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Social Recognition as a Multiplier for Employee Recognition?

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Social Recognition as a Multiplier for Employee Recognition?

Rewarding and recognizing employees effectively is a top priority for all organizations looking to build a committed and engaged workforce. Hence, organizations are always looking for ways and means to enhance the impact of employee rewards and recognition. In fact, social recognition is one such method that has gained much popularity in recent years.

What is Social Recognition?

Social Recognition is Essential for Employee Recognition

Social recognition is all about acknowledging and appreciating the efforts and contributions of employees in a social setting, either physical or digital.

These could be team meetings, town halls, company events, intranets, internal collaboration platforms such as Teams or Slack, email newsletters, or even social media posts.

Social recognition focuses on highlighting the achievements of the employees to other employees or even to people outside the organization.

Why Social Recognition?

Recognizing employees socially is emerging as a potential game-changer for employee recognition programs.

Making it integral to rewards and recognition programs can add tremendous value for organizations.

It can become the key to building a thriving and inclusive work environment where employees feel valued and appreciated.

Awards Event

So, how can social recognition become a potential multiplier of the impact of employee recognition programs? Here goes.

1. Enhances Pride and Sense of Achievement

2. Drives Intrinsic Motivation

3. Inspires Other Employees

4. Drives Loyalty and Commitment

5. Promotes Transparency and Fairness

5. Promotes Transparency and Fairness

7. Creates a Culture of Appreciation

8. Enhances Remote Employee Engagement

9. Increases Employer Brand Value 


1. Enhances Pride and Sense of Achievement


Getting recognized socially amplifies the self-esteem and pride of employees.

The social visibility of the recognition, in front of their co-workers only boosts their happiness and satisfaction of getting rewarded.

Hence, the perceived value of the recognition received increases manifold.

2. Drives Intrinsic Motivation


Social recognition goes a long way in boosting the intrinsic motivation of employees.

When employees feel inspired internally, the impact of any extrinsic rewards increases several times.

Hence, recognizing employees socially can enhance their motivation and commitment significantly.

3. Inspires Other Employees

Enable Social Recognition for Innovators 

Recognizing socially makes other employees aware of the achievements and the efforts of their co-workers who have gotten them the recognition.

It inspires them to work towards emulating their performance and achievements.

This can set in motion, a virtuous circle of high performance and social recognition, that can fuel productivity and business growth. 

4. Drives Loyalty and Commitment

Committed Employees

There is no better way to promote employee loyalty and commitment than recognizing them socially.

It assures employees that the organization takes pride in their achievements and is willing to show them off.

Hence, it enhances their sense of comfort, security, and satisfaction with their employer and encourages them to stay on.

5. Promotes Transparency and Fairness

Incentivize Kaizen, Lean and Six Sigma Projects

By recognizing their employees socially, organizations can build trust and genuineness around employee recognition.

Highlighting employee achievements publicly helps provide other employees with a clear understanding of why their peers deserve recognition.

Hence, it casts away any doubts or distrust that they might have about the fairness of the recognition program.

6. Boosts Workforce Collaboration


When employees in an organization receive recognition socially, it increases their visibility across teams.

Therefore, it can promote teamwork and even cross-functional collaboration.

This can boost the overall efficiency and productivity of the workforce.

7. Creates a Culture of Appreciation

Integrating Employee Recognition with the Organizational Culture

Social recognition helps in creating a culture of positivity.

It encourages supervisors and employees to recognize their co-workers openly without any fear or hesitation.

Appreciation becomes a cultural norm across the organization.

It helps build a positive work environment with a high level of mutual appreciation, respect, and trust.

8. Enhances Remote Employee Engagement

A Guide to Organizing a Virtual Employee Awards Ceremony

Employees working remotely develop greater connections with their co-workers and their organization, when they receive recognition socially.

It helps in bridging the gap in the emotional connection among remote employees due to the lack of physical proximity.

It also makes them feel truly valued and integral to the organization, despite operating in isolation. 

9. Increases Employer Brand Value 

Employer Branding

Employee recognition especially when done publicly on social media can help enhance the employer brand value of the organization significantly.

It sends a strong positive message that the organization values its employees and appreciates their contribution.

This can provide it with an edge while trying to attract top talent from the industry.

What are the Best Practices of Social Recognition?

