The Power of Employee Recognition Programs in Early-Stage Tech Startups
Early-stage technology startups are known for their fast-paced and dynamic work environments. The drive to innovate, coupled with limited resources, often leads to intense workloads and high-pressure situations. In such an atmosphere, it becomes crucial to recognize and appreciate the efforts of employees who are the backbone of these companies.
Employee recognition programs play a vital role in fostering a positive work culture and motivating teams to achieve their full potential. In this blog post, we will explore the importance of implementing employee recognition programs in early-stage tech startups and highlight some tangible benefits they can bring.
Fostering a Culture of Appreciation:
By implementing an employee recognition program, early-stage tech startups can foster a culture of appreciation and gratitude. Recognizing and acknowledging the efforts and achievements of employees instills a sense of pride and satisfaction and helps them feel valued. And when employees feel valued, they become more engaged, productive, and committed to the success of the company. This positive cycle leads to increased motivation, which in turn drives innovation and growth.
Example Benefit: A software development startup launched a peer-to-peer recognition program where employees could nominate their colleagues for outstanding contributions. This led to a significant rise in employee morale and teamwork, with individuals feeling recognized for their hard work and motivated to deliver exceptional results.
Retaining Top Talent:
Early-stage tech startups face fierce competition in attracting and retaining top talent. Employee recognition programs can serve as a powerful tool to retain valuable employees. Recognizing and acknowledging their achievements not only creates a sense of loyalty but also strengthens their connection to the company's mission and vision. When employees feel appreciated and recognized for their contributions, they are more likely to stay committed to the organization, reducing turnover rates and the associated costs of hiring and training new employees.
Example Benefit: A data analytics startup implemented an "Employee of the Month" program, showcasing outstanding individuals who had made a notable impact on the company's success. This recognition program not only motivated employees to strive for excellence but also contributed to a lower turnover rate and increased loyalty within the organization.
Boosting Innovation and Creativity:
Early-stage tech startups thrive on innovation and out-of-the-box thinking. Employee recognition programs can serve as catalysts for creativity and innovation by encouraging employees to take risks and share their innovative ideas without fear of failure. Recognizing and celebrating such contributions not only inspires others but also fosters a culture of continuous learning and improvement. This is especially true for very early-stage startups in which employees wear multiple hats and may be required to work outside of a defined job description.
Example Benefit: A virtual reality startup introduced a "Bright Ideas" program, encouraging employees to share their innovative concepts for product improvement. The best ideas were recognized and awarded, resulting in a surge of creative suggestions and improved product development processes.
Enhancing Team Collaboration and Communication:
Strong teamwork and effective communication are vital for the success of any early-stage tech startup. Employee recognition programs can create opportunities for employees to interact, collaborate, and celebrate each other's achievements. Moreover, recognition programs can be designed to foster and reward collaborative efforts. This enhances cross-functional collaboration, strengthens relationships, and improves overall communication within the organization.
Example Benefit: A mobile app development startup introduced a quarterly team recognition event where employees from different departments were acknowledged for their collaborative efforts and achievements. This not only fostered a stronger sense of unity but also improved interdepartmental communication and coordination.
While early-stage tech startups face numerous challenges, the implementation of well-designed employee recognition programs should not be overlooked. By fostering a culture of appreciation, such programs have the power to boost employee morale, enhance retention rates, drive innovation, and improve teamwork. By investing in employee recognition, startups lay a solid foundation for long-term success and growth.
Qarrot provides a cost-effective solution for any size of business. Whether you have 10 employees or thousands, our recognition software lets you design a program based on your business objectives as well as your budget. And with a growing number of integrations, including Slack and Microsoft Teams, it’s easy for just about any company to launch an employee recognition program within days, not weeks or months. Request a demo with Qarrot today!
5 Authentic Employee Appreciation Ideas, Backed By Data
Employee appreciation is vital. It fosters trust between employees and management, inspires teams to increase productivity, and reduces turnover by ensuring employees feel valued. But inauthentic appreciation accomplishes none of this.
Think about it. If your boss came up to you the day after implementing a new appreciation program and said kind words with behavior and body language that conveyed anything but gratitude, how would you feel? Without authenticity, appreciation can have the opposite effect.
Showing authentic gratitude doesn’t have to be difficult or complicated. In this post, we’re covering 5 simple ways to show your employees authentic appreciation (and why you should).
