While many businesses and employees are still reeling from the disruption caused by the pandemic, there is something employers can do to re-energize, motivate, engage, and inspire their staff to stay focused and give their all: automate employee rewards and recognition.
Philip Altschuler, Sr. Vice President of HR and Training at Gables Residential, made this move pre-COVID and believes it’s a part of the reason why employees have fared so well this year. “Our old recognition programs cost the same, but didn’t promote frequent recognition or the ability to recognize all contributors. This was not only ineffective, but negatively impacted other high performers who didn’t get ‘picked’ as the very best,” says Altschuler.
So, he set out to find a program where recognition could be provided throughout the year, which recognized all employees who lived the company values, not just a select few. Additionally, he wanted a fun and engaging program where…
- Peers could give and receive recognition, and supervisors could award points.
- Other ancillary programs related to sales, milestones, and wellness could be both recognized and rewarded.
- The system was custom-built to the company’s specs and reflected it’s unique culture
- It didn’t increase the existing recognition budget.
Enter the WorkProud™ platform and mobile app, which met every requirement and then some. Recognition comes in the form of points, which can be redeemed for time off with pay, unique experiences, merchandise, gift cards, and travel, which when paired with Gables sabbatical programs, gives associates the ability to travel during their time away from work. And HR can quickly set up short-term contests, with gamification options, to increase participation.
Gables found that promoting birthdays and anniversaries, combined with ongoing fun contests, motivates employees to log in often. And because the program allows for anytime/anywhere recognition, when COVID forced them to work-from-home, they actually saw an increase in participation and engagement.
Before WorkProud™, 140 associates across the country were selected each year for recognition. Gables now sees 11,000 recognitions per year and while 95% of employees already participate, engagement and interest in the program continues to grow. While participation and engagement are important, satisfaction is also critical. Gables surveys associates several times per year, and 90% of feedback related to this program is positive. Amazingly, these results were delivered along with 29% savings in recognition program spend.
Most importantly? The platform has managers focusing less on what’s wrong, and looking for more (and new) opportunities to recognize and reward positive contributions. This shift is building a Culture of Appreciation, where associates are proud of their work and proud of working at Gables, which drives retention, productivity, and trust.
JILL, WHAT CAN I DO? Check out the WorkProud™ platform and mobile app. While manual recognition is better than no recognition, technology can help you fast-track your journey to a culture of rampant recognition. A culture where employees are inspired to give you the shirt off their back and customers are inspired to come back for more.