In a competitive job marketplace where top industry talent is hard to attract and even harder to retain, it’s more important than ever before that recognition in the workplace be a core pillar at every successful company.
We all know why employee recognition is important, but it can be challenging knowing where to start when it comes to selecting the right employee recognition idea for your unique company and employees.
A great place to begin is learning more about common employee recognition examples and how you can potentially implement them in your business.
Employee recognition examples are types of employee recognition methods that are utilized by companies to show appreciation & reward their employees.
Whether recognizing milestones like birthdays, project completions, goal achievements, or outstanding performance– it’s critical that your company has a set of methods in place to effectively recognize those accomplishments in a meaningful way.
Let’s dive in and learn more about employee recognition examples and how real businesses are using them today!
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Employee Recognition Examples
1. Create Customized Awards
When it comes to employee awards, the sky really is the limit. Customized rewards are your chance to get creative with your employee recognition and provide rewards that truly align with your company’s core values. Maybe it’s the best parking space in the office reserved for your top seller each quarter, or a Holiday dinner with the CEO gifted annually, there are so many levers to pull when it comes to customized awards.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: Customized awards help reinforce the overall company culture and help bolster loyalty levels and employee retention.
🌟 Resource that can help: Motivosity
Motivosity is an employee recognition platform that offers customizable recognition opportunities for you to build in alignment with your company pillars. Additionally, Motivosity provides a myriad of other recognition methods making it an all-encompassing go to when it comes to employee recognition.
2. Employee Care Package
Who doesn’t love receiving a care package? Not only are they pleasant surprises, but they truly show that someone is thinking about you. Care packages make awesome employee recognition gifts because they can essentially include whatever you want– from snacks to swag to positive feedback notes– the options are endless.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: The reason this employee recognition example matters is right in its name. Care packages show employees that you truly care about them and value their contributions to the company.
🌟 Resource that can help: Caroo
With so many amazing care package ideas, it can be tough nailing down which options work best for your team and unique company culture. Caroo offers curated and customizable employee care package options that will definitely surprise & delight your employees.
3. Gift Them Time Off
One of the best employee perks you can gift your team is time off to decompress and celebrate their accomplishments. Balancing personal and professional obligations is quite the ongoing juggling act. Utilizing time off as a form of employee recognition incentivizes your employees to strive for their best while providing them with the additional time we all need to recharge.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: Gifting your employees extra time off goes a long way in bolstering your employee’s overall well-being and job satisfaction levels.
🌟 Resource that can help: WorkTango
WorkTango is an employee recognition software tool that enables you to bring your employee recognition efforts to life. Within the platform, you can create customized employee rewards that align with your company culture, such as an extra day off when a milestone is hit or a project is completed.
4. Dinner on the Company
Dinner on the company is another fun way to reward employees and recognize accomplishments. Maybe a new hot spot restaurant opened in the area or your employees have a favorite hang you can purchase a gift card from. Whatever the scenario, a nice dinner paid for by the company is a simple yet impactful method of employee recognition.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: Dinner on the company shows employees that great work and strong performance does not go unnoticed and should be recognized in enjoyable ways.
🌟 Resource that can help: Awardco
Awardco is a one stop shop when it comes to employee recognition, rewards, and incentives. You can easily create customizable rewards such as a dinner & night out on the town with just a few clicks.
5. Digital Gift Card
Whatever the recognition occasion, employee gift cards are a great way to celebrate and recognize your employees. Digital gift cards are a simple, yet effective, type of recognition. One of the best parts of digital gift cards is that you can send them anywhere at any time for any reason. Gift card amounts can also vary based on the type of accomplishment or milestone you’re recognizing, making it super flexible and customizable.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: Digital gift cards show employees that their efforts are not going unnoticed since they can be given throughout the year for whatever reason you see fit.
🌟 Resource that can help: WeGift
WeGift makes digital gift card ordering a breeze. With an extensive gift card catalog that includes thousands of brands, you’ll definitely find the perfect fit for your employees. You can instantaneously recognize employee accomplishments & send digital gift cards both individually or in bulk.
6. Employee Shout Out Wall
Employee shout outs can be something as simple as a team email celebrating an employee or can be more structured with an official employee shout out wall or platform. Employee shout outs can be given by downwards (management to direct reports), upwards (direct reports to management), and laterally (colleague to colleague).