Why authentic employee appreciation matters
A 2022 Gallup report shows that recognition has the most impact when it’s:
- Fulfilling employees’ expectations and needs
- Embedded in the culture
Despite their demonstrated importance, data shows recognition is lacking in these five areas. Only 23% of employees strongly feel they receive the right amount of recognition for the work they do. One-third of employees strongly feel the recognition they receive is authentic. One quarter feel it is given equitably. 19% feel it is embedded in their company culture, and just 10% report being asked about their preferences for receiving recognition.
Reports show that employees who receive effective recognition are:
- 73% less likely to experience burnout “always” or “very often”
- 56% less likely to keep an eye on job boards
- 5 times more likely to feel connected to their company culture
- 4 times as likely to be engaged at work
- 5 times as likely to see a path to growth within the organization
- 4 times as likely to recommend the organization to friends and family
And, most shockingly, these employees are 44% more likely to report “thriving” in their life overall.
1. Edible empathy
Food brings people together. Giving employees the go-ahead to group order whatever they want for lunch one day might check that box on paper, but it lacks the empathy component that makes sharing a meal together so powerful.
Instead, spend time getting to know your employees while scheduling the lunch. Find out what they like. Be considerate of dietary restrictions, whether they’re religious, medical, or simply a choice.
Pick a location that makes for easy conversation. That could be in a restaurant or in the workspace. In an ideal world, find a round table in a spot quiet enough so that everyone can hear each other, but not so quiet that people will be hesitant to speak freely.
Once everyone is comfortable, strike up a genuine conversation. It doesn’t have to be wholly centered around work. While this is a good time to discuss what is and isn’t working within the team, chatting with your team about their unique interests and sharing your own nurtures the empathetic connection that affirms the genuineness of the gesture.
2. Let feedback go both ways
Your employees need your support just as much as you need theirs. When you sit down to review performance, prompt them to do the same. When you tell them what to improve, ask them what you can do to help them get there. This turns what could be perceived as a scolding session into a productive, two-way conversation.
Not all employees will feel comfortable sharing honest feedback face-to-face. This could be due to sensitive subject matter or a byproduct of their personality. Create a system for employees to submit anonymous feedback, both on a macro and micro level. Ensuring the system is actually anonymous builds trust between you and your team.
Giving employees a vehicle to share their thoughts and ideas about the organization’s leadership, opportunities, direction, etc. shows not only that you want their voices to be heard, but also that you value the opinions they share.
3. Create a culture of appreciation through peer recognition
Peer recognition is almost as important as recognition from leadership. Employees recognized by peers just a few times a year (or less) are 3 times as likely to be actively disengaged, 39% more likely to plan on leaving the organization within one year, and 24% more likely to be struggling. For those recognized just a few times by leadership, the numbers increase to 5 times, 74%, and 27%, respectively.
When you don’t cultivate a culture of appreciation, the occasional reward or review sticks out like a sore thumb. This is part of the reason why stock appreciation messages don’t land. If words of appreciation and encouragement aren’t heard in the office on a regular basis, they will seem forced. To the ones being recognized, it could feel like you just pressed 5 a bunch of times on a customer service survey. Inauthentic and meaningless. That’s the opposite of what you want.
Create a culture where recognition from both leadership and peers is the norm, and the words of appreciation will feel natural. If recognition isn’t filling an annual requirement, employees will open their ears and actually absorb what you have to say as truth.
4. Stay consistent
Fairness is another crucial component of authentic appreciation. When you focus your recognition on one employee and short another with the same performance level, the employee experience takes a big hit. After all, fairness is a basic human need.
Only 26% of employees report receiving similar amounts of recognition as peers with similar performance levels. This number drops significantly for Black (19%) and Hispanic (21%) employees. The percentage of employees who report receiving the right amount of recognition and authentic recognition follow the same racial pattern.
Unless you want unconscious bias to derail your DE&I efforts, repel talent, and hurt BIPOC team members, equity needs to become a serious priority.
If the tips were ranked, this one would be near the top. Personalization is vital to showing authentic appreciation. Genuine recognition requires empathy. Managers have to consider what makes their employees feel appreciated as individuals. This won’t be the same for everyone. Some people prefer public recognition, while others prefer to be recognized in private.
Recognition feels more authentic when it is tied to a clear reason. Some people prefer action-based rewards or spontaneous appreciation in the moment. Spontaneous words of appreciation are easy to personalize– when you observe an employee performing well in the moment, thank them for that specific action either via email or out loud, depending on their privacy preferences.
