It’s certainly been a rollicking time for organizations trying to figure out how to deal with the societal and economic changes this persistent pandemic has wrought. Employees, too, have changed: increasingly, a great pay and benefits package is no longer sufficient to attract, motivate, and retain them.

Your job is to figure out what makes a happy workforce because such a workforce results in happy customers, which leads to an ever-favorable bottom line. To seriously pull it off, though, you need rewards strategies that are based on data and analytics. Here are some unique employee rewards ideas.

What is a Rewards Strategy?

It’s basically a rewards approach that’s based on principles that support your company’s aims. Another way to describe it is, a rewards strategy is the design and implementation of reward policies and practices that undergird and promote your organization’s objectives.

What are Employee Rewards Systems?

These are programs established by an organization to reward performance and motivate employees. Keeping in mind that every company is different, here are some types of employee recognition and rewards:

  • Bonuses. These can vary in type and size. There are spot bonuses, for instance, that are so named because they’re given “on the spot” after a goal has been accomplished. These are different from annual and quarterly bonuses, say, in that they’re unplanned.
  • Thank you notes. Written praise shows appreciation, of course, but it also is in-hand proof of an employee’s contribution. Hey, who doesn’t love a note of praise? And doesn’t one make you want to work even harder?
  • Spoken praise. It can be motivating to hear words of praise in the workplace about something you achieved for the company. While verbal praises are usually spontaneous, they can also be part of a structured employee rewards staff recognition program.
  • Equipment. Yes, you read that right. Sometimes a better chair or desk can be a welcome sign of appreciation. Is that computer or monitor up to speed? If upgrades are needed, take care of that for them. The employee will get the message that he or she is valued and appreciated.
  • A great office. As a reward, put together a space for a valued employee that has a terrific view, a swell chair, sweet desk, or any other amenity you can conjure up. That ought to motivate them.
  • Day off. You can surprise your hard-working employee with an unexpected day off to rest, rejuvenate, or have some fun after they’ve completed a project or hit some goal.
  • Flex time. This is increasingly important as we continue to deal with the pandemic. As a reward, you may want to give a prized employee the option of creating a flexible work schedule.
  • Offer outside services. How about bringing in a yoga instructor, Investment counselor, masseuse, or personal trainer, say, to reward teams for reaching a key goal?
  • Personal assistant. Wouldn’t it be cool to reward an employee with a secretary or personal assistant to make their life easier? Try it and see.
  • Reward positivity. Take the time to spotlight positive things employees do and encourage other employees to get in on the act. You can put “kindness moments” experienced during the week in a box and have a drawing, with a gift card in the offering.

As you can see, there’s no shortage of unique employee rewards ideas out there to motivate and retain employees. What’s even better is if you enlist the help of a consultant such as Mercer that can add data and analytics to your rewards program.

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