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How to Reward & Recognize employees while they work from home?

Picture of Meera Shridhar

Meera Shridhar

Meera Shridhar is an HCM ERP professional with expertise in SAP HCM and SuccessFactors. Meera possesses rich experience in implementing and supporting HCM projects across industries. Besides, she is an alumna of National Institute of Technology, Calicut and completed MBA in Human Resources from ICFAI University, Dehradun. Meera loves solving cryptic crosswords and is passionate about writing.


Employees are the most valuable assets of any organization. Workforce productivity varies proportionately with employee performance which in turn relates to employee motivation. What motivates employees the most – compensation, pay hikes, fancy job titles, better opportunities – does the list incorporate everything? There is one vital parameter missing – recognition for good work!


Well, we all need at least a pat on the back to feel motivated!


As rightly quoted by Dale Carnegie, “People work for money but go the extra mile for recognition, praise and rewards.”


Certainly, motivation is a key driver to effective employee performance. And, organizations achieve this through rewards and recognition of outperforming employees. However, in the wake of the pandemic, HR managers across companies and geographies are confronted with the question of how to effectively reward and recognise their employees while they work from home.


Amplify your employee recognition program


Digitalization is already in place in the HR sector, including the rewards and recognition element. It may sound uncanny as to how a digitally awarded recognition could be effective! However, with the Covid – 19 pandemic outbreak necessitating people to work from their homes, newer ways to reward and recognise people have emerged. Let’s explore some of the modern trends evolving in this regard.


E-mails & Feeds:


E-mails are a powerful tool as all employees would have an e-mail address configured. Managers, peers, team-mates or colleagues could form email groups and share praiseworthy messages to commend each-other’s accomplishments. This would inculcate a habit of respecting others’ efforts and foster a stronger team spirit.

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Building an amazing workplace is not a single day phenomenon, it is more of an everlasting endeavour. It starts long before new employees join an organization and lasts well after. Becoming an amazing workplace is imbibed deep into the DNA of the Company’s culture and is a message that every employee silently conveys and displays in his attitude and passion at the work place.


Recognition Dashboards:


Some organizations deploy software which have dedicated dashboards or pages supporting employees to award stars, points, ratings or scribble words of appreciation, just by logging in to the software tool. Organizations configure their pages such that there could be several categories of rewards. The privileges to grant points or scores or write comments could be restricted to certain groups of users, based on the company’s recognition policy.

Organizations even offer the option of awarding recognition through mobile apps. Such easy access encourages supervisors to recognise their team members and colleagues instantly, as everyone nowadays spends majority time with a handheld device.


Social Media:


Social media, be it, Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter offers a comprehensive platform with ample visibility for employees to get recognised. In accordance with the company policies, managers and other staff are advised to post their ‘words of praise’ on these channels. This form of recognition reinforces employee motivation as someone who gets recognised would in turn stand chances of receiving – ‘Congrats’, ‘Keep it up, pal’, ‘Well done, friend’ and so many other messages from their connections. So, one enjoys a great virtual bash!

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Virtual Meets:


Technology proves useful in such crises as the pandemic. You would certainly have virtual gatherings via Skype, Zoom, WebEx and such media. If one of your colleagues or co-worker needs appreciation for an accomplishment, invite everyone in your team virtually and ask one of them to arrange a small fun activity. Praise the concerned person during the meet and may be, you could ask them to speak on their achievement, challenges faced and so on.


Learning options:


A high-performing employee would feel elated when learning opportunities directed at professional development are offered. Even this could act as a great perk and a source of motivation. To reward and recognise your employee’s commendable performance, you could offer them courses or certifications free of cost. This would encourage the other people also to work harder and deliver better.


Gift Vouchers/coupons:


Tangible rewards usually have a greater degree of influence on motivation. You could send gift vouchers or coupons to reward and recognise your star performers. This could be delivered to their residential address as a surprise gift!


10 personality traits of disengaged employees


Employee Disengagement defines individuals who are disengaged, i.e. indifferent or emotionally disconnected from their organisation or employers.


If you care about your organisations’ health and well being, it is important to identify disengagement at your workplace and address it timely. So how do you know if employees are not engaged? Though the list of characteristic traits of disengaged employees could go on and on, here are 10 major signs to watch for in identifying disengagement at your workplace.

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Informal Virtual Chat:


As a manager or supervisor, to reward and recognise your reportee or subordinate for their awesome performance, you could invite them for a personalised one-on-one informal virtual chat. You could have a casual talk with the concerned employee lauding them for their work, discussing their personal and professional goals, interests and what career paths your organization chalks out for them.


Paid Leaves:


Someone toiling day and night working on projects, handling deals and clients or relentlessly troubleshooting issues, especially from home, certainly needs a break. To reward and recognise your well-performing people, you may offer some paid leaves or a short vacation. This could help the fatigued employees rejuvenate and resume afresh.




Well, these are few options to reward and recognise your employees while they work from home. The fact still remains that a face-to-face appreciation (not virtual) or a congratulatory handshake would mean a lot to someone than any of the above modes of recognition. However, in view of the current situation, it looks like it’s time we adopt to and adapt ourselves to these ways to reward and recognise our people and also being rewarded and recognised as employees.

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