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While meaningful benefits and steady financial support are essential in any job, we know that people also want to be valued and appreciated in the workplace. Sadly, many employees don't get that simple 'thank you' day-to-day.

Cost of living pressures, burnout and stress are pushing many employees to look to greener pastures, ones with higher salaries, better benefits and greater recognition.

In our recent report, The Australian Talent & Engagement Report, one in three employees say they are looking or intend to look for work in the next year. Additionally, 70% of employers are concerned about employees quitting.

During the silly season, many companies ramp up their rewards without any of the tech or support that could make it a lot easier. 

At the same time, business and HR leaders all over the country are also facing the need to not only reduce their administration costs, but also maximise the limited time and resources of HR teams. 

Traditional award systems lack efficiency

efficiency conceptWhile many companies strive to create a culture of recognition, traditional awards methods no longer work. HR departments struggle to find the perfect reward system; one that provides each employee with a tailored reward experience and also streamlines and simplifies tracking, budgeting and reporting. 

Employees now seek more specific rewards featuring flexibility, fairer pay or another form of meaningful recognition rather than a trophy or gift.

So, how can you provide an impactful end-of-year reward experience that makes your people feel truly valued and supports their financial wellbeing, without the administrative burden?

1. Schedule awards in advance

Timing is everything! Sending awards too late decreases the impact of the recognition moment and leaves employees feeling unseen.

Through the use of Scheduled Recognition, you’ll never miss a milestone moment or holiday bonus, which ensures consistency across departments and eliminates any lateness or forgetfulness.

By introducing a system that readily schedules awards and plans ahead of any key milestones and events, you can be rest assured the right moment is recognised with the right reward.

2. Be immediate with rewards

A reward should always be memorable, personal and delivered as close as possible to the time of the success, strengthening the connection between HR, the employee's action and the company’s appreciation of their hard work.

Reward Gateway asked our people what the optimal redemption experience would entail, and we found that the following aspects are the most important to consider:

Choice in reward
Transparency in costs
Personalisation of reward choices

InstantAwards™ is a monetary recognition tool that allows you to reward employees in a relevant and timely way. The focus is on personalising the experience of receiving an award, making the reward interesting and suited to each individual. Organisations can choose to have different tiers for the awards, and even set up budgets for managers throughout the company – ensuring the delivery of the reward is immediate and transparent.

In addition to InstantAwards™, our 'On the Spot' recognition feature empowers managers to present in-person recognition (either monetary or non-monetary) to frontline employees, such as those in retail or hospitality – making it easier to shine a spotlight on hard work in the moment. With the employee recognition platform, employers can generate unique award codes that can be printed on individual thank you cards, certificates or another medium of their choice.

Employees can then choose to redeem all awards from hundreds of e-Gift cards, directly from Amazon or from their company’s custom awards offerings – giving employers greater oversight and control over the entire process, from creation to budgeting to redemption.

3. Leverage the power of bulk awards

Remember when people would mail out physical copies of gift cards? Needless to say, this was pretty costly and time-consuming. 

Rewards used to be manually organised in spreadsheets and calendars. Now many organisations use tech and automation to eliminate the burden of manual awarding. This can be done on a set schedule or time but rewards can also be handled more quickly and efficiently through bulking awards.

Here at RG, we understand that when it comes to sending awards en masse to your people, it works best (and makes the biggest impact) when the process is as swift and seamless as possible.

Our platform enables HR leaders to skip the 'middleman' in the file upload process and save precious time, while making sure all employees receive their awards in a timely manner. Employers can set as many awards on their programs as they like and incorporate ideas from their employees.

Some common ones we’ve seen are for year-end bonuses, holiday gifts and boosting morale during tough times. We shared some great ideas in our recent webinar; Enhance Your EVP With Impactful Benefits & Rewards to Support Your People This Festive Season.

4. Give your people flexibility when choosing rewards

Give your people the gift of choice this festive season. 

Although a general reward is well-intended, it doesn’t necessarily work for every employee as it can fail to offer personalisation and specific recognition. Employees seek flexibility and choice when it comes to redeeming a reward, and the idea of choice is becoming more popular. 

01 Slalom-Marketplace_AU (1)

The Reward Gateway Marketplace brings employees the ultimate choice in how they redeem their rewards, through experiences, travel, fashion, groceries and more. Our Marketplace offers an extensive selection of categories of rewards in an easy-to-use hub that offers hundreds of different eCards, a direct integration with Amazon’s catalogue and Prime shipping options and the ability to donate rewards to charity.

Taking it one step further, our custom awards allow you to create and offer one-of-a-kind rewards for memorable and meaningful moments. Imagine exclusive one-of-a-kind company awards such as lunch with the CEO or additional paid days off. The possibilities are endless – you can even involve your employees and ask for their opinions on what awards to create.

examples of rewards

What motivates one employee might not motivate another, your employees are diverse and sit across a variety of life stages. Giving them the flexibility to choose their own rewards ensures that your rewards are impactful and appreciated. 

Even if you start tackling just one of these four ways to reduce your administrative burden, you’ll be on the path to delivering a better experience (and a better reward system) for your people. 

When you focus on evolving the methods of reward and recognition to meet the expectations for your modern workforce, you’ll start moving the needle on employee engagement. You’ll also stand out as an employer of choice, helping to attract, engage and retain top talent in a tight talent market.

What’s more, sending your Christmas or end-of-year rewards as early as possible means your employees can make the most of retailer sale events, such as Black Friday, to make their limited budgets go further. 

If you’d like to learn more about automating your reward and recognition, talk to your Client Success Manager or get in touch with one of our Engagement Consultants.

Talk to an Engagement Consultant »

Kameel Martin

Kameel Martin is a Senior Client Success Manager for a wide range of businesses. She always has communications and marketing on her mind, and loves to share knowledge with anyone interested in improving employee engagement!

Senior Client Success Manager

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