Every modern company is familiar with the concept and importance of employee recognition. This is something that has been discussed and agreed upon for a long time now. However, despite knowing how important this is, why do some organizations miss implementing employee recognition programs?

Studies and surveys have consistently shown that recognition is the most significant contributor to great work. For example, 37% of employees say they do a great job at work because their efforts are recognized. In contrast, only 7% and 4% of employees do a great job for money and promotion. This should help you appreciate the importance of good employee recognition programs.

Employee recognition is also a solid foundation for employee engagement. These two are complementary ideas that go hand in hand.

What is employee engagement?

Employee engagement is the quantitative and qualitative commitment that employees have towards helping the organization grow and achieve its goals. You can also consider it as an invisible yet strong emotional and mental connection between employees and the organization.

An engaged employee is more committed, productive, and involved. Experts agree that employee engagement is one of the top five global business strategies.

An engaged employee knows precisely what to do in the organization and how best to do it. One of the best ways to improve employee engagement is to invest in your rewards and recognition programs.

What is employee recognition and what are employee recognition programs?

Employee recognition is the act or process of acknowledging and appreciating your employee for the work that they have done. If you think your organization is doing enough recognition activities by sending out awards a couple of times a year and giving out gift cards for top performers once a year, you cannot be more wrong.

Employee recognition programs are round-the-year processes that need to be holistic, timely, regular, and meaningful. Employees need to be socially and publicly recognized internally instead of just an individual receiving an email. More importantly, employee recognition ideas and Rewards and Recognition (R&R) programs need to be aligned with the business goals and not created just for the sake of it.

A survey done across 180 companies in different industries shows that about 55% of R&R programs are either moderately aligned to business goals or not aligned at all.

There are so many forms of employee recognitions, including the ones below.

  • Peer-to-peer recognition
  • Manager nomination
  • Personal Milestones like Birthdays/Anniversay
  • Service Milestone AwardsClient recognition

A Society of Human Resource Managers report mentions that companies that invested in the right employee recognition programs saw up to 63% increase in employee productivity and a 52% increase in employee retention.

The impact of employee recognition on employee engagement

You would be surprised to know how much employee recognition or its absence matters when it comes to improving or bringing down employee engagement in a workplace.

According to a survey by WorkHuman, a Human Capital Management software solution company, 84% of all Human Resource leaders say that employee recognition programs positively impact employee engagement.

Recognition is the easiest way to improve the morale of your employees. Employees who feel that their efforts are recognized and rewarded duly get motivated to work even better the next time.

As per experts, organizations need to create an engagement culture. This means recognizing, celebrating, and rewarding the smallest of achievements and employee milestones  and being open about communication and feedback.

Most managers assume that employee recognition ideas need to have an expansive budget, and hence, stay away from these. That’s not true at all. It is not always necessary to shower your employees with monetary benefits or gifts when you want to recognize them.

About 82% of employees say that they consider being praised more valuable than being offered a gift!

Most employees would love to take a printout of an appreciation email and keep it on their desk rather than use up the cash or gift offered by an organization. Appreciation always matters more.

Click here to read our blog on 21 Effective Ideas for Employee Rewards and Recognition Program.

What are the three tangible benefits of employee recognition programs?

Retention of high performing employees

Employee retention is an important factor that indicates how satisfied and happy employees are with an organization. The average employee attrition rate in India in 2021 is about 23-25%. Employee recognition ideas, when implemented right, can have a direct impact on boosting the retention rate.

Employees who are recognized don’t feel the need to switch jobs. Instead, they feel valued and cherished in the place they are in.

Improved productivity

Most employees agree that their productivity increases when they are recognized better at work. Employees’ productivity increases by up to 14% in organizations that have healthy employee recognition programs in place.

According to experts, a behaviour that is expressly noted by the management gets repeated in the future. So, when you praise an employee for their productivity, their productivity levels further increase in the future.

Decreased absenteeism

Ruling out valid reasons for absenteeism, employees try and stay away from work when they are not happy and engaged at the workplace.

However, employees who are rewarded and recognized timely and appropriately enjoy going to work. As a result, through reward and recognition, employers can see a considerable reduction in absenteeism. When employees head to work regularly, the tasks get completed on time, and deadlines are met more effectively.

A Gallup workplace report states that when employees are recognized and, as a result, engaged at the workplace, absenteeism drops by up to 41%.

How to build a culture of employee recognition?

Invest in technology

This is the simplest way to build a culture of employee recognition. Invest in tools that make creating and implementing employee recognition programs in small and large organizations easier.

Such tools can streamline rewards and recognition processes and encourage people to take these up. Tools make it effortless to implement new employee recognition ideas without spending years on getting people familiarized with these strategies.

These tools make it possible to build a culture of appreciation and recognition.

A good Rewards and Recognition tool can:

  • Make your recognition program instant and spontaneous
  • Foster social proliferation of good wood and reinforcing desired behaviours demonstrated
  • Create examples of good work and inspire other employee
  • Encourage peer to peer endorsement
  • Automate complex recognition workflows
  • Use elements of gamification for greater adoption
  • Unify dis-separated programs on single application for easy administration
  • Put recognition in the hands of your employees through mobile apps
  • Encourage employee longitivity through service milestones
  • Reduce administration cost for separate programs
  • Bring culturally relevant and locally redeemable reward options
  • Choice of reward leading to higher gratification
  • Analytics and intelligence to prove program ROI


Employees are the heart and soul of your company. So, make employee recognition a part of your company culture to improve employee engagement and drive organic productivity.

Choose the right employee recognition programs. These are not expenses but investments that are going to reap long-term results. A digital platform for designing and implementing rewards & recognition programs can go a long way in reaping sustained benefits.

PossibleWorks’ Recognition system is flexible, customizable, and easily adaptable by organizations big and small. Brands like Kohler, Essar, Future Group, and Tata Sky have been using our employee recognition programs .

If you have any questions about or are looking to implement a digital platform for Rewards and Recognition programs and their benefits, get in touch with us right away.

Are you using the right technology for your Recognition programs?

Checkout our Buyer’s Guide to Employee Recognition software Or Book a Demo

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