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Social Recognition Programs Throughout the Employee Lifecycle
Whether you know it or not, your new hires will develop their opinion of your organization early – often within the first few days at work. So while your company may want more time to cast a lasting positive impression, it’s vital to begin on the right foot with recognition geared toward helping them see your amazing organization and the values you hold. That’s why frequent recognition that begins early and stays consistent is so important. Utilizing a social recognition program to recognize your workforce throughout the employee lifecycle can not only increase engagement and job satisfaction but can also decrease turnover. Below are some tips on how to utilize your system at different stages throughout the employee lifecycle.
- Begin the recognition experience immediately. Welcome your new hire to the team with a signed card from their coworkers, and maybe even a logo’d hat or shirt. Make them feel like part of the team!
- Set clear expectations and attainable goals within your training program, whether it lasts one day, one week, or the first year. Recognize the completion of those goals with a reward.
- Include your employees in your social recognition program ASAP. This will allow them to be recognized by their peers for the work they do. Bonus: this also acts as an outlet to thank those who have helped them.
- Host a new employee luncheon on a monthly or quarterly basis as a way to introduce your new colleagues to their department heads, senior leaders, and prominent figures in your organization.
New Employees (1-3 Years of Service)
- Supervisors should consistently recognize their new employees at least once to twice a month in your social recognition program. Make sure to note improvements in skills as confidence grows.
- Don’t wait until your employee reaches five or ten years of service to recognize their dedication! Recognize the smaller milestone anniversaries of one year, 18 months, two years, and three years.
- Create annual awards specifically dedicated to recognizing your newer employees, such as a “Newcomer of the Year” award, a “Star Starter” award, and other awards to highlight those key players.
- Don’t forget to include frequent verbal recognition into the mix! While social badges and points are often rated the most valuable among all generations, verbal recognition is still highly appreciated.
Established Employees (3+ Years of Service)
- Keep recognition consistent, with at least one recognition touchpoint per month from that employee’s manager. Make sure they are receiving consistent recognition from their team as well!
- Find out what makes that employee tick – from their language of recognition to their enneagram type, and make sure that employee is recognized in a way that is most meaningful to them.
- Include recognition for personal milestones like purchasing a home or the birth of a new child. Remember – these are your people – not just employees! Treat them as such.
- Provide opportunities for skill growth and development. By providing opportunities for learning and self-development, your employees stay educated in their fields and more aware of potential issues and process improvements.
- Allow retirement recognition to begin early to give the employee and their team time to adjust to the upcoming change in personnel.
- Award the employee with their retirement gift at least 8-12 weeks in advance of their last day to give them plenty of time to redeem for any award or receive their gift in the mail.
- Throw a party for the entire team to celebrate the retiring coworker and share their goodbyes.
- Send reminders to the team members of the colleague’s upcoming retirement. This will allow all coworkers plenty of time to get a gift or send them an ecard.
Whether you’re in the beginning stages of implementing a recognition program, or an old pro at the recognition game, these tips can help you refine your skills to better engage your employees. Have any other tips to add? Feel free to comment below – we always love to see the creative way our clients recognize their teams!
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