3 Types of Employee Recognition to Increase Retention

Posted December 30, 2017

It's well known that employee recognition programs can lead to better employee retention. However, not all recognition programs produce the same results.

For companies to get significant return on their investment, they need a recognition program that is targeted, invests in employees and encourages a culture of acknowledgement throughout the entire organization.

Individual recognition

Recognizing employees' best work doesn't have to take much effort. It can be as simple as publicly acknowledging a contribution or sending a personal note. It is essential that positive feedback is in-the-moment, authentic and specific, in order to make it impactful for the employee.

It's also important that upper-level management and executives get in on the act. According to a 2016 Gallup survey, 28 percent of employees surveyed said the most memorable recognition comes from a direct supervisor, while 24 percent said it came from an upper-level executive or CEO.

Of course, individual recognition can also take the form of a bonus, extra vacation day or promotion. Whatever it is, the form of recognition should be appropriate in scale to the person’s achievement.

Invest in employees

A highly effective way to recognize employees and lower turnover is to invest in them through training, coaching and career development.

Some of the best managed companies in the world actively coach their employees on both a day-to-day and long-term basis. Managers at these companies focus on employee strengths and reinforce what employees are doing right each day. The result is a culture that employees find supportive and inspiring.

Many companies also show they recognize the contributions of their employees by investing in their work environment and careers. People feel valued when their employer invests in equipment, facilities and amenities. Employees are also much less likely to leave an employer who supports their efforts to gain new skills and expand their careers.

Peer-to-peer recognition

Employee recognition doesn't have to be a top-down affair. Many companies have found that peer-to-peer recognition programs are highly effective.

When designing a peer-to-peer recognition program, it's important to involve your employees. The program is more likely to take hold if employees have ownership from the get-go.

It's also important that a peer-recognition program is equal opportunity, meaning every employee should have an equal shot at getting recognized. If only the top performers are getting recognition, the steady, average worker will start to feel disconnected from the program.

A peer-to-peer recognition program should also be designed to produce regular gratification. If compliments pile up but employees don’t receive any material acknowledgement, like a bonus or prize giveaway, the program will quickly lose steam.

Some common examples of peer recognition programs include prize raffles for recognized employees and prizes given to those who earn the most kudos from their fellow employees.

At Ambassador Personnel, we support all employee programs put forward by our client companies and can even provide feedback in programs based on our experience. Please contact us today to find out more about how working with a full-service staffing firm can help your organization.