Employee recognition

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Health Assured team

26 November 2021

Employee recognition that works can revolutionise a workplace. When employees feel valued for their contributions, it boosts productivity and improves relationships between staff members.

So, it’s not only in the interest of employee satisfaction. Employee recognition forms part of a cycle of employee wellbeing that benefits both parties.

When employers recognise and reward employees for their efforts, the culture and atmosphere improve. Work-life satisfaction and productivity increase too as engagement gets a boost. And because of this, absenteeism, staff turnover and long-term sickness all begin to decline.

This employer guide will help you to understand employee rewards and recognition in more detail. We’ll look at how you can set up an employee recognition system and the benefits that this will create in the workplace.

What is employee recognition?

Employee recognition is praising and acknowledging employees for the good work that they do. It involves acknowledging staff behaviour or actions that align with the organisation's goals and values.

Acts of employee recognition happen in the moment and after the event has taken place. Employee recognition occurs in many ways, from a well-done email to weekly awards and employee recognition schemes.

Small or large, acts of employee recognition won’t go unnoticed.

Benefits of employee recognition in the workplace

The importance of employee recognition in the workplace often gets underestimated, but there are many positive outcomes that occur as a result.

Here are a few of the benefits employee recognition can provide:

Increased engagement

Employee recognition positively reinforces productive action. When employees are praised, they are more invested in the goals, vision, and motivations of the organisation.

Emotionally invested employees are more likely to engage with their workload and colleagues, customers, or clients. Employee recognition impacts employee engagement massively.

Improved team morale

Employee recognition improves team morale by boosting the mood and atmosphere of the team.

When team morale is good, employees are optimistic, enthusiastic, and efficient. Employees are happy to come to work each day. They’re committed to their workloads, and they are motivated to progress towards team goals.

Reduction in workplace stress

When employees feel valued for their contributions to the workplace, there’s a reduction in tension at work. Employee recognition provides employees with the essential support they need to overcome times of high workplace stress.

When the support is there, employees will feel more comfortable speaking up if they are struggling.

Decrease in absenteeism

Workplace stress, a lack of support and poor communication create a hostile work environment. When this type of atmosphere is at play, productivity drops and staff turnover increases. It’s not the type of environment employees stick around for.

But when employers have appreciation and recognition for employees, the company culture improves, and a decrease in costly absenteeism occurs.

Does recognition motivate employees?

Employee recognition in the workplace motivates employees to align with the business’ goals and motivations.

Giving recognition to employees provides positive encouragement for them to aim high and keep achieving.

Employees spend a long time at work each week, and sometimes this can become repetitive.

Employee motivation depends upon feedback, recognition, and a supportive working environment. Employees who do receive this recognition are happier, more motivated, and more engaged with the organisation.

Employee rewards and recognition framework

It is a good idea to establish an employee rewards and recognition framework that outlines your organisation's approach.

You can provide this in employee recognition training for managers as guidance on how to incorporate employee recognition into their communications. Try to align this framework with the overall organisational culture.

Here are some ideas to include in yours:


Recognise employees’ successes as soon as they occur. In-the-moment recognition doesn’t take long, but there are huge benefits.


Ensure managers are praising all employees equally for their contributions. The atmosphere within a team can soon become hostile if recognition isn’t fairly distributed.


To make employee recognition effective, keep in mind why you’re praising the behaviours at hand. Make sure they align with the company values or work towards team objectives. Tell the employee at hand so they are aware of the positive effects of their work.

Employee recognition ideas

When recognising employees for their achievements, think about what type of recognition your employees want.

Here are some employee recognition examples for you to consider:

Peer to peer employee recognition

Recognition doesn’t always have to come from a manager. Encouraging peer to peer recognition in the workplace is another way to boost team morale. It could be via a weekly nomination or email, or it could be verbally. But it’s important to encourage your team to recognise each other for a job well done.

Recognition of employees’ ideas

For employees to put forward new ideas, they must be engaged in the task at hand and use their minds creatively.

So, try to praise employees when they raise a new idea, even if it’s not quite up to scratch. This praise will encourage them to continue to engage and speak up in the future.

Long term employee recognition

In the long term, it’s good to set up an employee recognition strategy that hardcodes your intentions into the employee culture.

An employee of the month, yearly awards and incentives are all good ways to do this. It shows your employees that you value their contributions to the workplace.

Get help with employee recognition from Health Assured

Employees who go unrecognised for their contributions to the workplace are unmotivated, disengaged, and unproductive.

But when employees receive the support they need, their attitude towards work improves.

Our Employee Assistance Plan (EAP) helps you look after your employees when they are experiencing difficulties.

We offer a 24/7, 365 helpline with trained counsellors, as well as legal, financial, and medical advisors. Employees can access this service anytime, anywhere. When you support employees in this way, their mental health and performance at work will improve.

We also offer a support line for managers to guide them in dealing with workplace issues and improving their employee recognition skills.

Our wellbeing experts can offer guidance and support on keeping your employees motivated and happy. Get in touch today on 0844 891 0353

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