Only 10% of employees report being asked how they’d like to be recognized. Asking your employees what will make them feel the most appreciated is the simplest and most effective way to ensure your recognition meets the needs of every individual employee. In doing so, you prioritize equity, combat bias, and improve the effectiveness of your employee appreciation program as a whole.
29% of surveyed employees report a preference for private recognition, with 7% preferring to be appreciated in public. Then, there’s the middle ground. Many employees are comfortable with receiving technology-mediated recognition visible by all team members, even if they dislike public displays of recognition.
Some employees place more value on monetary rewards than verbal appreciation. However, monetary rewards alone often miss the mark and appear ingenuine. Rewards should always be paired with a personalized message that resonates with the awardee.
The impact of authentic employee appreciation
Effective recognition doesn’t just improve outcomes within the organization– it has the power to improve your employees’ quality of life outside the office. What’s more authentic than creating a recognition program that helps employees live happier, more fulfilled lives?
Authentic recognition is even more impactful for Black and Hispanic employees facing racial bias. Black employees who receive authentic recognition are 79% more likely to be thriving, and Hispanic employees fall close behind at 69%. Black employees are also more likely to recommend the organization and see an internal path to growth.
Authentic employee appreciation improves business outcomes, helps employees thrive in and out of work, and promotes equity within the organization.
Building a business case for employee recognition
When you’re recognized for achieving a goal, it feels pretty good, doesn’t it? You feel supported, valued, and appreciated. Most importantly, you get that extra dose of encouragement and want to accomplish more.
Increasingly, leadership practices emphasize the role recognition plays in keeping employees engaged and working at their best. Despite this, many HR departments continue to struggle with how to justify investing in recognition programs for their people. Besides the business case, organizations aiming to adopt employee recognition need to figure out what kind of program or initiatives will best suit their objectives. And once decided, implement and communicate the program throughout the organization. We get it, it’s not a walk in the park.
That’s why we’ve provided an overview of those practices and program features we believe drive the best results as well as a number of compelling statistics to power your business case.
At the end, we’ve also included a link to our own FREE business case template.
Traditional vs. ‘new wave’ employee recognition
The traditional idea of employee recognition may conjure up the classic ‘employee of the month’ - a manager recites the same speech and recognizes one of a handful of top performers each month. The broader team is often left uninspired, and the discussion of employee engagement is put on the back burner for another month.
Traditional methods of rewards and recognition - which travels vertically through an organization - often lack inclusion and real motivation. Even worse, it risks coming across as forced, fake, or inauthentic. In order for recognition and rewards to be truly impactful for your organization, that narrative needs to change. Rather, a robust process that fosters a collective experience and leaves team members feeling both supported and empowered.
Peer-to-peer recognition, while still a relatively new concept to the employee engagement world, is already making waves. It challenges the one-way, traditional sense of recognition and the idea that cash incentives are the only rewards that drive results. In fact, peer-to-peer is 35.7% more likely to have a positive financial influence than manager-only recognition. We’ll dive deeper into peer-to-peer recognition shortly.
The cost and threat of poor employee engagement
It can be difficult to pin down an exact ROI on the implementation of employee rewards and recognition programs given the variety of challenges faced by organizations. However, the influence employee appreciation has on issues like retention, loyalty, productivity, and work culture is indisputable. And the numbers don’t lie:
Specific selling features
So, your organization is interested in the idea of a recognition and rewards program and you’re leaning towards something innovative, easy, and fun. But, you’re not sure what program design to put forward with your business case. Let’s get into the nitty-gritty of things and explore the specific features and the objectives they support:
Drive results with objective-driven campaigns
Recognition programs don’t just “motivate” employees - they inspire employees to hit specific targets or KPIs that support your organization’s strategic goals. How can you ensure that your program isn't generic? Opt for a program that allows you to craft tailor-made campaigns for both the broader organization as well as for specific teams.
With Qarrot, you can build campaigns around any measurable objective - such as leads closed or calls logged. When team members hit those objectives, you can award them with unique badges (also customizable) and points they can redeem for rewards. What more, they also come with gamification features to keep team members engaged and having fun. The more engaged and interested your team members are, the better results your recognition and rewards program will achieve. So, keep it fun!
