice online and “instant” recognition programs are different in several ways.
- They favour frequent and small instances of recognition that reaches everyone, instead of large lavish gestures that reach only a few ‘high performers’. If there is only one winner, by reason there are many “losers.”
- The instances of recognition within the program are visible to everyone and ‘socialised’ just like on social media, creating conversations around great behaviours.
- The recognition program is often designed by the employees. In our experience, employee designed programs are more creative, engaging and employees have a sense of ownership.
As a rule of thumb the best practice for budget allocation is between .05 and 2 percent of payroll depending on the number of employees and the objectives of the program. For a program to succeed each person needs to know how his or her work contributes to the company’s values, goals and results. This is where we help.
Brownie Points works with thought leading organisations around the world, helping to engage their staff with personalised employee recognition programs that deliver a measurable benefit to the business.
To learn how Brownie Points could help your business, call us today on 03 9909 7411 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a no obligation demonstration.