The Best Rewards Systems for Employees

Many managers and business owners are divided into two major groups: those who don’t believe in rewarding their employees and those who know the importance of giving rewards but don’t know where to start. If you belong to the first group, you have to realize that recognizing your staff’s efforts is important if you want to achieve business success.

For one thing, it helps you motivate your people to work harder and do their best every day, which leads to higher productivity and efficiency rates. It also fosters employee loyalty, which paves the way to lower staff turnover rates, a better company culture, and a more impressive corporate image. If you belong to the second group, don’t worry since creating a great reward system isn’t as difficult as it seems. You can get started by using the tips below.

Four Important Aspects of Employee Reward Systems

It can be tempting to just give monetary rewards and be done with it, but don’t give in to the temptation. Remember that cash doesn’t always solve every problem so, instead of throwing money at everything, take note of these four important factors and build your rewards system around them.

1. Compensation
You probably already are familiar with this aspect since you’re already compensating your staff with wages in exchange for their hard work. But don’t just stop there; instead, take a close look at the salaries you give and determine if they’re fair and just. Doing these is important to ensure you’re not underpaying your employees, which almost always results to low job satisfaction and ultimately pushes people to search for greener pastures.

2. Benefits
While compensation is a “must-have” and has strict legal rules and regulations that you should follow, benefits are a broader aspect that doesn’t have an exact formula for you to follow. It’s up to you to create a great benefits package that’s on par with your competitors’ and will pique the interest of your employees.

3. Recognition
It’s easy to stop at giving great compensation and benefits, but it shouldn’t end there. If you want to boost your staff’s morale, you need to recognize their achievements and hard work in front of their peers. It’s a great way to make your employees feel good about themselves and encourage them to become better workers.

4. Appreciation
Many entrepreneurs think that they don’t need to show their appreciation to their staff. After all, they already give them great salaries and fantastic benefits package; aren’t these enough?

The short answer is “No”. As mentioned above, money doesn’t always solve everything. If you want your employees to know that they’re doing great and encourage them to keep up the good work, you need to explicitly say it to them, either through written or spoken communication. It won’t take up a lot of your time, but it will have a huge impact on your staff and their overall performance.

Top Employee Reward Strategies

After mulling over the four important factors above, you’re probably ready to start crafting an employee rewards system that will bring out the best in your people and promote the behaviors and attitudes that you’d like to encourage. There are lots of strategies available nowadays, and you can tailor each of them to suit your company culture as well as your budget. If you need help getting started, here are a few tips you can use:

Saying a “Thank You”in a personal way.
This is the cheapest but one of the most effective things you can do. By personally expressing your appreciation to your staff, you’ll let them know that you care about each of them and that you truly are grateful for everything they do for the company. You can stop by the desks of those who are performing well, say your thanks, and engage them in a quick chat; if you’re too busy or are a bit shy, you can opt to write a handwritten “Thank You” note.

Giving the gift of time.
If there’s one thing that your staff doesn’t have enough of, it’s probably time. Because of this, you can use time as a way to reward your employees for their achievements. For instance, if your team reaches their quota for the month or quarter, you can allow them to have a flexible schedule. This hits two birds with one stone: you’ll still have workers who work full shifts, while your employees can have the chance to shift their schedules around and go to doctors’ appointments or attend parent-teachers meetings.

If you don’t have numerous deadlines looming in the horizon, you might even give top performers an extra vacation day. This will surely be appreciated by your staff, who most likely are constantly on the go and don’t get enough R&R.

Surprising them with “experience” gifts.
There’s nothing wrong with giving material rewards like watches, mugs, and paperweights, but you have to admit that they’re kind of stale and overused. If you’re willing to try something new, why not give experiential rewards? If your top salesman is a coffee lover, for instance, give him a gift card to his favorite coffee shop. If your Employee of the Year awardee likes a certain band, surprise him with a ticket to his favorite group’s concert. It’s a great way to make employee rewards more personal and ensure that your staff will truly appreciate the rewards they receive.

Organizing group outings.
Experiential rewards don’t always have to be given to individuals since you can also use them to reward your entire staff. This is particularly true when you set goals that everyone should meet as a group, not as individual workers. The best part about giving team experiences as a reward is that it can also become a team building event, giving your employees the chance to unwind while building camaraderie.

There are different group outings you can choose from, so pick something that your staff will like. If many of them love the beach, schedule a weekend beach getaway. If a lot of them love sports or outdoor adventures, plan a cycling trip to a nearby winery or scenic bike route.

Final Note

Having a strong employee rewards system in place is important since it helps you build a stronger workforce and puts you a step closer towards long-term success. Fortunately, creating one isn’t difficult, and you can start formulating a unique system for your business by using the tips above.