Empower with peer-to-peer recognition
As explored earlier, the traditional methods of recognition leave a lot to be desired. Instead of (or in addition to) a top-down approach, leaders should strive to create an environment where employees can motivate and inspire each other. This means you can improve workplace culture while simultaneously reinforcing the core values you want employees to exemplify. In other terms, you can help employees better identify and align with the organization - which is crucial for retaining talent. And the celebrations don’t have to stop there - it’s equally important to mark other occasions like birthdays and work anniversaries. When employees are engaged, their performance reflects that, compared to an unengaged team that often comes with a larger price tag in the long run.
Lighten your load with program automation
All too often, we’ve heard from stressed out HR managers who are working overtime to stay on top of their company’s email and spreadsheet-based recognition and rewards program. Not only do manual programs like this drive many HR managers to the brink, but they’re also far less effective at driving results. This is especially true as organizations grow and the lack of structure wreaks havoc for managers, employees, and the HR department alike. Thankfully, now with the software-enabled programs of today that no longer has to be the case. Recognition software, like Qarrot, helps streamline and automate many of the program tasks like sending recognitions, tracking points, and distributing rewards. Program automation can literally reduce your administration effort by 75%.
Many programs, including Qarrot, also offer intuitive reporting so you can uncover just how engaged your employees are as well as monitor what types of incentives get the best results.
Putting together your employee recognition business case
Even though recognition software like Qarrot makes it easy to measure results, we know it’s often difficult to estimate what those results will be when you’re at the business casing stage.
That’s why we’ve put together an easy-to-use and FREE business case template in Google Sheets. Download our template to put forward an ROI-based argument for employee recognition within your organization.
4 reasons why your recognition program is falling flat
Organizations introduce employee recognition and reward programs with the best of intentions. Not only does celebrating employee achievements improve engagement and motivation, but simultaneously strengthen other areas such as culture and retention. In fact, recognition has been proven to contribute to higher employee engagement, performance, and to help boost other positive behaviors.
We know that recognizing victories both big and small can drive organizational success. So why are so many teams still feeling less than jazzed about their work? It’s a problem that comes with a hefty price tag - to the tune of $500 billion dollars annually, actually. Uninspired employees can leave with you with high turnover, poor workplace morale, and cost you in time, money, and resources.
Related Article: Benefits of positive reinforcement in the workplace
So, implement any old recognition program and wait for the benefits to roll in - right?
Not exactly. In order to see the best results, there needs to be a conscious effort to align your recognition process with your team and organizational goals, specifically. If employee engagement and performance remain at a standstill, this may be an indication that you have a lackluster recognition program.
While every program will vary slightly, here are some common culprits that may leave your team wanting more :
Not approaching employee recognition holistically
Let’s move away from the traditional notion that recognition can only travel from management downward. Peer recognition can be just as powerful! Encouraging positive interactions between employees at all levels improves transparency, relationships, and culture. This also means that your team has more to celebrate - like work anniversary milestones and birthdays.
Inclusion is now more important than ever since remote work has become the new norm. A company-wide recognition program streamlines internal communications by bringing team members together and keeping everyone on the same page. We all know that staying connected has been a challenge this last year, and a full-circle recognition program is an effective way you can bridge the gap.
Not letting people choose their own rewards
We’ve all been there - unwrapping a present someone gave you and pretending to love it. They’re sitting right next to you and you don’t want to hurt their feelings, but you're also mystified as to their thought process behind the gift (which will never see the light of day).
Employee rewards aren’t that different. People are motivated by different things, and there’s nothing particularly inspiring about the same cookie-cutter rewards for every employee and every milestone. Opting for a program that allows employees to choose from a selection of rewards or prizes adds an extra personalized touch that will leave your employees feeling even more valued. Not only does this enable you to truly discover what motivates different team members, it also allows you to keep a pulse on employee engagement in real time.
Related Article: Customize your rewards and recognition program with Qarrot
Doesn’t support or reflect your team's unique needs
The ultimate goal of any recognition program is to drive both employee and organizational success. Keyword here, ‘success’ - which looks different to every employee, team, manager, and company. Is your current recognition program effectively taking those measures of success into account? To truly make waves, recognition programs should be customizable. This can be anything from integrating your branding into the recognition platform to launching incentive campaigns based on specific team performance metrics. However you choose to use a recognition program, ensure it can accurately capture your specific needs and goals. A good rule of thumb is to relate how the program feeds into your mission, vision, and values. If they’re in sync, you’re on the right track.
