19 October, 2020
Redefining Employee Recognition during COVID-19
COVID-19 has changed the workplace as we know it. Everyone is still coming to terms with the uncertainties it has brought along with it- financial, social and emotional. As organizations repair and rebuild their revenue streams after being forced to undertake stringent cost cutting measures, they need to retain and reward the people who have stuck by. This is important from a business continuity perspective not just during but beyond the pandemic. An effective employee rewards and recognition program is thus an important requirement for organizations in the recovery phase.
There are powerful statistics to show the impact of having no formal recognition program in place, especially during a crisis- 64% employees claim that employee recognition is needed even more during remote work. Engagement and retention rates aside, it is morally binding for organizations with frontline workers like health professionals, caregivers, social workers, logistics and shipping staff as well as factory and retail store workers to continually show gratitude for their service and sacrifice. Moreover, newly remote employees battling the stressors of isolation and on-site workers anxiously navigating public spaces need an extra show of solidarity and appreciation in order to keep them going.
Employee Recognition need not be expensive, especially with employee appreciation tools that help create a personal connection through a usable digital interface. Organizations need to get creative when it comes to adapting virtual recognition practices to adapt to the constantly evolving situations. Some proven digital features that boost appreciation are listed below:
1. Media Messages:
Organizations can make recognitions more heartfelt and personal by incorporating video and audio-based messages that can be seamlessly exchanged. Additionally, peers can upload pictures the recognition being given and can even select a personalized reward to disburse. These small steps go a long way in compensating for the lack of face-to-face interaction.
2. Public Recognition:
Celebrating employee wins through formal communication channels like collaboration and employee recognition platforms is essential to give an employee greater visibility within the firm, thus increasing brand loyalty by creating an emotional stamp. Moreover, sharing of recognitions through third-party social media channels is known to boost employee self-esteem and performance.
3. Mobile Accessibility:
Having a mobile-first recognition solution is essential for workers who are constantly on the road or lack access to mature technical devices. In fact, mobile users give recognition at an average of 98% more than their non-mobile user counterparts.
4. Physical Gifts
As helpful as it is to have the world of technology at our disposal, there is nothing as tangible as a physical gift from our employer to lift our spirits- a gourmet food box for example, along with branded cutlery. With a little focus on packaging and home-based delivery, organizations can help create a real, physical connection through such gifts, and even tie them to events such as launches, townhalls or virtual festivals.
As we employ various methods to tackle employee stress and recognize their efforts, we need to adapt recognition to the current context, celebrating human beings as whole individuals having individual personalities and animated personal lives. A little bit of personalization goes a long way to achieve a higher RoI on your total rewards and recognition program.