Human Capital Management Blog

Strategies for HCM Professionals

The rewarding appeal of employee recognition

employee recognitionThere are many factors that come into play when it comes to the satisfaction and engagement of employees. Given the competitive nature of today’s job market, human capital management professionals must develop cutting-edge and innovative strategies for retaining top performers. High turnover rates can cost companies big because, on top of the expense that goes into recruiting, replacing and training new hires, it can also lead to a lag in productivity.

Additionally, making sure workers are engaged and happy in their roles boosts the overall performance of businesses, positively influences the corporate culture and aids in creating a healthier environment. But, contrary to common assumption, there are other ways aside from compensation and benefits that employers can offer to make their workers feel more comfortable, involved and satisfied at work.

In fact, studies have shown that something as simple as being recognized by their bosses for their hard work can be a big motivator and result in them feeling more appreciative and loyal to their employers. So it is surprising to learn that a vast amount of businesses aren’t leveraging this advantageous opportunity to gain a competitive edge.

Realizing the need for recognition
Research recently conducted by Gallup revealed that just one-third of U.S. employees feel that they have been recognized or praised for a job well-done over the course of a week. And it’s certainly not difficult to see why failing to have their dedication, time or work noticed, let alone acknowledged, could be a little disheartening. People want to be reassured that the work they do matters and that their roles have meaning and purpose. Perhaps this is why the study also found that the workers who don’t feel like they are receiving the appraisal or recognition they deserve are twice as likely to express a desire to quit their jobs within the year.

By focusing on recognition, employers are able to instill in their workers a sense of accomplishment. And the best part is that it can cost next to nothing for employers. The benefits are endless:

  • Lower employee turnover rates
  • Increased levels of engagement
  • Improved productivity and performance
  • Better company loyalty

Tips for effective employee recognition
According to Gallup, there are certain types of recognition that have the greatest effect. Because just as important as HCM professionals making sure they are acknowledging and recognizing employees, is the logistics of how they go about it.

  • Who: Although it is better to make sure someone does the recognizing than no one, Gallup found that employees actually find certain appraisal more memorable when it comes from certain people. They said the recognition was most meaningful when it came from their manager (28 percent) or CEO (24 percent), followed by their manager’s manager (12 percent), a customer (10 percent) and their coworkers (9 percent).
  • When: Findings from Gallup’s analysis indicated that employee feedback should be given as frequently as possible or, at the very least, once a week. Giving that feedback immediately may also be helpful because the worker will likely create a stronger association between the achievement and reward.
  • Where: The good news is that employees ranked both public and private settings as a preferable choice to receive recognition or praise. So whether it is done in a one-to-one meeting or through a company-wide announcement, the real value is in having it be heard.

One of the most important yet challenging aspects of giving employee recognition can be in how. As the workforce becomes more mobile, an increasing number of employees are working remotely. And while the praise should be given in-person, it doesn’t have to be. By leveraging the right HCM solution, employers can make it easier for managers to track, recognize and reward the hard work and accomplishments of employees.

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