...it just isn’t that fun
Employees are only going to be responsive with a recognition program if they enjoy using it. Getting employees excited about celebrating each other doesn’t have to be complicated either. Ever thought about exploring gamification? Something as simple as a points based system - where employees receive points alongside recognitions to redeem for rewards - can easily raise the stakes. Although adding gamification features will instigate friendly competition, everyone comes out a winner. Employees will feel supported and empowered by their peers while managers will reap the benefits of a motivated team. Ironically, fun and games are a serious solution to an uninspiring recognition process.
Related Article: Spice up your employee engagement with gamification
To improve the effectiveness of employee recognition programs, companies can take the following steps:
Define Clear Objectives and Metrics
Companies should define clear objectives for their recognition programs, such as improving employee engagement or increasing sales performance, and develop metrics to measure their success. This will help ensure that the program is aligned with the company's overall strategy and values.
Involve Employees in Program Design
Companies should involve employees in the design of their recognition programs, gathering feedback on what types of recognition they find most meaningful and what behaviors and accomplishments should be recognized.
Make Recognition Personal and Timely
Recognition should be personalized to the individual and delivered in a timely manner. This means that recognition should be specific to the employee's accomplishments and delivered as close to the time of the accomplishment as possible.
Provide a Variety of Recognition Options
Companies should provide a variety of recognition options to meet the diverse needs and preferences of employees. This could include verbal recognition, public recognition, monetary rewards, or time off.
Train Managers on Effective Recognition
Managers should be trained on effective recognition techniques, such as providing specific and timely feedback and delivering recognition in a personalized manner. This will ensure that recognition is consistent and aligned with the company's objectives.
Regularly Evaluate and Adjust the Program
Companies should regularly evaluate the effectiveness of their recognition program and make adjustments as needed. This will help ensure that the program continues to meet the needs of employees and achieve the company's objectives.
Related Article: Building a business case for employee recognition
Here are some examples of companies that have implemented effective employee recognition programs:
Salesforce has a recognition program called "The Power of Us" that allows employees to recognize their peers for their accomplishments. The program includes both public recognition and monetary rewards, and employees can earn badges for their achievements.
Cisco has a recognition program called "Connected Recognition" that allows employees to recognize their peers for their accomplishments using a mobile app. The program includes both monetary rewards and non-monetary rewards, such as extra vacation days or access to training and development programs.
Google has a recognition program called "gThanks" that allows employees to send thank-you notes to their colleagues. The notes are delivered both publicly and privately, and employees can earn points for their participation that can be redeemed for rewards.
Don’t be caught empty handed - a recognition and rewards program is one of the most powerful tools a leader can wield when it comes to employee engagement. Uncover how your team can benefit by fostering a recognition rich environment with Qarrot - book a demo today!
Harnessing the power of peer-to-peer recognition
What are you doing to boost employee engagement, drive results, and build culture? Here at Qarrot, we believe that peer recognition is an effective tool for achieving employee and organizational success.
Peer recognition varies from the traditional sense of recognition, which usually travels from manager to employee in a vertical direction. Instead, peer recognition challenges that process by encouraging colleagues at all levels to celebrate each other. This is a far more inclusive, collective, and horizontal approach. Remember how daunting public speaking was as a child in school–having to speak in front of our peers? Receiving feedback, thanks, or recognition from colleagues can be just as motivating as those from leaders.
Encouraging team members to celebrate and reward each other's achievements is a great way to get people excited about work (which we could all use now and then). One of the biggest benefits organizations see as a result of peer recognition is increased employee engagement and morale. How important is employee engagement, you may ask? A staggering 85% of employees are not engaged in the workplace–that’s a lot of room for improvement. Recognition has been a long time source of motivation for cultivating a supportive environment–69% of employees admit they would work harder if they felt like their efforts were better appreciated. Indeed, empowering employees with the proper tools to celebrate each other's achievements will benefit your team tenfold.
Related Article: Benefits of positive reinforcement in the workplace
The benefits of a peer recognition rich environment
Improve workplace culture
Employees' interactions and attitudes are great indicators of how they feel about their work and identity within the organization. Fostering a recognition-rich environment where peers can celebrate wins and share feedback creates a culture where your team will love to work, develop, and grow. And the numbers don’t lie–74% of companies who have an existing process in place report a correlation between recognition and a more positive workplace environment. By recognizing desired outcomes and behavior, leaders can further steep workplace culture in the mission, vision, and values of the company. With peer recognition, you can create a place where your employees truly want to be.
