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9 Key Points for a Successful Employee Rewards Program

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9 Key Points for a Successful Employee Rewards Program

To ensure the success of employee rewards programs, they need to be designed thoughtfully and implemented methodically. So, let’s discuss the most important points to be kept in mind while developing a successful employee rewards program.

Why is Employee Rewards and Recognition so Important?

Integrate Reward and Recognition with Innovation Efforts

In a survey, 40% of participating employees said that they were likely to put more energy into their work if they were to be recognized more often.

Employee Rewards and Recognition

Moreover, 90% of HR professionals agree to the fact that an effective rewards and recognition program helps drive business results.

Long Service Award

In another study, 91% of HR executives said that such programs impacted employee retention positively while 80% said that they were likely to invest in strong and effective rewards programs for their workforce in the coming months.

How to run a  Successful Employee Rewards Program?

9 Key Points for a Successful Employee Rewards Program

1. Reward Frequently

Committed Employees

The work environment today is extremely stressful and competitive.

This is why it is important to recognize the efforts of employees frequently. 

Organizations need to reconsider the tradition of recognizing their employees on a yearly or quarterly basis.

Frequent recognition can reassure employees that their organization values and appreciates them for their achievements and contributions.

2. Make Recognition Spontaneous


It is important for organizations today to ensure that the employee recognition program is lightweight and spontaneous.

Recognition should not be as per a set schedule, but as and when employees do something worth appreciating.

Such spontaneous recognition is more authentic and fills the employees with a sense of gratitude.

3. Reward in Time

Rewards and recognition can provide the best results only when they are offered on time

Delays in appreciating employees just to adhere to predefined timelines can make the whole process ineffective.

This is because people tend to quickly forget the achievements of others.

Delayed recognition not only diminishes the sense of achievement for employees but also fails to inspire their peers.

4. Be Specific about the Behaviors or Achievements being Rewarded


Rewards and recognition should have a direct connection with specific achievements and actions of the recipients for them to be more effective.

Hence, a successful rewards program should clearly outline the criteria for which the employees receive appreciation.

Any verbal or written recognition is incomplete unless it mentions the specific reasons for which the employee is getting recognition.

5. Provide Equal Opportunities for Participation


good recognition program should level the playing field for all members of the workforce.

Hence, this means that the program should encourage participation from all employees working at various levels within the organizational hierarchy.

The program can also be split into segments, with each segment covering a specific level of employees.

Hence, such an approach is sure to boost employee motivation and engagement across all levels within the organization.

6. Ensure Highest Levels of Transparency


If for any reason, employees think that the rewards system is biased, it will render it completely ineffective. 

Hence an organization needs to ensure complete transparency while designing and implementing the rewards program.

For this, they should share the policy, criteria, and other details with all employees from time to time.

7. Create Maximum Visibility

Empower Employees and Create an Innovation Funnel

Making the program visible to the entire workforce means that employees get appreciation on a more public platform or forum.

Maximizing the visibility of the program ensures that other employees feel inspired by the commendable work done by their colleagues.

This could be through offline events such as town halls, team meetings, and award ceremonies as well as their virtual equivalents.

Social visibility can also be through communication on organization-wide digital platforms such as the intranet, Teams, and Slack. 

Hence, this motivates other employees to make similar positive contributions and receive similar appreciation and recognition for their efforts.

8. Align with Business Objectives

Provide Time and Resources to Employees to Explore New Ideas

Recognizing great work is important, however, if not relevant to the business, it becomes a mere formality.

However, when the program properly aligns with the business objectives, employees are likely to experience greater motivation while receiving recognition.

This helps employees understand the gap between their achievements and the organization’s goals and align their efforts accordingly.

9. Make the Benefits Measurable

Measure The Impact Of The Program

Also, it is important to ensure that the benefits from the rewards program are measurable.

Hence, organizations should be able to quantify the improvement in employee engagement, motivation, and productivity after program implementation.

It also helps organizations to identify any shortcomings in the program and address them to get better results.


Organizations need to consider the above points to ensure the development of a successful employee rewards and recognition program that is beneficial and satisfying for both the organization as well as its employees.

Sagar Chaudhuri

Lead author: Sagar Chaudhuri, the Co-Founder and CEO of HiFives. He is an HR Tech Evangelist with over 25 years of experience in the corporate world and entrepreneurship. In the past, Sagar has worked with companies such as Genpact, Infosys, and ICICI Bank, in leadership roles. He has an engineering degree from IIT Kharagpur and an MBA from IIM Lucknow. Connect on LinkedIn

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HiFives is a global employee rewards, recognition and engagement SaaS platform that enables organizations to digitize, automate and transform their employee experience. It is used by 100+ large enterprises, small businesses and startups in manufacturing, retail, technology, financial services and media, across 25+ countries.