For organizations to maximize the benefits of making social recognition an integral part of the employee rewards program, it is important to implement and execute it correctly.

Integrate Reward and Recognition with Innovation Efforts

So, here are a few best practices for recognizing employees socially, that organizations should follow:

1. Organize Recognition Events

2. Make Them Regular

3. Involve the Top Leadership

4. Maximize Employee Participation

5. Promote Peer-to-Peer Recognition

6. Use Digital Recognition Platform

7. Leverage Internal Communication Platforms

8. Utilize Social Media

9. Consider Other Channels

Best Practices of Social Recognition

1. Organize Recognition Events

Virtual Awards Ceremony

Organizations should look at recognizing their top-performing employees during floor huddles, team meetings, town halls, annual events, etc.

They should also look at organizing dedicated recognition events such as award ceremonies regularly.

Organizations that have a workforce that is geographically dispersed or working remotely, should utilize digital platforms such as Zoom, Teams, and Google Meet to organize virtual award ceremonies as part of regular meetings or as separate events.

2. Make Them Regular

Whether online or offline, it is important to offer social recognition consistently to make it more impactful.

Organizations need to focus on recognizing the efforts and achievements of employees in a public setting regularly.

Also, organizations should encourage their managers and supervisors to recognize their team members publicly for exceptional performance as and when they happen.

3. Involve the Top Leadership

Top Management Role in Employee Rewards and Recognition

The involvement of the top leadership can provide the right visibility to employee recognition.

This could be in the form of an all-employee email from the CEO’s desk, announcing the award winners for the quarter.

Or a member of the top management felicitating the best performers in a town hall or an all-hands meeting.

4. Maximize Employee Participation

traction for employee recognition programs

Organizations need to ensure that a maximum number of employees can attend these recognition events, whether physical or digital.

A large-scale award ceremony should be planned either as a part of a town hall all-hands meeting or a standalone event. If a significant number of employees are working from home or other locations, video or web conferencing should be considered.

This can maximize the visibility of those employees who receive recognition during these events.

So that other employees can become aware of their achievements and feel inspired.

5. Promote Peer-to-Peer Recognition

Best Practices of Employee Rewards and Recognition

Empowering and enabling employees to recognize their peers and co-workers is another effective way to make the program more impactful.

Peer-to-peer recognition is a great way to drive social recognition.

It enhances the level of employee engagement and paves the way for a more pleasant and positive work environment.

6. Use Digital Recognition Platform


Investing in good employee recognition software can boost the effectiveness of social recognition.  

Such platforms make the process of recognition easy and seamless for supervisors and peers.

The recognition updates can be published on these platforms instantly and made visible to employees across the organization.

Most platforms include a virtual wall of fame where all the award winners are showcased. and a virtual leaderboard where the top winners are showcased.

7. Leverage Internal Communication Platforms

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Most organizations today use collaboration tools such as Intranets, Slack, Teams, Workplace, etc. for efficient communication within the workplace.

Hence, broadcasting about the achievements or contributions of employees is a great way to recognize them socially.

This works well especially when the organization has a significant number of employees working remotely or across multiple locations.

When the digital recognition platform is integrated with internal communication platforms, the updates about recognition can be propagated across the organization quickly and seamlessly.

8. Utilize Social Media


Social visibility need not be limited to employees of the organization only.

The recognition can be posted on different social media platforms such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. using the company’s social handles.

Social media is one of the best ways to highlight the good work and achievements of employees to a larger audience outside the organization.

Even employee recognition platforms can be integrated with social media, enabling employees to share their rewards and recognition using their social handles.  

Sharing pictures or videos of employee recognition events on social media is also a good idea.

9. Consider Other Channels


Also, organizations can look at using LEDs and other display units in prominent areas of their workplaces to showcase their top achievers.

Posters, banners, standees, tent cards, etc at different places in the workplace such as entrance lobbies, pantries, cafeterias, and work areas, etc. are other options.

Creating a physical wall of fame showcasing the award winners and ‘thank you’ boards are ideas also worth considering.

Additionally, organizations can think of recognizing their top performers on their corporate websites to maximize public visibility.

Final Thoughts

Social recognition is an effective tool for creating a culture of high performance and appreciation. It can boost employee morale, productivity, and engagement. Hence, recognizing employees socially is a key step towards creating a great work environment and driving business growth.

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.