5 Reasons to Implement an Employee Recognition Program

Everyone has bad days at work. Sometimes, all it takes is a little pat on the back to turn your whole mood around.

That’s why employee recognition programs are so important for companies that want to keep employees engaged with their jobs. Everyone needs to feel appreciated. Employees who don’t feel they’re getting recognized at work for their achievements and commitment to professional development will quickly lose the motivation to keep performing at a high level. Employee recognition programs can keep employees engaged, boost sales, strengthen your company culture, lower your rate of turnover, and boost overall performance.

1) Strengthen Your Company Culture

Employee recognition can lay the foundation upon which you can build a strong and healthy company culture. People working at companies with strong employee recognition programs are more likely to trust their team members and feel connected to them emotionally. That strengthens the company culture and makes for a non-toxic, happy, healthy workplace environment – one in which everyone trusts their colleagues to be able to perform to a high standard.

2) Boost Performance

People who work at companies with strong employee recognition programs report feeling 74 percent less stress at work and 106 percent more energy. They take 13 percent fewer sick days and they’re 50 percent more productive. That’s because strong employee recognition programs make employees feel more motivated to do better work. 

An effective employee recognition program doesn’t have to mean pulling out all the stops when it’s time to recognize an employee’s hard work. In fact, you’re more likely to do more elaborate employee recognition awards less often, and that can backfire. Employees need frequent and regular recognition for their hard work every day. This could be as simple as regular performance conversations with supervisors or a simple pat on the back for doing an extra good job on a specific task or project.

3) Increase Engagement

Boosting engagement in your workforce has a number of benefits for your company, because engaged employees are employees who are committed to your company and want to work to help your company succeed. According to Gallup, business units with high levels of engagement see 41 percent less absenteeism and 17 percent more productivity. 

Achieve higher engagement levels by giving your employees recognition that takes into account the larger picture of your company and its goals. Understanding how their efforts align with company goals is especially effective at helping employees maintain high levels of engagement. Incorporate recognition into performance reviews, regular one-on-ones, and other forms of feedback you give your employees, but make sure to frame it in terms of how it’s helping the company.

4) Improve Sales

You could always do with more sales, right? And recognizing sales team members for their achievements will motivate them to work harder to close the deal. A motivated sales team can increase profits by as much as 21 percent but money may not be what motivates most of your sales team. Instead, most sales staff are going to be more motivated by recognition. Try recognizing high-performing sales team members with a sales leaderboard. It’ll serve to offer your sales team the recognition they want, while also motivating them to make more sales by perhaps appealing to their competitive instincts.

5) Reduce Turnover

Turnover costs your business a lot of money, and if employee engagement and morale are low, it’s costing you a lot more money than it might otherwise. Each time an employee leaves, you’ll spend at least half their salary to replace them – and you might spend as much as twice their salary to find someone else who can do the job.

Employees who feel engaged at work are employees who are likely to stick around for a while. In companies with low-turnover, engaged employees are 59 percent less likely to quit, and even in industries with high turnover, employee engagement can make workers 24 percent less likely to quit. Most people want to feel stable in a job with a good salary, good benefits, and a good company culture. Feeling appreciated and valued in a position can be enough to erase doubts about the company from the minds of many employees, and encourage them to stick around with the company for the long term.

It’s time your company implemented an effective employee recognition program. Give your employees the appreciation they need to do their best work, and they’ll repay you with years of loyal service and commitment to your organization and its goals.