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Anniversaries are a funny time. I’ve been the office manager at Reward Gateway’s London headquarters for a year now. I might not remember the events of my first day, but I do remember my very first task.

The task, on paper, seemed simple: Celebrate employee birthdays. 

Sure, that’s easy, I thought. I’ll just get a cake and stash some candles. We can gather round some people to sing happy birthday, they’ll make a wish and we’ll have checked that off.

But, always one to push the boundaries, I wanted to think outside the box and do something special, that would make everyone in the office — the globe, even — recognise that employee’s special day.

And very quickly it hit me. I had failed to consider the fact that I sat in front of a huge video wall, much like the BBC newsreader.


I looked at my task again:

  • Access our employee database.
  • Locate all employee birthdays and copy them to my calendar.
  • Access our employee photo library.
  • Get creative with Keynote/Photoshop and produce a personalised birthday message.

Since that first day, I’ve used these birthday messages as a perfect opportunity to be creative, and also as a unique way of bringing delight and unexpected pleasure to others.* It has also helped me get to know all of the Reward Gateway employees. When I’m having a conversation and asking questions, ultimately I’m getting to know you and collecting information, figuring out what your likes and dislikes are and what are the things that bring you joy. Initially my efforts were a bit basic but i am happy to report that I have really honed my skills and this task still brings me joy on a daily basis.

* An actual line from my Insights report

Take a look at some of my recent billboards:



Improving employee engagement, one birthday “candle” at a time

It seemed so simple: Put up a birthday message, and go about your day. But instead, what’s happened is that I’ve begun to use our video wall as my own employee recognition tactic, using it to wish people an anniversary, a happy birthday, wedding wishes or even as a fond farewell to employees moving across the pond. I’ve become somewhat of a Keynote master with these animated video stories to tell tales of our people, and use the video wall to delight our customers — in this case, both our employees and our clients. Take a look at some of my top moments:


Prospects or candidates that come into our London office (and others, as the other office managers are quickly giving me a run for my money on how to use video walls!) instantly get a look inside at what it’s like to work at Reward Gateway. By using the video wall to improve our Employee Value Proposition and as a creative way to recognise my fellow workers, I’ve helped boost employee engagement at our own organisation.

Looking for more ways to improve employee engagement at your company? We've got dozens, even hundreds, of ideas in our Resource Library. Go ahead, check it out...

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Will Elliott

Will Elliott is an Experience Manager at Reward Gateway, using the video wall as his creative muse to spread good cheer around the whole office.

Experience Manager

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