Employee shout outs should be concise and highlight exactly what accomplishment or contribution you’re recognizing.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: Employee shout out walls are a great way to recognize work and star contributors that may fly a bit under the radar. It provides recognition in a public forum which helps shine the light on everyday wins.
🌟 Resource that can help: Mo Work
Mo Work is an employee recognition platform that encourages users to share Moments shouting out their fellow colleagues. It bolsters peer to peer recognition and cross-collaboration between teams that may otherwise be a bit siloed.
7. Team Game Night
Team game nights are another unique and fun way to recognize your employees! Whether hosting a virtual game night or an in-person event, team game nights are a great way to not only recognize your employees, but bring them together for a bonding experience they won’t soon forget.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: Team game nights show your employees that you’re willing to invest in fun activities where team bonding and camaraderie is encouraged.
🌟 Resource that can help: Confetti
Confetti does all of the heavy lifting of coordinating team games nights on your behalf! They offer really fun game night options such as Coworker Feud, Taboo, Pictionary, Charades and Trivia.
8. Public Recognition
When it comes to employee rewards and recognition, you can and should recognize your employees privately, but public recognition is just as important, if not more. Some examples of opportunity for public recognition include company town halls, quarterly newsletters, team emails, and employee shout out walls.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: Recognizing employee accomplishments in a public forum shows your employees that value their efforts enough to provide public praise for the entire team or company to see.
🌟 Resource that can help: Bonusly
Think of Bonusly like an internal social media network for your company. Employees and leadership alike can post real-time recognition messages on the company wall with rewards points associated with them for the entire company to see & celebrate.
9. Bond Over Brews
Whether a virtual happy hour or in-person hang, bonding over a few brews is a great way to recognize team accomplishments or milestones. Chatting over drinks and a few appetizers provides your team with an opportunity to bond outside of the work environment and build a sense of community.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: No one loves being all work and no play, so team happy hours encourage your employees to celebrate their wins with the colleagues that made them happen.
🌟 Resource that can help: Unboxed Experiences
Unboxed Experiences helps bring the fun of happy hour into the convenience of your employee’s living rooms. Their Beer & Cheese Experience delivers everything your employees need to bond over some brews and snacks directly to their doorstep!
10. Create a CareCard
CareCards or work ecards are a fantastic way to recognize employees in a thoughtful and meaningful manner. CareCards should contain a brief message of thanks or praise and can be sent from an individual or by a group of employees in recognition of another.
Why this recognition example matters to employees: A ‘thank you’ is more powerful than you’d think. At times when employees feel unnoticed or underappreciated, a CareCard could be just what they need for that extra morale boost.
🌟 Resource that can help: CareCards
Make collaboration & participation easy by sending a CareCard. Groups of employees can work together to create the perfect CardCard for any occasion.
Employee Recognition Program Examples
Motivosity is a points-based employee reward, recognition, and engagement platform. An employee points program is an extremely effective example of an employee reward system. For example, within the Motivosity platform, users can post messages of recognition shouting out their colleague’s contributions with redeemable reward points attached.
🏅 Standout Features
- ThanksMatter Visa card that your employees can use to purchase the things they truly want.
- Redeemable reward points can easily be attached to recognition posts.
- Milestones appear on employee login dashboard so they can congratulate & reward their colleagues as they celebrate.
👍🏻 Why we love this employee recognition program example: We love that Motivosity takes the guesswork out of employee rewards with their ThanksMatters card. As their appreciation points accrue, employees can immediately redeem those points on rewards they choose.
📌 Notable companies using Motivosity:
- Adobe Workfront
🌟 Learn more about Motivosity here!
If you’re a bit stumped as to how to create an employee recognition program, WorkTango is the perfect place to start. WorkTango’s robust platform offers avenues for employee recognition, rewards, and collaboration. Within it, users can provide praise with rewards, work to achieve incentives, and redeem their rewards for items they love.
🏅 Standout Features
- WorkTango’s social activity feed allows users to view and interact with the praise their colleagues are receiving in real time via messages and emoji reactions.
