The latest trends in employee recognition

'It's been encouraging that even in this time, with so many different challenges, people recognize the value of it'

The latest trends in employee recognition

The COVID-19 pandemic has seen many changes to the workplace, but when it comes to employee recognition, a plethora of creativity in this crucial area has helped many organizations survive and thrive – as seen in Canadian HR Reporter’s Readers’ Choice 2022 winners.

Recognition has become more important, especially for those working from home, according to a recent survey by OC Tanner, as 64 per cent of respondents said acknowledgement of their good work is even more significant than in past years.

“We used to talk a lot about employee engagement for a number of years, but now it seems to be more about connection, employees feeling connected to the organization, to their colleagues and to the purpose of the organization. It’s required creativity, and that continues now that we’re in the hybrid model,” says Chris Vyse, vice president of sales and marketing at OC Tanner in Burlington, Ont.

These efforts need to take place often, according to another Workhuman survey, and not only around performance management meetings.

Why people are leaving

For employers hoping to stem the tide of mass exodus, strategically employing recognition efforts pays off.

“The lack of appreciation of performance is one of the things that’s driving the resignation and people moving jobs. So that’s something that can be addressed more inexpensively,” says Mike Byam, executive chairman of Terryberry in Grand Rapids, Mich. “It’s been encouraging that even in this time, with so many different challenges, people recognize the value of it.”

Besides the obvious things such as salary and benefits, a simple thank you can go a long way.

“Employees need to feel five things: they need to feel welcomed, known, included, supported and connected. And where we think recognition has great utility is in fostering those types of connections, especially as organizations embrace, if not remote work, then some sort of hybrid model,” according to David Bator, managing director of the Achievers Workforce Institute in Toronto.

For more from these winners, check out the feature in the Readers’ Choice 2022 winners.

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