Retaining their high-performing employees is a major challenge faced by business organizations today. The problem has been further complicated by the growing popularity of the trend of job-hopping, which essentially means employees seek new job opportunities after every 2-3 years. In many cases, the employers also encourage this trend as they believe the fresh recruits may be more motivated and productive as they are keen about making a good impression. However, though job-hopping has become a common phenomenon in modern workplaces, there is still a large section of employees who stay put with an organization for a major part of their professional lives. By setting up long service awards for such employees, companies can establish the precedent of rewarding their loyalty and acknowledging their contribution towards organizational growth.
Significance of Long-serving Employees
In today’s work environment, employee loyalty is becoming quite rare. Counter to this trend, long-term employees are considered highly trustworthy and still form a critical part of any organizational workforce. In fact, companies have begun to value such employees even more in recent times as they help in creating a sense of stability in the otherwise constantly changing workforce. Rather than criticizing such employees to be lacking in ambition and aspiration, companies should see these employees as a means of motivating the other members of the workforce to stay with the organization for the long term.
Best Practices for Long Service Awards
In order to drive a sense of loyalty among the members of the workforce, it is important for organizations to properly recognize and reward long service. Sadly, this is something that most companies tend to overlook as they feel that regular recognition of the efforts and skills put in by the employee over the years is simple enough. However, rewarding the loyalty of employees towards the organization is not the same as rewarding them for their initiatives, contribution, and efficiency in their regular job responsibilities. Discussed below are a few of the best practices that organizations can follow while setting up long service rewards for their long-term employees:
1. Reward their achievements as well as their time
It is important for organizations to acknowledge the tangible benefits that their long-term employees might have ensured for the organization over their long years of service. A long service reward should focus on appreciating the achievements of these employees as well as the time they have invested with the organization. It is important to highlight these achievements and mention how they proved beneficial for the organization. Using the award as a means of celebrating their positive contribution, dedication, and loyalty for the organization will help enhance its relevance for the employees receiving the award.
2. Organize a proper ceremony for presenting the rewards
In order to add value to the rewards, it is important to present them at a proper ceremony attended by a majority of the workforce. Just giving the award in a small informal gathering of employees belonging to the same department as the recipients will dilute its importance.
The attendees should be made aware of why the recipients are being given the reward and what value they hold for the organization. In order to highlight the importance of this occasion, the entire session should be led by someone from the senior management team, preferably someone who has known the recipient for long.
3. Announce the awards in a public platform within the organization
Using a public platform to announce the long service awards can help in motivating existing and potential employees to consider a long stint with the organization. Publicly acknowledging their long-serving employees helps organizations to send out a positive message about the career growth and professional success opportunities available with the organization. In addition, it also assures the fresh and prospective recruits of about a high level of job satisfaction and the presence of a positive work culture within the organization. In that context, the social media platforms can prove to be ideal for publicizing about the long service rewards and their recipients since most young professionals use these platforms extensively.
4. Make the reward meaningful for the recipients
It is extremely essential for the organizations to ensure that the reward holds some meaning and value for the recipients. This requires the HR team to do some research on what their long-serving employees may find meaningful and valuable. It may be an assortment of small gifts, a cash reward or a gift vouchers for shopping or vacation possibly with a certificate and a memento.
Overall, establishing a program for long service awards in the right manner can go a long way in enhancing the sense of loyalty and commitment towards the organization among its employees.
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