Research has shown that employee recognition programs that focus on giving credit to workers for their contributions tend to boost employee engagement, which is the emotional committment to one's work and employer.When employee engagement is strong, there is less turnover, so organizations reduce costs when employees leave. Lost productivity, decreases in morale, re-training, recruitment and onboard of new employees can be very expensive.
On the face of it, it would make sense for employers to try to actively appreciate their employees to ensure they stay long enough to add value. However, many employers still have inadequate employee recognition programs, or none at all.
Bersin & Associates study conducted last year found that only about 17% of employees that surveyed said their employers had strong employee recognition programs. Further, the kind of recognition programs tend to be based on granting tenure, as in an academic setting, which encourages employees to stay in their jobs, but does not give them frequent recognition. Actually, they may only receive feedback once a year, if that. Bersin found that tenure-based recognition has no impact on how well an organization performs.
The kinds of employee recognition programs that do work are based in giving credit when and where it is due. In other words, it is tied to specific results and behaviors, not merely to sticking around for ten years and then receiving a Thank You card. If you everhad heard the expression "Doin' my time", it is an expression some employees use to reference the fact that they feel like staying in their job is like serving a prison sentence. Giving such an employee a key-chain or pin would hardly be a great way to appreciate her or him as a person, or the contributions made.
Believe it or not, sharing stories with the organization about the efforts and successes of employees is a good way to recognize and enage employees.
It is also helpful to make it a regular practice and to set up work relationships between managers and employers to make such recognition easy to do. For example, some companies actually allow fellow employees to recognize each other, by providing them with the option to give a co-worker a small cash gift.
Most people know that gratitude goes a long way, but it still is often overlooked. This fact is unfortunate, because research has indicated a regular practice of gratitude can increase happiness, and health.
So, expressing gratitude towards employees regularly might also be a happy and healthy practice for their employers.
Pacific Timesheet software has a module that can be used to give employee recognition by sending an email message through the system.