Optimize internal communications
Who says that only manager feedback is important? Recognition and praise from peers can be just as powerful. In fact, recognition is an innovative tool for uncovering insightful feedback in addition to sharing accolades. By introducing peer recognition, managers can see employee engagement in real-time. With personalized rewards and crafting objective-driven campaigns–both of which you can find in Qarrot–leaders can finally identify what truly motivates their team members. Peer recognition also enables a positive feedback loop between team members–increasing the likelihood that employees will continue to perform and deliver results. Is it worth the investment? 46% of managers consider a recognition process an asset, rather than an expense–and a disengaged team will most likely cost you more in the long run.
Related Article: Recognition and retention: the perfect match
Increase employee retention
As we explored above, peer recognition can do wonders for workplace culture–which in turn will also boost employee retention. People don’t leave jobs–they leave poor workplace culture and lackluster leadership. A company's ability to attract and maintain talent is a telltale sign of how things are operating internally. If turnover is high, that’s a big red warning sign for prospective employees to keep moving. Lack of recognition is one of the top reasons people leave an organization–but companies who have an employee recognition program in place report a 31% lower turnover rate. Getting employees involved in the recognition process is an effective way to attract and retain talent.
From reinforcing core values to increasing employee engagement and morale, peer recognition is one process that can reap multiple benefits. Discover how creating a recognition rich environment can help your team–book a demo with Qarrot today!
How Qarrot makes remote work easy
Although the future of the workplace remains uncertain, one thing is for sure - flexible and remote work options have become the new normal. In our unforeseen pandemic reality, companies are faced with redefining the notion of “business as usual” - as business activities are now happening at dining room tables and living room couches. Although remote work is nothing new, the number of companies that perform business operations outside of the traditional office has skyrocketed.
While the shift towards remote work is a learning curve for both employers and employees alike, with the right tools in tow, work can happen just about anywhere. In addition to being productive, keeping employees motivated and engaged can also be achieved while working from home. For example, Qarrot let’s managers and colleagues recognize great work no matter where they’re working. Plus, our automation makes it easy to keep your program running even when you’re not all under the same roof. So, you’ll be well-armed to keep both your employees and business thriving in our new remote reality.
Foster a digital workplace culture
The task of creating a workplace culture is no longer constrained to office parties or casual Fridays. Instead, companies now have to craft the same experience, digitally - a culture that can exist without geographical limits. Luckily, with Qarrot, you can create a recognition rich environment that encompasses every member of your team near and far. A collective approach to rewards and recognition is a sure-fire way to keep your employees engaged while fostering a supportive work culture. During these unfamiliar times, streamlining internal communications and transparency is imperative. Qarrot also features custom badges and rewards you can create to further solidify your organization's unique core values.
Related Article: Customize your rewards and recognition process with Qarrot
Reward employees instantly
Celebrating employees when they achieve goals both big and small is a great way to boost confidence and morale. When it comes to choosing a rewards and recognition process, the most effective ones will deliver rewards promptly. If there is a lag time between recognizing and rewarding an employee, there is a loss in momentum that can sidetrack future employee motivation. When employees redeem their points earned in the Qarrot reward catalog, digital gift cards are immediately sent to their email. If they are redeeming a company-provided reward, the details are instantly sent to the appropriate contact who is responsible for reward distribution. You can also update your rewards catalog and budget at any time. Qarrot makes rewarding your employees easy and instant - no office required.
Incentivize employees with objective-driven campaigns
Qarrot makes keeping track of multiple incentive campaigns and teams a breeze - no matter how widely dispersed. You can create incentive campaigns that measure whatever objective you like and award your employees with both points and badges. Campaigns are conveniently enabled with gamification features - so employees can keep score with their colleagues through the leaderboard and see each others’ campaign awards and recognitions. Managers can easily create incentive campaigns for their own teams, and team members can upload their own results.
Related Article: 6 mistakes that kill employee motivation
Monitor campaign and employee progress
Keeping track of your employees’ progress - whether that's individual accomplishments or campaign performance - can also be done remotely with Qarrot. Admins and Team Leads in charge of automatic campaigns can view both the progress reports and results of their respective campaigns. They also have the option to export that information to Excel. You can review all points and badges earned by an employee through an employee's activity history, or by generating a points/badges earned report. No matter how many employees, teams, or incentive campaigns you may be juggling, Qarrot makes it easy to monitor everyone's progress. Plus, keeping an eye on employee activity means you can learn exactly what motivates your team members and drives performance.
