Are your company rewards and recognition systems keeping up with the times?

by | Mar 28, 2023 | Human Resources

Why do we need rewards in the workplace?
An employee rewards and recognition program are key to employee engagement, making your employees feel valued and recognizing their hard work. Engaged employees feel a sense of purpose at work that creates extra energy and commitment — employee engagement is also directly tied to well-being. And we know that the impact is real. When you invest in an employee’s well-being — their emotional, financial, physical, and work well-being — they invest back in the company. 

The key to a successful employee rewards and recognition program
The not-so-magic formula of improving employee engagement is knowing how to recognize and reward employees, especially your high-performers. The goal is to celebrate employees for their achievements, hard work or a job well done. Not every employee reward and recognition program will be the same — it’s about focusing on meaningful employee appreciation. (P.S. This doesn’t necessarily mean handing out cash.)

Here are 10 creative ways to reward employees:

  1. Employee pitch night – employees crave recognition from company leadership.
  2. Get them something from their Takealot wish list – we all have one.
  3. Establish a professional development budget – your employee might one to go to a seminar but just scrolls pass because of the price ticket.   
  4. Start a competition – have a prize wheel and the one who hits target first can spin the wheel.
  5. Movie tickets – throw in some pop corn.
  6. Spa day or personal chef – it will help take the stress away.  
  7. A ‘’passion pass’’ – allow them time to follow their passion.  Give them an hour no matter if it is work related or not.  Some might read others might go skateboarding. 
  8. Secret slow clap – everyone appreciates a good slow clap that ends in a standing ovation.
  9. The chair they deserve – your employee might be sitting the whole day, help them to be comfortable.  We are talking memory foam, modernly designed etc.
  10. Naptime – set up a nap area where employees can hide away.

 We can carry on, meal delivery for a week, new and improved job titles, music lessons etc.    

Perhaps the conclusion to be gained from this is that monetary rewards alone are insufficient to motivate employees. Other factors such as giving greater recognition and greater responsibility may be equally important, for example giving praise at company meetings, promoting staff, and involving staff more in decision making.

Tips for implementing an effective reward system
Here are some tips you can use to implement a reward system in your workplace:

  • Ask your team members: If you’re not sure what your employees would like, ask them. Hearing directly from employees about what motivates them can help you select the type of system to implement.
  • Make the rewards realistic: It’s helpful to design a realistic reward system for employees to sustain the company. For example, during a busy season, you might offer a R 500 increase to an employee’s check at the end of a pay period rather than promising them a day off.
  • Create group rewards: If the organization you work for has the means, consider creating a group rewards system. This can involve dividing your team into smaller task groups and rewarding the group that produces the best work.
  • Request feedback: Once you’ve had the rewards system in place for a certain amount of time, ask your team member their opinions about it. Use their feedback to make minor adjustments as needed.
  • Change the rewards: It may help to keep team members interested and motivated if you rotate the type of reward system you’re using, either weekly, monthly, or yearly. For example, you might replace your weekly recognition system with a monetary reward around the holidays as extra motivation.

Many of the performance-related reward schemes depend on the performance of the employees. As such, the employees’ performance must be assessed. Employees will be assessed on a regular basis, for example once a week or month.

Let us help you implement a reward system, customized to your companies’ needs by contacting us today on or call us on 087 135 0780.