How to Implement a Stellar Employee Recognition Program

How to Implement a Stellar Employee Recognition Program

We’ve gone on and on about how important it is to show your customers love, but what about the people who work so hard to keep all of your customers satisfied? 

There are many benefits of actively working to recognize your employees for accomplishments, anniversaries, and milestones. Beyond increasing employee engagement and motivation, consistent recognition can also lead to better employee retention. With employee turnover being a nagging recurring cost for CEOs all over the world, employee recognition is no longer simply a nice-to-have. Here are a few tips on how to launch an employee recognition program that your organization can be excited about.

Get creative

An employee of the month program is no longer going to cut it. While applauding tenure milestones is great, try to look beyond that when mapping out opportunities for employees to get recognized. Peer recognition, outstanding customer feedback, or exceptional performance are all great reasons to shout out a team member.

Determine your spend

Creating (and sticking) to a budget is crucial for maximizing the return on investment for your new employee recognition program. Get feedback from key stakeholders on an appropriate budget for the program, and consider all expenses when planning your spend. Remember that your budget will go toward more than just your pre-planned rewards– communication materials, external resources, and extra rewards for surprise occasions are all things that you should keep in mind when creating a budget. 

Recognize regularly

Don’t wait around for an anniversary to celebrate an employee. After all, they should be recognized for more than simply sticking around. Keep recognition consistent to ensure that your employees feel appreciated throughout the year. Not every moment of recognition needs to come with an expensive reward. Calling out someone’s achievements or great work goes a long way! 

Make it matter

We believe that recognizing employees who embody your organization’s values is a great way to organically enhance a positive company culture. The rewards that you choose are also an opportunity to showcase your organization’s values. Think about what your company stands for. How can you tie those values into your employee rewards program? Recognition gifts that give back to a cause or support an organization that your company aligns with can serve a dual purpose by showing love to your employees while pushing toward your corporate social responsibility goals at the same time. 

Tell everyone 

Once you’ve created an employee recognition program, set a budget, and chosen rewards, it’s time to create a communication strategy to spread the word. Communication is key in making sure your employees feel appreciated, and in ensuring that your stakeholders get a clear sense of the program’s value. Decide on a cadence for your program communications, and keep them relevant to your organization. Whether you choose to call out employees in a monthly newsletter or in weekly townhalls, keep things consistent and create a feedback loop so that you can continuously improve your program. 


These are the basics for how to start an amazing employee recognition program that ensures your employees feel appreciated on an ongoing basis. What are your favourite tactics for creating an employee recognition program? 


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