- Manage and customize your Nominations & Awards within the platform to ensure they align with your company pillars.
- Users can redeem their Reward Points by shopping the Rewards Catalog which includes gift cards, merchandise, experiences, or a charitable donation option.
👍🏻 Why we love this employee recognition program example: We love that WorkTango places the employee experience at the center of everything they do! The platform is super user friendly which makes employee adoption a lot smoother.
📌 Notable companies using WorkTango:
- Kaiser Permanente
🌟 Check out additional details on WorkTango!
WeGift is the ultimate digital gift card platform that puts employee recognition at your fingertips. Send personalized and automated gift rewards directly to your employees to celebrate their accomplishments and milestones.
🏅 Standout Features
- Easily place a bulk gift card order in WeGift with just a few clicks.
- Utilize WeGift’s digital prepaid Visa cards to give the gift of choice to your employees.
- Through their insightful Redemption Reporting feature, discover which rewards are most popular amongst your employees and what the redemption rates are.
👍🏻 Why we love this employee recognition program example: We love that WeGift is set up to support a global workforce offering digital gift card options in more than 30 countries and 18 different currencies!
📌 Notable companies using WeGift:
🌟 Dive into more info about WeGift here!
4. Mo Rewards
When building an employee incentive program, it’s important to motivate your employees with rewards that resonate with them and with your overall work culture. The Mo in Mo Rewards is short for Moments. Within the platform, users can share a Moment to recognize a team member, celebrate a win, communicate company updates, and tons more!
🏅 Standout Features
- When it comes to rewards, you can choose redeemable vouchers from vendors like Amazon and ASOS or lean into your unique company culture and create custom company awards like lunch with the CMO.
- Mo Rewards’ Nomination feature allows users to nominate top performers who are bringing company pillars to life.
- Mo Reward’s Boosts function will periodically and automatically ping users with a friendly reminder to share out Moments celebrating everyday wins.
👍🏻 Why we love this employee recognition program example: We love Mo Rewards because their platform features allow easy customization and encourages employee participation.
📌 Notable companies using Mo Rewards:
- William Hill
🌟 Learn more about Mo Rewards here!
Bucketlist is an employee engagement & rewards platform that helps build a culture of recognition and praise. The platform allows leadership and peers alike to show employee appreciation with rewards attached.
🏅 Standout Features
- Bucketlist’s automated Anniversary and Milestone recognition function ensure you never miss an important moment in your employee’s career at the company!
- Utilize Bucketlist’s newsletter feature to send out important company announcements and employee shout outs via a post or email.
- Create Team Building Competitions where employees work together to achieve a common team or company goal.
👍🏻 Why we love this employee recognition program example: Employee recognition platforms are only effective if your employees actually engage with them. Bucketlist is ranked 1st for ‘Ease of Use.’
📌 Notable companies using Bucketlist:
- Home Instead
- RBC Ventures
- Berkeley Lab
- Stamford Health
🌟 Check out some additional details on Bucketlist here!
Team Recognition Examples From Real Companies
1. Alert the Office!
Jellyfish, a marketing performance company, utilizes Bonusly to recognize and reward their employees. To shake things up, the staff created an in-office robot who announces when employees receive Bonusly points from their colleagues. What a fun & creative way to bring the Bonusly platform to life in the office!
Tip! If you don’t have robot building skills like the Jellyfish team does, try kicking off weekly team calls or town halls by sharing some of the recent Bonusly recognition posts with the group.
2. Recognize with Swag
Total Synergy partnered with Swag.com to create an awesome employee welcome package that includes a welcome note, cozy branded swag, and branded office supplies. Talk about a great way to kick things off on the right foot and welcome your new employees!
Tip! Choose from curated swag options or create your own employee welcome care kit from scratch with Swag.com.
3. Celebrate Workaversaries
Celebrating work anniversaries is such an important opportunity to recognize your employees! At monday.com, they recently celebrated a Workaversary with a personalized note and gift. They also celebrated the overall company success with a team trip to Rhodes, which is another great way to recognize company & employee accomplishments.
Tip! Partner with either your HR team to offer personalized gifts or rewards for each employee! A team-signed card can go a long way!