Discover how your team can benefit from peer-to-peer recognition - book a demo with Qarrot today!
Customize your rewards and recognition process with Qarrot
Rewarding and recognizing employees is both a powerful tool for reinforcing desirable behaviors and for strengthening company values and culture. Celebrating those individuals who exhibit favorable attitudes boosts both workplace culture and internal communications. From increasing employee morale to organizational loyalty, every member of your team can benefit from working in a recognition-rich environment.
But how can you ensure that your recognition process packs a punch? Offer your employees a process that accurately reflects the goals, vision, and core values of your organization. Tailoring your process to fit your company's unique needs fosters engaged employees—who may otherwise be unresponsive to a more generic approach. The opportunity to create and customize your own program also gives managers the ability to learn what does—and what does not— motivate their teams.
Related Article: Signs it’s time to automate your rewards and recognition program
One size rarely fits all—and the same can be said for recognition programs. Here at Qarrot, we believe in rewarding and recognizing your people on your own terms. As a manager or supervisor, you should be able to customize and update your recognition process as you see appropriate. Here are a few ways that Qarrot enables a custom, unique rewards and recognition solution tailored specifically to your team.
Badges can be attached to recognitions or used as campaign awards. Admins can create badges based on any theme —so your creative license can run wild! Perhaps you want to create a badge for a monthly team challenge or quarterly sales target. Or maybe you’d like to create badges for each of your company’s core values. Once named, you can enter a brief description of the badge, explaining the award in more detail. You can then select an image from our library that best captures the essence of the badge, or you can upload your own image.
Your rewards and recognition process should be customizable at all points - including the rewards themselves. The Qarrot catalog hosts a large selection of e-gift cards from over 20 countries, but if you’re looking to further customize your rewards you can create as many company-provided rewards as you like. These can be any product, service, or benefit that your company wishes to provide. For example, days off, lunch with the boss, and company swag are common themes. Once you have given your reward a name, for example “Morning coffee and bagels on the boss”, add an accompanying description, image, and point value. Custom rewards are a unique way you can complement and reinforce existing company culture.
Related Article: 5 ways your workplace can motivate employees
Integration with existing tools
Your recognition process should also be easily accessible for admins and employees alike—so we’ve enabled Qarrot to integrate easily with your existing HR and communications tools. If your team is already using BambooHR, you can easily sync your employee database with Qarrot. This means no manual updating, adding, or deleting employees— reducing the administrative load. You also have the option of connecting Microsoft Teams and Slack accounts to Qarrot. This enables activities such as recognitions and campaign awards to appear directly within dedicated channels on those applications—providing an easy, hands-free way that keeps everyone in the loop.
Add your organizational branding
Part of having a rewards and recognition program that compliments your organization is that it also feels like part of your organization. Qarrot makes it easy to customize your company account with logos and color schemes of your choice. From the Settings page, SuperAdmins can easily import custom logos to their Qarrot account and select choices from our color palette. Colors and logos can be updated at any time, so your recognition program can always be tweaked to reflect your current branding.
Learn how to make any of these customizations in your own Qarrot account by visiting our support page:
- Create a custom badge
- Create a custom reward
- Connect Qarrot with BambooHR
- Connect Qarrot with Microsoft Teams
- Connect Qarrot with Slack
- Add organization branding
Empower your employees’ by recognizing company core values - book a demo with Qarrot!
Signs that it's time to automate your rewards and recognition program
An effective employee rewards and recognition program is one of the most powerful tools any organization can wield when it comes to employee experience. Ensuring employees feel valued and appreciated is an essential human need in any workplace. Since employee recognition has been linked to increased productivity, performance, and morale, you will be hard-pressed to find a company that does not recognize a job well done.
But how do you know when your team is outgrowing an existing reward and recognition process? Whether that is to account for various project teams, remote employees, or diverse rewards. It is important that whatever your process looks like, it can accurately reflect and deliver based upon your company's and employee's unique needs.
An automated approach to employee rewards and recognition will drive performance while freeing up more of your valuable time. If you find yourself identifying with any of the following scenarios, it may be time to take your rewards and recognition process online.
You’re suffering from administration overload
Automated rewards and recognition programs should be an engaging and seamless experience that doesn’t weigh anyone down with administrative tasks. Traditional recognition processes usually result in one manager or supervisor carrying the administrative burden that eats up far too much of their time. Many of these tasks - like campaign tracking or reward distribution - can be left to an automated process. Spend your time celebrating employee success instead.
