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How to Build a Successful Employee Recognition Program

In this article, you'll find 6 tips to build an employee recognition program.

Employee Recognition Program

According to research, not getting enough recognition is one of the primary reasons for employees to move on to greener pastures. 

Want to have an employee recognition program for your organization that actually works? So how do you go about building one?

1. Define Your Vision

  • First, write down your goals and objectives. Is it to improve the level of employee engagement? Or to build a better company culture?
  • Do research about the benefits that a recognition program can bring to your company. Read all the tips, tricks, and best practices and implement them into your program.
  • It’s important to have a cost estimation (including hidden costs) of recognition programs.

2. Build a Team

Your next step is to build a team to help you implement the program. Appoint a few people who will be responsible for the implementation, managing, and establishment of a recognition program.

When building your team, look for people with the following characteristics:

  • Good knowledge of the program benefits.
  • Positioned as a team leader.
  • Should have an interest in the program.
  • Believes in company values. 

3. Understand the Characteristics of Recognition

Next step is understanding the characteristics of recognition program:

Timely: It is considered a good practice to recognize someone as soon as the deed is done.

Frequent: Don’t wait for a huge milestone or achievement to give recognition. Celebrate small wins.

Specific: Specific recognition helps employees understand exactly which of their efforts contributed to their company’s goal.

Value-based: Think about how a contribution lines up with your company values.

4. Define Clear Program Criteria

If you’re starting a recognition program, you should be clear about what behaviors or actions you’d like to see from recognition programs and how they impact business objectives.

Answer some of the important questions first:

  • What type of behaviors should be rewarded?
  • How the said behaviors should be rewarded?
  • How often should employees be rewarded and appreciated?
  • Who should recognition come from?

5. Hear Employees Voice

Make the process fun! Encourage your employees to better understand the types of rewards they’re most interested in.

Brainstorm ideas with your team. Once you’ve drafted ideas for creative rewards, send a survey to employees and ask everyone to rank the options.

Make employees aware of the program, how to use it, the benefits and encourage them to give their feedback and inputs.

6. Measure Program Effectiveness

Your recognition program impacts many different areas of an organization, including the productivity, business results as well as the brand value. You must measure the effectiveness of the program.

Use data from your recognition program to inform other business decisions. Research if any team or employee is isolated, review how teams are connected, and facilitate collaboration where needed. Once you’ve collected actionable data, make improvements where possible.

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