4. Get the Team Lunch!
Getting rewarded for going out to lunch with your coworkers? Sign me up! At Motivosity, they utilize their platform to create custom rewards based on activities such as grabbing lunch with a few colleagues. This encourages and rewards team bonding and relationship building amongst your employees.
Tip! It can be challenging making friends and building connections in the workplace- whether hybrid, remote, or in-person. Set up the ‘Lunch with Coworkers’ reward to give your employees the nudge they need to spend time getting to know their fellow colleagues.
5. Recognize Remote Teams with a Meetup
With this rise in remote work post-Covid, it can be tough to build strong work relationships and work culture for remote teams. You can host an in-person event for some of your remote employees to meet each other and spend some good old quality facetime together. While virtual collaboration is so important, the power of face-to-face interaction & collaboration can be quite impactful as well.
Tip! Identify if you have hubs of remote workers located in the same city so you can organize regional meetups in those corresponding cities.
6. Tie in your Company Culture
Trevor Larson, CEO at Nectar, recently posted on LinkedIn how work culture has evolved dramatically since the 2010s when culture was synonymous with free lunch or office snacks. Now, work culture is much more nuanced and includes things like employee recognition, growth opportunities, and work flexibility. However you choose to recognize and reward your employees, there should be aligned with your overall company culture & values.
Tip! If sustainability is a really big piece of your company culture, consider creating rewards tied to specific sustainability goals & accomplishments.
7. Send Them on an Adventure
What better way to recognize your employees than with a cool experiential reward? Many times, an experience is much more meaningful and memorable than monetary rewards. Kichler Lighting recently partnered with Blueboard to recognize all of their employees celebrating their 5-year tenure with an experiential reward of their choosing. Options included outdoor adventures like kayaking and treat-yourself experiences like beauty treatments.
Tip! Whether it’s a popular concert, sporting event, or spa day– there are so many amazing experiential rewards to offer your employees. The options are truly endless!
8. Recognize their Furry Friends
Whether your employees are in-office or working remotely, recognizing your employees’ pets is a super fun and creative way to engage your employees! Rag & Bone recently hosted a HOWL-O-WEEN pet costume contest for their employees & their furry friends.
Tip! If your team is completely remote, try organizing a ‘Bring Your Pet to the Zoom’ hang where employees are encouraged to put their furry friends to work.
9. Plan a Spirit Week
A spirit week is an awesome way to engage your employees and get them excited about the company! Spirit weeks can consist of team activities like trivia or pictionary. You can also host a company picnic during that week or end with a spirit awards ceremony. Awardco recently had a beach day theme during their spirit week where employees were encouraged to come into the office dressed in their best beach day wear (think sunglasses, bucket hats, and sunblock on the nose).
Tip! If you’re looking for spirit week ideas for work, start simple and scale as the company/team grows. Try a team happy hour or team golf trip or a themed 80s day in the office.
10. Spread Words of Affirmation
Some weeks are tougher than others. Some days are more challenging than others. Words of affirmation can help keep your employees feeling recognized, appreciated, and recharged. Mo Rewards recently posted on their LinkedIn how significant a few words of praise and recognition are for employee morale.
A simple ‘thank you’ or ‘good job’ can go a long way in putting an extra pep in your employee’s step.
Tip! If you’re having a bit of writer’s block or feeling a bit stumped, check out these employee recognition quotes to get the creative juices flowing!
People Also Ask These Questions About Employee Recognition Examples
Q: What are some examples of recognition awards to give out?
- A: Some examples of recognition awards to give employees include additional time off, digital gift cards, and employee care packages.
Q: Are there free recognition examples to use at work?
- A: Yes, there are free recognition examples to use at work. These include words of affirmation, public recognition, and spirit week activities.
Q: Where can I find examples of team recognition being effective in the workplace?
- A: You can find examples of team recognition being effective in the workplace right here at the tail end of this article. We share 10 real-life examples of companies implementing effective employee recognition examples.
Q: What are some examples of employee recognition statements?
- A: Some examples of employee recognition statements include ‘You continually go the extra mile & it’s so appreciated’ and ‘thank you for all of your amazing & valuable contributions this month.’
Q: What is a good manager recognition example?
- A: A good manager recognition example is sharing out positive feedback via email or verbally during either 1:1 meetings or team calls.