How to reward employees for their hard work this year

By Henry Brown

To create a top-class workforce, the right treatment and appreciation need to be shown. There’s nothing worse than working hard for a company that gives very little back beyond the monthly pay packet.

For employees, a little bit of appreciation for the work being done can end up going a long way. Not always needing to be financial, having that support and recognition from an employer can certainly be helpful.

With that in mind, for business owners or managers looking at ways to improve the rewards and recognition they give to their employees, here are some helpful tips.

Introduce a new rewards system

To help those businesses that fail to reward their staff due to the workforce size, a new rewards system might come in handy. These platforms are well worth the time spent researching to find the appropriate one needed.

A rewards system such as Kudos is a great one for helping monitor, recognize and reward staff members for their performance in the workplace.

The system can help hand out rewards in a fair and cost-efficient manner rather than most of the rewards going to just one particular person every time.

Offer them a bonus

Bonuses are sometimes given without needing to ask and they should be a reward given out to those that have outperformed their expectations and delivered for the company.

With opportunities for bonuses, employees are likely to work extra hard in order to secure themselves a bonus. When they see other staff members getting a bonus, they’re more than likely to try harder themselves.

Financial bonuses can be a great way to incentivize but they can also come at times when the staff member may really appreciate having it.

Consider the potential bonuses that could be offered out to those who deserve them. Make sure these bonuses are paid promptly once it’s been announced. There’s nothing worse than dangling a financial carrot in front of them and then only paying them the bonus the following year.

Consider a promotion if deserved

Talking of things deserved, a promotion might be on the cards for some staff members. Those that have shown progress within their role and a keen interest in another role that has either come up for recruitment or has the opportunity to be created for them in-house should be considered.

Being able to reward promotions to staff members is a great way to help retain those staff members that will do great things for the business. When it comes to employees, it’s important to try and retain them, rather than just simply letting them go on to explore greener pastures.

Look at those who deserve a promotion and look to see if there’s any possibility that this can be offered now or sometime in the near future.

Have a celebration

Celebrations are a fantastic way of saying a big thank you to employees that have worked hard to provide results for the business. It might be worthwhile to look at a celebratory event that can offer an all-expense paid experience.

This could be an end-of-year award celebration in the form of an awards show or perhaps a trip abroad or a company away day somewhere. These trips away can also double up as team-building days so a good way of killing two birds with one stone!

Awards shows can be a great way of bringing the entire workforce together and having a night to celebrate multiple staff members within the organization.

This is particularly useful for those companies that might be made up of more than one hundred staff. Saying that they’d work for more intimate workforce numbers too.=

Offer paid time off

There’s nothing quite like getting time off work and even better when you’re getting paid for it. This is something that many staff members are likely to be appreciative of when it’s offered.

It can be a suitable alternative for businesses that might not be flushed with cash to offer bonuses and promotions left, right, and center.

Instead, offering one or two days of paid time off every now and then is a great way of rewarding staff members. Remember how much paid time off you’re dishing out though as you don’t want to suddenly one week that the business has no staff in or available because they’re all off!

Treat them to a work lunch

What’s the best way to many people’s hearts? Food! A love of food and drink could be just the type of reward that would go down very well for those that deserve a little treat every now and then.

It could be a quarterly work lunch to celebrate a milestone achieved during that business quarter or it could be an annual lunch to treat the department or individual to a delicious evening of food and drink.

Work lunches are often few and far between, typically reserved for clients but why not give the same treatment to employees who’ve worked hard to bring in the results this year?

Employee competitions

In the case where you’ve got multiple staff members that are all due some form of recognition, why not create a bit of healthy competition? Employee competitions are a great way to encourage a bit of fun and a little extra work to earn that all-important reward.

For example, it might be that you allocate certain tasks for employees to complete, and whoever gets them done to the best standard will receive a big reward. You might want to split a variety of prizes and rank employees from 1st place to 3rd.

Regardless of who wins what, it’s a great way of dishing out rewards in a fun and enjoyable way for all involved. It also creates a bit of competition between staff members.

Employee recognition and offering rewards are a great way to give back to staff that goes above and beyond for the organization. It can be a wonderful way to show appreciation back as a business.


Henry Brown is an online marketing executive. When he isn’t talking shop, he’s roaming the streets of London, uncovering the extra-ordinary in the ordinary.

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