"...used to spend 75% of my time managing incentive payouts, now reduced to 20%" - Misha Moore,
Qarrot user at Dell Technologies
You’re interested in a collective approach
Unlike traditional approaches to employee recognition, the best recognition programs involve every employee at every level. Rather than solely dedicating recognition to managers or supervisors, adopt a tool that will enable collective recognition. Introducing a process that is accessible to every employee throughout your organization boosts company culture - improving both employee morale and loyalty. Peer-to-peer recognition programs give all employees a voice - enabling them to praise colleagues instantly, and not in an exclusively monetary way.
Related Article: Benefits of Positive Reinforcement in the Workplace
You want insights
Regardless of which automation tool you choose, it should be equipped with the ability to issue reports or statistics reflecting how employees are using the platform. How often are people being recognized? Are there particular achievements or goals that receive more recognition than others? How many, or how often, are rewards being redeemed? This knowledge will help paint a picture of how your team members respond best to recognition. After all, the point of a rewards and recognition system is to keep employees engaged and motivated - so you want to make sure your employees are responsive.
You want rewards made easy
The journey from recognizing employees and accumulating points to finally redeeming rewards should not only be easy, but instant. If a recognition isn’t timely, a disconnection may grow between the employee’s accomplishment and the associated reward - which can be confusing and frustrating. The best rewards and recognition tools will have an online catalog to host a variety of rewards that employees can choose from and receive instantly. This will ensure that employees get the rewards they want promptly and takes the task of reward distribution off your plate.
Drive better employee engagement and productivity with Qarrot - book a demo today!
Benefits of positive reinforcement in the workplace
As a manager or team lead, identifying opportunities for improvement, streamlining efficiency, and articulating constructive feedback are everyday tasks. On the opposite side of the coin, it is also your responsibility to recognize hard work, celebrate employee wins, and lead a motivated and engaged team.
Positive reinforcement is one of the easiest and most effective ways you can boost employee morale and performance. Time and time again we are told that employees flourish in a supportive environment. Recognition and care of your team will ensure they feel not only supported, but thrive, within your organization.
Related Article: 6 ways to reward your employees beyond their bank account
The benefits to employees and organizations
There are a variety of ways you can go about instilling discipline and a strong work ethic into your team, but very rarely will negative reinforcement foster desired outcomes or behaviours.
In addition to keeping your team motivated and encouraged, there are a wide array of benefits from adopting positive reinforcement techniques :
- Celebrating employees for their hard work will boost their self-esteem, meaning they will be more enthusiastic about their work and more likely to collaborate with others
- Employees who feel valued and appreciated exhibit greater retention and organizational loyalty
- Positive reinforcement clearly defines and communicates desired behaviors while strengthening the relationship between performance and recognition
- Employees whose performance is rewarded or recognized are more open to learning new techniques, skills, and taking on additional responsibility
- Recognizing those employees who manage their time effectively will increase productivity and efficiency
The summation of all of these benefits-improved attitudes, communications, and employee performance - results in a company culture that is untouchable. Organizations that fail to recognize employee accomplishments will leave team members feeling unappreciated - and unappreciated employees rarely stick around long, let alone challenge or truly apply themselves at work. Toxic work cultures are known to plague employees with unwarranted stress and fatigue, ultimately leading to burnout and exhaustion. The verdict is in; healthy and supportive work cultures are the only way to go, and positive reinforcement can help you achieve just that!
Related Article: 5 ways your workplace can motivate employees
Practicing positive reinforcement through recognition
As explored in our blog post about recognition and retention, one of the leading reasons people leave an organization is because they do not feel appreciated or valued. Acknowledging an employee’s or a colleague’s work, and fostering a recognition-rich environment, is a simple way you can practice positive reinforcement. Routinely celebrating work milestones and team goals encourage positive interactions - cultivating a culture where employees feel supported and valued.
The avenues you can take when it comes to practicing positive reinforcement with your team are endless. As long as it is direct and sincere, your organization will reap the benefits of a motivated and supported team. Finding the perfect balance between how and when to recognize team members will encourage them to challenge themselves while remaining confident in their abilities. Praise your employees for heading in the right direction and your organization will follow suit.
Learn how you can reward employees on your own terms - book a demo with Qarrot!